The Democrats’ attack on dissenters of the government's official catastrophic climate change narrative, which started with Exxon, is reaching more and more private citizens for the crime of speaking their minds. Now, the attack has hit Alex Epstein’s Center for Industrial Progress. The Daily Caller published Epstein’s “terse response to a subpoena sent by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey Wednesday.” Michael Bastasch reports:
Healey demanded the oil giant ExxonMobil hand over 40 years of documents, including information pertaining to the company’s dealings with about a dozen think tanks and trade associations, which have been targeted by environmental groups for opposing left-wing global warming policies.
Healey’s subpoena targeted the Center for Industrial Progress (CIP), a for-profit think tank founded by Epstein. Epstein wasn’t exactly happy about being targeted for disagreeing with Healey on global warming, so he sent the AG’s office the following response: “Re: your demand to seize my emails—Fuck off, fascist.”
The Washington Times also reported on Epstein’s response:
Mr. Epstein is a proud fossil fuel advocate, a believer that the benefits from cheap, reliable energy are more than offset by any still-under-debate problems from rising carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. His views are laid out in his 2014 book “The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels” (Penguin Random House).
For this, he finds himself on the prosecutor’s radar. His advocacy group, the Center for Industrial Progress, was named in an April 19 subpoena issued by Ms. Healey’s office demanding 40 years of communications between ExxonMobil and a dozen free market groups and universities.
Epstein himself writes in Forbes (First the Government Went After ExxonMobil. Now They’re Going After Me):
The government has no right to demand a single email of mine or Exxon’s unless it has evidence that we are committing fraud by concealing or fabricating evidence. In the case of the climate impact of CO2, this is impossible–because all the evidence about CO2 and climate is in the public domain, largely collected and disseminated by government agencies or government-funded educational institutions.
But [ExxonMobil] ended up being right. The speculative claims turned out to be false. We have experienced mild (not runaway) warming that is only loosely correlated with CO2–and global fossil fueled development has helped bring climate-related deaths to an all-time low. How can you say #ExxonKnew about an imminent climate catastrophe that wasn’t real?
Healey is part of a cabal of Democrat AGs using (actually, abusing) the prosecutorial power of the state to silence global warming dissenters. This attack is being waged under cover of anti-fraud laws. But as Epstein continues:
There is a fundamental distinction in civilized society between fraud and opinion. By calling dissenting opinions fraud, the Massachusetts Attorney General and others are making independent thought a crime. To do this in the name of science is obscene. Science thrives on the open, competitive exchange of evidence and arguments–not of suppressing dissenters. True scientists can win on the competitive market of ideas. Newton didn’t need to suppress dissenters to advance his three laws of motion and Einstein didn’t need to suppress dissenters to advance his theories of relativity. Only those with fallacious conclusions are desperate for government to descend on their opponents. The opponents of the heliocentric theory did need to suppress Galileo. And the opponents of fossil fuels, who have staked careers and status on what are now clearly exaggerated assessments of CO2’s warming impact and clearly underestimated assessments of fossil fuels’ life-and-death importance to billions, cannot win on a competitive market of ideas. This is why they are so desperate to claim that “the debate is over,” to indoctrinate young students into climate catastrophism before they can think critically, to deny government research funding to scientists who disagree with them, and to falsely claim a 97% consensus.
In my view, this modern day inquisition is proof that the catastrophic climate change dogma is a load of crap. The inquisition should remove all doubt that the American Left represents fascism.
[One positive note: As the Washington Times reported, “[Virgin Islands Attorney General Claude E.] Walker wound up dropping a subpoena in May against the Competitive Enterprise Institute, which is pursuing sanctions against the prosecutor. The institute is one of the dozen groups named in the Massachusetts subpoena against Exxon.” We’ll have to wait and see if that is the beginning of the unraveling of the entire Democrat inquisition.]
First the Government Went After ExxonMobil. Now They’re Going After Me—Alex Epstein