Green Bullying: NRDC threatens legal action over memo spoof

The Natural Resources Defense Council has threatened legal action against JunkScience.com and others for a spoof published on Forbes.com.

Yesterday, Jon Entine published in his Forbes column a satire involving a spoofed memo from the NRDC.

Not only was Entine’s column removed by Forbes.com, Entine’s relationship with Forbes was ended as a result.

Though NRDC regularly attacks companies and their products with junk science-based claims, the group has the temerity to threaten legal action against us for the mere act of excerpting and linking to Entine’s spoof — which was denoted as such.

Reluctantly, we will comply with the NRDC’s request as we can’t afford the legal fees that the $97 million-in-revenue NRDC can afford out of petty cash. Even the deep-pocketed Forbes apparently declined to challenge the NRDC’s attack on free speech.

But if anyone knows of a good First Amendment lawyer willing to work pro-bono, contact Steve Milloy at junkman@junkscience.com. We have a copy of Entine’s column and will be more than happy to re-post as soon as we can lawyer-up.

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10 responses to “Green Bullying: NRDC threatens legal action over memo spoof

  1. Ben of Houston

    Junkscience is a news link site, and you linked to something published in a respected publication with neither comment nor condemnation.

    There is no way that this action could be justified, and in fact could probably be dismissed with prejudice by a one-page request to the judge written by a layman.

  2. This makes a mockery of the First Amendment. Last time I checked there was no provision favoring those with deeper pockets.

  3. Coach Springer

    So, will they threaten legal action for this post too?
    I’m Steve Milloy.

  4. Granting that NRDC deserves spoofing, I had just a glimpse of the item and I didn’t see anything flagging it as a spoof at the time. If Dr. Gliekman was wrong with Heartland, this one is wrong with NRDC.

    • Ben of Houston

      There was a note that this was probably not real, on page 4 of 4 of the article. That footnote was wholely inadequate.

  5. Ben of Houston

    After calming down, while the NRDC is overeaching their authority in a singular take-down command, and I stand by my statement that it would not stand up in court, the NRDC isn’t completely in wrong in wanting to combat this fraud.

    Mr. Milloy, if you are looking for advice from your patrons, here’s mine: “let’s work with them”. Two wrongs don’t make a right, and libel against someone you disagree with is wrong. However, I cannot abide the “take it down or I’ll sue” implications of this document. Put it back up in the archives with an update note that this article written was a forgery (and a bad one, too. I had first comment about how villainous it sounded). That should have been given and an option by the NRDC to begin with. We cannot ask them to see us eye to eye if we are not willing to do the same in a case where they were clearly wronged. We cannot yield the moral high ground even an inch.

  6. It was an obvious satire, and not a very good one as I had noted in the comments for the original posting. I see no value to reposting it now. Now if someone were to write up some really good satire and label it as such, then I would be in favor.

  7. Eric Baumholer

    Maurizio,

    It’s long been true that you only get as much justice as you can afford. In the US, it’s the cost of lawyers. In other countries, it’s about bribes.

  8. Eric,

    You mean there’s a difference? Really?

  9. they need unknot their knickers

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