If you’re following the latest sorties of the climate campaign, you’ll know that Senate Democrats, led by Rhode Island Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, are calling for RICO investigations of climate skeptics. Simpleton that I am, I always thought that the RICO statute (short for Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act) was intended chiefly for people named Rico, so it’s application to climate skeptics seems more like an attempt to intimidate climate dissenters. Nice little think tank you have here; shame if anything happened to it.
Last week Whitehouse put out a press release containing his letter to ExxonMobil blasting the energy company for supporting organizations that support actual energy production. Imagine that. But that’s where it gets fun. On the list of Whitehouse’s is my former employer, the American Enterprise Institute. Where, last year, Whitehouse rolled out his proposal for a carbon tax. I guess no one thought to check the transcripts of the senator’s appearances before sending his letter and putting out the press release. My goodness: the climate skeptic conspiracy is so vast that it even snares Sen. Whitehouse unawares!
It gets better. In the course of his speech at AEI last year, Whitehouse had this to say:
As American Enterprise Institute scholars Kevin Hassett, Steven Hayward, and Kenneth Green put it, “Because a carbon tax would cause carbon emissions to be reduced efficiently across the entire market, other measures that are less efficient–and sometimes even perverse in their impacts–could be eliminated… As regulations impose significant costs and distort markets, the potential to displace a fairly broad swath of environmental regulations with a carbon tax offers benefits beyond greenhouse gas reductions” i.e., economic benefits.
Well, I suppose I should offer up a mea culpa for ever having said anything nice about a carbon tax, and the senator left out the context of the article, which was a comparative analysis of a carbon tax versus the totally corrupt cap and trade proposal that was actually on the table at the time of our paper several years ago. But that misses the point. It’s just plain funny when you’re a climate criminal one day, and a source of wisdom the next. Two senators in one!
I’m thinking of filing for an injunction in court, asking that the senator be banned from ever citing any of my work so long as I remain on his Enemies List.
More here from Energy in Depth.