Groups sponsoring an upcoming Heartland Institute conference are standing by the conservative think tank amid a controversy surrounding a short-lived billboard campaign linking belief in climate change to the Unabomber and Charles Manson.
The Heartland Institute ended the Chicago-area billboard campaign last week amid a backlash over the ads. The Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers, for example, wrote to Heartland Institute President Joseph Bast last week to “disavow any future relationship with your organization.”
But while the Heartland Institute’s corporate sponors are under pressure to cut ties with the think tank, groups that are sponsoring Heartland’s May 21-23 climate change conference in Chicago said they have no intention of pulling their support.
“CEI is not withdrawing as a co-sponsor of the International Conference on Climate Change,” Myron Ebell, director of the Center for Energy and Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, said in an email.
“This is not an endorsement of Heartland’s ads, but I would point out to you that the reason they may have thought they were appropriate is that the media have been so tolerant of similar attacks by the left on climate realists.”
Ebell said environmental groups have aggressively attacked skeptics of climate science.
“There have been only a few mild objections made to the use of the word denier by the media. Nor have there been outcries when prominent environmentalists have called for war-crime-type trials,” Ebell said. “It seems to me that Heartland may have thought that they were merely responding in kind.”
Reason Foundation Vice President Julian Morris also said the group would continue to sponsor the conference.
“We disagree with Heartland’s ad campaign, but still plan to co-sponsor and participate in their conference because Reason believes open debate and the exchange of ideas are vital to a free society,” he said in a statement.
Harrumph! E2 Wire goes on to claim: “… Junk Science, a website devoted to questioning climate science“. That’s not entirely true – we question all dodgy science and I go to a lot of trouble trying to highlight diverse items across the spectrum of disciplines. Can we help it that “climate science” is both the most egregious junk science and the most prolific?