Sunday, September 20, 2009

Fake "Experts" Touted by Climate Denialists (A Series): Paul Chesser

"Paul Chesser is a special correspondent for The Heartland Institute."

That in itself should immediately bring into question Mr. Chesser's ability to speak independently on climate change issues. After all, The Heartland Institute is a free market lobbying organization whose stated mission is:

The mission of The Heartland Institute is to discover and promote free-market solutions to social and economic problems.

Their entire reason for being is to help their members avoid what they see as excessive regulation. So what is their interest in climate science? Well, policy remedies being discussed to deal with the global scientific consensus that man-made carbon dioxide emissions are significantly contributing to climate change, a dramatic and perhaps irreversible disruption of the natural balance of the earth that sustains us all. Since most policy options would require additional regulation, and Heartland's mission to limit regulation, they made a strategic decision to deny the science. Don't like the cure, so deny the disease.

So where does Mr. Chesser fit in? Chesser is basically a Heartland hired propagandist. He has no scientific training at all, never mind in climate science. He's just there to be a new name since so many of the other skeptics Heartland puts forth have lost credibility (or never had it). Chesser bills himself as the Director of Climate Strategies Watch, which itself admits is a web site dedicated to "exposing stealth environmental advocacy by the Center for Climate Strategies and scrutinizing global warming policy in the States." In other words, their sole purpose for existence is to do a hatchet job on CCS and write propaganda articles for Heartland.

Why would he do that? Well, because the Heartland Institute told him to do that. Climate Strategies Watch admits that it is nothing more than "A joint project of the John Locke Foundation, The Heartland Institute and the Better Government Project. Like Heartland, the John Locke Foundation is a libertarian, free market think tank and lobbying group. The Better Government Project is a made-up web site name that as of this date existed only as a one-page (actually, one-paragraph) web site (it's part of a network of fake organizations set up by Heartland to make it look like there is more dissent than there really is).

Back to Mr. Chesser. According to his bio on the John Locke Foundation web site, he's kind of a freelance writer/blogger whose only other background experience is working as an accountant. No climate expertise. Not even any science expertise. Just writing for hire.

Which, of course, is why he was hired by Heartland to write and post on denialist blogs.

Rule number one. Consider the credibility of the source.

More climate related articles.


Anonymous said...

Rule #1 applied to the Author: An enormous fake. Mr Chesser does not portray himself as anything other than a person which gathers information on an issue and shares his conclusion from his analysis of the information. If this author would do the same he wouldn't have to rely on personal annihilation tactics to pursue his now uncovered wicked agenda. What a bogus source!

Dan Miller said...

Paul Chesser is a reporter for my organization, the Heartland Institute, a 25-year-old think tank based in Chicago. I didn't hire him to conduct climate-change analysis. I hired him to report on the insidious way global-warming alarmists have infiltrated school curriculum, illegally captured the legislative process in several states to advance the alarmist agenda, and misrepresent scientific data presented by scientists who are global warming skeptics.

He has done an admirable job in all three areas, and I urge readers of this site to review Paul's reporting based on objective facts and reject the ad hominem attacks.

Dan Miller
The Heartland Institute

Paul Talerico said...

Dear Mr. Dake Page,

I served with Paul Chesser. I know Paul Chesser. Paul Chesser is a friend of mine. Mister, you're no Paul Chesser.

Unknown said...

Hullo Dake - perhaps you could add any new info you've dug up on Chesser and Climate Strategies Watch, to their SourceWatch pages?

It's a good way to make your research usable for the future.
(note: I say this from vast experience in generating the un-usable kind...)