Luck of the Green

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The American Tradition Institute, a D.C. thinktank that monitors and critiques the environmentalist movement, has an interesting Freedom of Information Act lawsuit going on right now. The institute is suing — NASA.

Now, we taxpayers normally think of NASA as some kind of, well, space agency. But NASA is one of the big funding agencies for research on Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW). And one of the luminaries of the AGW world is the scientist James Hansen — you remember, the one who ran around claiming that the Evil Bush tried to silence him. This poor little victim of truth will go down in history as a modern-day Galileo, standing up to wicked anti-science authority.

But it turns out that this paragon of virtue has been pocketing tall dollars off his disinterested research, over and above the tidy $180K he earns as director of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies. (By the bye, it is not called the Goddard Institute for Man-Caused Global Warming.)

NASA refuses to release the information on what exactly Hansen has been paid by outside groups, which is why the American Tradition Institute is suing. But it would appear that the New Galileo is receiving megabucks from environmentalist sects, which use his work to further their political agenda.

For example, the enviro group called the Dan David Foundation gave a prize to a group including Hansen, and his share was about $333,000 to $500,000. He also won the “Sophie Prize” of $100,000 for work on a “sustainable future” — meaning a future bereft of jobs for actual people, I suspect. He copped a $550,000 “Blue Planet” prize from the Asahi Glass Foundation. He scarfed up nearly 50 grand in speaking fees. He got a free pass to the conference by the Bill Clinton Foundation that other participants had to pay a cool 15-grand fee for attending. And he snagged a way cool $720K in legal services provided by the George Soros Open (read: Closed) Society Institute.

If you are a federal employee receiving certain types of side income, you need to file certain disclosure forms (Forms 17-60 and SF278). The FOIA lawsuit is intended to get NASA to release those forms for its boy Galileo. The ball is now in NASA’s court.

The recent book Merchants of Doubt (by Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway) argues that the scientists who dispute global warming are paid by the Koch Brothers and other Big Oil companies to spreaddoubt about AGW. But when AGW researchers receive lavish funding from Soros groups and others, why, that’s just peachy with some environmentalists. Rather hypocritical, no?

We can certainly say this: it really can be easy being Green. Hell, being Green can result in rolling in the green!

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