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« French sceptics group launches | Main | International Polar Bear Day »
Friday
Feb272015

Sauce for the goose

This was probably predictable:

Washington, D.C. -- Today, the Energy & Environment Legal Institute (E&E Legal), in conjunction with the Free Market Environmental Law Clinic (FMELC) and the Caesar Rodney Institute (CRI), filed a Delaware Freedom of Information Act request (FOIA) with the University of Delaware related to Dr. John Byrne, Director of the Center for Energy and Environmental Policy and Distinguished Professor of Energy and Climate Policy.
Specifically, the FOIA request seeks documents describing the University of Delaware’s policy or policies relating to disclosure applying to Dr. Byrne; records in the University’s possession relating to outside funding, grants, or other contributions made to support Dr. John Byrne’s work at or relating to the Center for Energy and Environmental Policy; records involving Dr. Byrne's outside funding, including consulting fees, promotional considerations, speaking fees, honoraria, travel expenses, salary and other compensation or monies given to Dr. Byrne which did not originate with the University itself; financial disclosure forms in which Dr. Byrne lists the University of Delaware or the State of Delaware as his affiliation; and records reflecting Dr. Byrne’s total annual compensation for each year at the University of Delaware.
Those who have followed recent news reports may notice that this FOIA request was inspired by and even replicated the request that U.S. Representative Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) made to seven universities, including Delaware. In his letters, Congressman Grijalva notes that the "disclosure of a few key pieces of information will establish the impartiality of climate research and policy recommendations published in your institute's name...[C]onflicts should be clear to stakeholders, including policymakers who use scientific information to make decisions." Although the University responding to Rep. Grijalva is discretionary, processing FOIA requests from Delaware citizens is not.
"We certainly appreciate Congressman Grijalva's rhetoric about the importance of disclosure and transparency," said Chris Horner, E&E Legal Senior Legal Fellow and the attorney who filed the FOIA request on behalf of the three organizations. "His insistence that the Constitution compels him to demand these records -- citing to no authority for why the universities should provide them -- so moved us that we followed in his footsteps, if in our case by proceeding under Delaware law."
It is possible that Representative Grijalva assumes that congressional letterhead carries authority to insist such demands be satisfied. Regardless, E&E Legal, FME Law and CRI appreciate the Congressman's enthusiasm that the University dedicate itself to producing such records.
The groups far more narrowly tailor the period of time covered by their request, otherwise modeled after Rep. Grijalva’s nearly verbatim (also changing of course the party whose records are involved, which we are confident is not material to whether records should be released). The requesters look forward to the University of Delaware taking to heart Rep. Grijalva's embrace of transparency, and satisfying this request made pursuant to Delaware's statute which implements the legislature’s determination that, for institutions including the University, “it is vital that citizens have easy access to public records in order that the society remain free and democratic”. FOIA § 10001.
"We have followed Rep. Grijalva's footsteps for our request, if under actual statutory making our request, unlike the Congressman's, not discretionary. UDel has provided records in the past to Greenpeace, and we are confident that the State of Delaware will comply with this request," concludes Horner.

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Reader Comments (28)

That whole thing is a clear as mud. It looks like what the dog threw up.

OK, as far as I can see this is a "tit for tat" demand of some alarmist.

Serves them right. Sceptics have always known we are under scrutiny and so I bet most sceptics half expected to be targeted. So water off a duck's back.

But alarmists - they believe they are such righteous people and so much part of the "group consensus" who are constantly egging them on to do more and more in the name of the religion.

They are ripe for plucking.

Feb 27, 2015 at 4:17 PM | Registered CommenterMikeHaseler

Only surprise is that it is not Senator Inhofe doing the retaliation. Perhaps retaliating against a lowly congressman is beneath his dignity

Feb 27, 2015 at 4:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterIvor Ward

Maybe we in the UK should be doing something here?

Who? (But maybe best not discussed here.)

Feb 27, 2015 at 4:30 PM | Registered CommenterMikeHaseler

Two wrongs don't make a right.

This whole AGW fiasco has been damaging to the practise of science.
The end of the folly is in sight - they don't even try to debate the science anymore. They just bully the man.

Can we not hope that science comes out of this with empiricism - not personalities - determining truth.

Because if we go down this path there won't be any science left in the West..

Feb 27, 2015 at 4:31 PM | Registered CommenterM Courtney

Re: M Courtney

The U of Delaware has form for freely handing over information about sceptics to eco fascist groups like greenpeace whilst denying other requests.

By making the request the way they have it has make it difficult for the university to accede to Grijalva's request and deny E&E. They will have to either protect both academics or fulfil both requests.

Feb 27, 2015 at 4:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

Mike Haseler:

That whole thing is a clear as mud. It looks like what the dog threw up.
That's because it was probably written by Chris Horner who, as much as I respect his work, never seems to master the art of good written communication - which I have commented on before at WUWT.

Feb 27, 2015 at 4:51 PM | Registered CommenterHarry Passfield

Perhaps more to the point, someone over there should be making enquiries into the organisations that provided financial support for the election of Rep. Grijalva.

Feb 27, 2015 at 4:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterBloke down the pub

BAZINGA !

Feb 27, 2015 at 5:05 PM | Unregistered Commenterfred form Canuckistan

Bloke down the pub, yes. That's the goose to pluck.
Let's play politics with politicians and practise science in the Ivy Towers.

There is more at risk here than a few scientist's careers. There's the nature of instructional science itself.

And I really don't think that's hyperbole.

Feb 27, 2015 at 5:06 PM | Registered CommenterM Courtney

I did predict it two days ago "The institutions involved should keep in mind that if they roll over for this request then they are opening themselves up for unlimited demands for every issue to be subject to the same standards. Even ignoring any embarassing links to both oil and renewables companies they could be tied up with hours and hours of paper work. It wouldn't be restricted to climate either. Republican senators might be composing letters right now."

Feb 27, 2015 at 5:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

This whole scam is beginning to go up in fire. Jo Nova's got an excellent piece of the increased media coverage in Australia Australian BOM under fire – questions about “adjusted” temperatures exploding around the world

However, in contrast Scotland is still living in #10000BC, I was speaking to a Scottish journalist about their lack of coverage of Pachauri and after they said they covered climate a lot. So I searched "Global warming" on their site and found three articles. One about Kilts, one about culture and the other about football.

That just about sums up journalistic coverage of the so called "biggest problem facing humanity" in Scotland!

Scottish journalism = news-lite

Feb 27, 2015 at 5:17 PM | Registered CommenterMikeHaseler

MikeHaseler
What are you on about?
The three biggest problems facing humanity are without doubt the wearing of the kilt, the decline in Scottish culture, and the future or otherwise of football in the continuing absence from the Premier League of Rangers FC.
And as those of us who live(d) there well know, Scotland has two seasons: June and Winter, and that is all you need to know on the subject of climate!

Feb 27, 2015 at 5:43 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

I see what they did there!

I don't like the tit-for-tat nature in principle, simply because I'm an adult, but I recognise this is far more significant and nuanced than simple schoolyard scrapping. By running this parallel to Grijalva's McCarthyism, there are no arguments the warmista (a term I use now for the first time, because I think it's now accurate) can level that cannot be instantly mirrored.

I hope (but do not trust) that each will either fail or succeed in equal measure. And if they don't, we'll at least have invaluable data at the end of the experiment.

Feb 27, 2015 at 5:49 PM | Registered CommenterSimon Hopkinson

The problem with "sauce for the goose" is that everyone ends up covered in sauce.

Feb 27, 2015 at 6:03 PM | Registered CommenterHaroldW

Seems like Grijalva has little else to do.....

http://archive.azcentral.com/opinions/articles/20140126grijalva-please-do-your-job-editorial.html Mon Jan 27, 2014

"Ever the activist, Rep. Raúl Grijalva, D-Ariz., contends his worst-of-delegation voting record is an act of defiance against a “haven’t done anything” Congress.

He also mocks the concept of “perfect attendance” generally, noting that he logged perfect attendance in the fifth grade, yet it didn’t “make me the smartest kid in the class.”

Well, he’s playing it smart now. Smart and easy. In a district as safe as a congressional seat gets, Grijalva likely will not pay much of a price for registering one of the worst voting records in Congress, as reported by The Arizona Republic’s Rebekah L. Sanders."

Feb 27, 2015 at 6:18 PM | Registered Commenterdennisa

Life is not worth living - Spock is dead.
Long life and prosperity to you all.

Global Warming does not matter!

Feb 27, 2015 at 6:57 PM | Unregistered Commenterpatrick healy

Slightly OT, but definitely in the 'sauce for the goose' area. It emerged today that the defunct Marussia Formula One team has been resurrected by Stephen Fitzpatrick, boss of the energy firm Ovo. Although, he is apparently using his 'personal finance' to fund the team, it is interesting to note that Ovo Energy, claim to have been voted best for 'Green Services in 2014', and their website bangs on about their use of renewable energy, vs fossil fuel.

I wonder how Ovo's greenie customers will react when they find out that Mr Fitzpatrick is diverting his cut of their money into petrolhead motorsport that is mainly sponsored by Big Oil?

Feb 27, 2015 at 7:13 PM | Registered CommenterSalopian

Senator Inhofe has written to the 107 (yes, 107 Institutions) who were asked to provide all details of the funding of named scientists. It's a pretty good letter and a number of other Senators have signed it. From the list below there is a possibility that Mike Mann has gotten into the Senate and is using a pseudonym. Take a look at the letter and see if you can spot which of the senators is our Mikey.

Feb 27, 2015 at 7:16 PM | Unregistered Commentergeronimo

I suppose it would have been better if I'd attached the link:

http://www.epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Majority.PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=fae52e87-eaa5-d1f3-1fa1-728a05afb6b2&Region_id=&Issue_id

Feb 27, 2015 at 7:18 PM | Unregistered Commentergeronimo

HaroldW,

The problem with "sauce for the goose" is that everyone ends up covered in sauce.

It's better than wrestling with a pig and getting covered in pigs**t. :)

Feb 27, 2015 at 8:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhil R

Bloke down the pub

I would think this an initiative from the White House and Grijalva is fronting it:

http://keywiki.org/Ra%C3%BAl_Grijalva

Feb 27, 2015 at 8:22 PM | Registered Commenterdennisa

Salopian - as far as I'm concerned hoovering greenie wallets to fund an F1 team is even better than doing so to tank up one's Gulfstream.

Feb 27, 2015 at 8:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterJEM

Isn't that filibustering? It sure looks like it...

Feb 27, 2015 at 9:08 PM | Registered CommenterAlbert Stienstra

Thanks Geronimo. I see that Inhofe and co are right on the ball. It is not surprising that Mickey Mann is quaking and siding with the republicans...he has the most to lose in the backlash if Inhofe starts. There are a few people wading across the swamps that might never be seen again if this develops into a full scale McCarthyist witch hunt.

Feb 27, 2015 at 10:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterIvor Ward

'McCarthyism' Revisionist history nonsense has taken hold in many minds.

McCarthy attempted to root out the communists in America financed by those outside of America to destroy democracy.

Now we have communists and those that wish to destroy democracy and capitalism rooting out those that wish to preserve democracy & capitalism.

Feb 28, 2015 at 12:41 PM | Unregistered CommenterPaul in Sweden

Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva receives more than 86% of his campaign donations from interests outside of his district in Arizona.

http://maplight.org/us-congress/legislator/268-ral-m-grijalva/contributions-map

Feb 28, 2015 at 12:49 PM | Unregistered CommenterPaul in Sweden

Salopian "their website bangs on about their use of renewable energy, vs fossil fuel.I wonder how Ovo's greenie customers will react when they find out that Mr Fitzpatrick is diverting his cut of their money into petrolhead motorsport that is mainly sponsored by Big Oil?"

I changed to Ovo energy over a year ago and have saved a LOT of money compared to what npower, my previous supplier, was charging me.

Although they offer a separate green energy option, in fact, Ovo's source of fuels is mainly coal at 39.3% and Gas at 22.7%. They do, however, source less nuclear energy and more renewable energy than the average for UK providers.

I would recommend them to any customers of the big 6 who want to save money. I was alarmed to read about the Formula 1 investment and hope it all comes from Fitzpatrick's own pocket!

In fact, I changed to Ovo after seeing him appear before the parliamentary Public Accounts Committee alongside the other big 6 bosses back in about November 2013. He made them look stupid with their excuses for their prices! I have not regretted making the change.

Mar 1, 2015 at 4:34 PM | Unregistered Commentermarchesarosa

Still though less the really BIG funding point escape undwelled on : that 99+% of climate funding comes from the state, which has a blatantly obvious and monumental vested interest in promoting climate alarmism.

Mar 2, 2015 at 9:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterTuppence

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