There are a few fundamental bricks in the conservative wall of truth. One is that anything and anyone who is non-white, non-USA in origin is probably evil and part of the One World Gov’mint Conspiracy. Yet News Corp. which has become a cornerstone of the conservative noise machine is owned by two four’ners, Rupert Murdoch and the second largest holder of News Corp. stock Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, a nephew of the Saudi king. There are a few conservatives on the internet claiming that Fox News is not conservative enough because of the Prince bin Talal connection, but certainly not the conservative establishment. Now comes yet another connections between conservatives and non-American influence on public policy and science, Global warming sceptics using media campaign to discredit IPCC.
Lord Lawson’s campaign group for climate change sceptics, the Global Warming Policy Foundation, has been executing a carefully co-ordinated campaign with its media and political allies to discredit and misrepresent the findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
On 27 September, the IPCC published the final draft of the Summary for Policymakers from working group I’s contribution on the physical science basis of climate change for its Fifth Assessment Report.
The official launch of the IPCC document was held in Stockholm, but London became the centre of the universe for climate change sceptics as they sought to exploit the UK’s influential media market.
The Heartland Institute, a Chicago-based lobby group for free market fundamentalists, teamed up with a like-minded UK organisation, Civitas, to stage a press conference in London on the same day in an attempt to steal some of the limelight from the IPCC report.
As leaked internal documents revealed last year, Heartland has been paying retired scientists to produce a campaign document for sceptics under the title of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change.
Two of its authors, Fred Singer and Robert Carter, were invited to London for the Civitas press conference and to exploit the practice by some editors to create a “false balance” by putting up a sceptic to counter the view of climate researchers.
The BBC jumped at the chance and Carter and Singer were soon touring the studios at Broadcasting House giving back-to-back interviews. Radio 4’s The World At One even gave Carter more airtime than the IPCC.
BBC editors appeared to be unaware that Carter and Singer are paid by the Heartland Institute, which gained worldwide notoriety last year for a billboard campaign that associated the “Unabomber” Ted Kaczynski and Charles Manson with a belief in global warming.
The Heartland Institute itself is part of the enormous and well funded conservative astroturf that puts out highly suspect reports to just plain tales of fantasy. They are in turn a member of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). ALEC is the modern day version of the smoke filled political backroom – they’re the money people – the ones who can and do fill the coffers of conservatives who carry their water, or in a few instances, punish a Republican who might for instance suggest that climate change was a real possibility. ALEC is not a stand alone entity, but is part of the Koch brothers network of influence – the billionaire brothers who are always complaining about how tough they have it and the USA is going to hell in a hand-basket because politicians don’t just take dictation from them and legislate accordingly. The long history of conservatives believing in nefarious conspiracies and complex entanglements is really just a weird projection of their own corrupt and anti-Democratic agenda.