House Science Committee: we have a duty to investigate your effort to criminalize scientific dissent

Posted: June 21, 2016 by oldbrew in Big Brother, censorship, climate, Legal, Politics

Political battle lines seem to be being drawn over the attempt by some US Attorney Generals to use legal pressure to harass and intimidate perceived dissenters from climate change orthodoxy, whatever that may be.
H/T GWPF / Washington Times

The 17 attorneys general pursuing climate change dissenters for accusations of “fraud” want House Republicans to mind their own business. That’s not going to happen.

Seventeen Republicans on the House Science, Space and Technology Committee reasserted their right in a Friday letter to conduct oversight on state investigations that represent a threat to the First Amendment and “the free flow of scientific research.”

The letter to the 17 attorneys general — 16 Democrats and one independent — came after several refused to cooperate with a May 18 request by committee Republicans for information related to the coordinated campaign to pursue climate change dissenters, starting with ExxonMobil Corp.

“The House Science Committee’s authority to investigate the concerns raised in my prior letter are grounded in the Constitution and reflected in the rules of the House of Representatives. The Committee strongly disagrees with your contentions,” said the letter, led by committee Chairman Lamar Smith, Texas Republican.

“The Committee intends to continue its vigorous oversight of the coordinated attempt to deprive companies, nonprofit organizations, and scientists of their First Amendment rights and ability to fund and conduct scientific research free from intimidation and threats of prosecution,” the letter said.

The committee renewed its request for the 17 attorneys general — sometimes called the “Green 20” — to turn over documents related to their campaign, including communications with 10 environmental groups and foundations, by June 24.

New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman, who hosted a March 29 press conference to unveil AGs United for Clean Power, declined last month to cooperate with the committee’s investigation, citing the “lack of congressional jurisdiction over state law enforcement activities and the committee’s intrusion into sovereign state actions protected by the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.”

Climate advocacy groups including Greenpeace, the Union of Concerned Scientists and the RockefellerBrothers Fund have also refused to comply with the panel’s request for information related to their work with the attorneys general.

“The premise of Chairman Smith’s letter is a farce,” UCS President Ken Kimmell said in a May 19 statement. “The attorneys general are not investigating ExxonMobil’s scientific research, but rather whether the company misled shareholders and the public about the dangers of climate change in order to continue profiting from a lucrative product.”

So far, the committee has issued requests only for information, not subpoenas. In their latest letter, committee Republicans argued that Mr. Schneiderman’s previous statements show that his office will decide what constitutes the “best science” on climate change.

“In essence, you are saying if your office disagrees with whether fossil fuel companies’ scientists were conducting and using ‘the best science,’ the corporation could be held liable for fraud,” said the House committee letter.

“Not only does the possibility exist that such action could have a chilling effect on scientists performing federally funded research, but it also could infringe on the civil rights of scientists who become targets of these inquiries,” the letter said. “Your actions violate the scientists’ First Amendment rights. Congress has a duty to investigate your effort to criminalize scientific dissent.”

The House Republicans also argue that much of the research conducted on climate change under scrutiny by the attorneys general has been funded with federal dollars.

Source: U.S. Republicans Turn Up Heat In Climate Dissent Probes | The Global Warming Policy Forum (GWPF)

[Original report by Valerie Richardson, The Washington Times]

  1. […] Source: House Science Committee: we have a duty to investigate your effort to criminalize scientific dissent… […]

  2. oldbrew says:

    There has to be something fundamentally wrong when government officials are trying to enforce acceptance of science-related theories.

  3. catweazle666 says:

    “There has to be something fundamentally wrong when government officials are trying to enforce acceptance of science-related theories.”

    It’s called Lysenkoism, and is a manifestation of Stalinism.

  4. oldbrew says:

    Always wondered what a gulag was like 😐

    Only in a TV-doc sort of way I hasten to add.

  5. “There has to be something fundamentally wrong…”

    As I wrote in a 2013 post, “The System Is Broken: Incompetent Science and Insane Politics”:

    “…All of this, of course, is happening in the immediate context of a political war, being waged by what I call the Insane Left, upon all those they want to demonize and marginalize in the public mind. The majority of voices you gather information from, particularly the mainstream media (but even the
    “lukewarm skeptics” in the climate debates), are incompetently and/or fraudulently pretending the system is working as it should–but it is not, and reality and recognition of the objective, scientific truth were the first victims in the war. You cannot stop the insanity if you will not recognize it as
    insanity, if people will not recognize the system is broken.”

    The issue is the insanity of the Left, which should be clear by now, with their demonstrated total disregard for even basic constitutional safeguards of individuals’ (especially scientists’) inalienable rights. It is complicated by the fact that few are willing to face the fact that it is insanity driving Obama and the radical Left. Few will even acknowledge that Obama and other Democratic leaders are pathological liars, or in other words, in the context of the cult they are all in service to, totally deluded acolytes of a jihadist political ideology. The Insane Left is at war with America, from within, and the President’s refusal to name Islamic terrorists as such (as he and his surrogates are doing yet again with last week’s mass shooting in Orlando, FL), and his record of bending over for them–both backward and forward, infamously bowing to them–and always, always blatantly lying to the American people and the world (as he did in blaming the Benghazi terrorism on a basically unknown anti-Mohammed video), is why anyone with any sense in America (most famously now, Donald Trump–the only politician or TV talking head who will) questions his obvious sympathy with the Muslim world, over his own country.

    Mass scientific incompetence, and political insanity of the party in power. The system is broken.

  6. p.g.sharrow says:

    I first encountered members of the Lunatic left in 1958. Newly minted school teachers, teaching us in Jr high school that patriotism and the belief in a higher power was foolishness and the mark of the un-enlightened and untrained mind. The brain washing by the liberal progressives was already well under way in California schools nearly 60 years ago. Even then I was informed that, if I persisted in my antiquated beliefs, I would be prevented from any academic advancement. Farm laborer or the trades was my career path. Good thing I preferred being outside working in the soil! 😎 …pg

  7. oldbrew says:

    Pushback time…

    House GOP Pressures Dem. State AGs To Drop Attack On Climate Skeptics

  8. oldbrew says:

    Batty Yale law dean opposes free speech for climate skeptics.

    No shortage of one-eyed climate cranks in academia it seems.

  9. oldbrew says:

    Liberal AG Global Warming Investigations Into Exxon Are Falling Apart

    ‘Exxon has essentially stopped two of the four attorneys general investigations. But California’s investigation into Exxon has also not made much progress since it was launched in January.’

  10. oldbrew says:

    Rhode Island’s AG Sued For Withholding Docs In Global Warming Investigation

    Read more:

    Unlucky 😀

  11. oldbrew says:

    The heat is still on…

    Date: 24/08/16 Valerie Richardson – The Washington Times

  12. oldbrew says:

    Hearing set for Sept. 14th

    [Lamar] Smith scheduled the Sept. 14 hearing to demonstrate his congressional authority to investigate the attorneys general. Both New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey have said Smith doesn’t have the authority to conduct his investigation.

    House Science Committee to Hold Sept. Hearing on Dem. State AG Climate Inquisition