Virgins need not apply....
This post is a series of comments on an important article by Andrew Dessler and Dave Roberts on the AEI's high school essay prize for writing on climate change. While agreeing with their bottom line
What they do not acknowledge is that the conservative movement has squandered its credibility on the subject of climate change. After years of efforts to deny or obfuscate mainstream climate science -- driven by ideology, fossil-fuel funding, or some unknowable mix of the two -- conservatives simply are not trusted on the issue.important things necessary to understand the controversy have been swept under the rug through AEI's PR campaign. Sad to say, Dessler and Roberts have also been distracted (IEHO of course, speaking in the third small animal, and yes, the opinion of the house mice also count). Go read Dessler and Roberts first.
1. There were two letters. Andrew Dessler saw and made public the first one which was a specific approach to Schroeder and North of Texas A&M for a science article and made an UNCONDITIONAL offer of $10K$. No other copies of this letter have been seen. No one has come forward to say they received one. That letter was sent by Green who had previously written an article with Schroeder and Tim Ball (interesting that yes?) A reasonable Rabett would assume that Green was trying for a repeat performance and had gotten approval from the AEI to do this by pointing at the success, such as it was, of his previous collaborations with Schroeder.
There are interesting follow ups to be done here. For example, did Schroeder know that Ball was a co-author? Schroeder had also worked with Green when he was at the Reason Institute on an article about reducing global warming through agricultural practices. Why did Schroeder imply that he didn't interact much with Green at the Fraser Institute. Green was there between 2002 and 2005 and their joint article appeared July 2004 in a Fraser Institute publication, with Green identified as being at Fraser.
2. The idea that Schroeder was not afraid of the AEI distorting what he said is being supported by a quote from the Feb. 5 Washington Post, after the storm had started to gather
Schroeder, who has worked with Green in the past and has questioned some aspects of traditional climate modeling, said in an interview that he did not think AEI would have skewed his results. But he added that he worried his contribution might have been published alongside "off-the-wall ideas" questioning the existence of global warming.but he was specifically worried about people in the AEI distorting what he wrote, in a February 2 interview with the CBC
Well, I basically decided not to participate partly by talking to Gerald North, he got the same offer, he has worked with the same person before also and he was the one who mainly expressed to me that he felt that even if we could produce an objective report even if the contents weren't changed that it was likely to be misused by people either in the AEI or outside it3. The rubber really hits the road with the second letter in which (as the bunny pointed out) the $10K offer is conditional AND an upper limit. This is the letter that Green and Hayward are referring to. The first letter is (mostly) the one that Dessler and other bloggers point to.
The second letter is conditional
Above all we want to have a diverse collection of pre-eminent thinkers on this subject, which is why we are keen to include you in the project. AEI is willing to offer honoraria of up to $10,000 for participating authors, for essays in the range of 7,500 to 10,000 words, to be completed by September 1, and we are keen to work with you to refine an appropriate topic.In other words give us what we want or we won't pay you is clearly in that paragraph with the usual nod to implausible deniability. The AEI's position on climate change is no secret. Suffice it to say somewhat to the right of Ethon's snack which, is itself to the no climate change here and if there were all we can do is adapt side of the policy controversy. There is no statement as to how the payment would be determined, which leaves it up to the reader to read between the obvious lines.
We do not have a clue as to whom the second letter was sent. Green, in his CBC interview says that it was sent mostly to policy makers and economists, with a few scientists. The replies were to come September 1, 2006. Now, Eli is a quiet little domestic valentine bunny but this fairly shouts:
WHAT WERE THE REPLIES
There is a lot of good reporting still to be done.
UPDATE: Andrew Dessler in the comments points out an ambiguity that Eli left. While unsaid, it is probable that the two letters were sent at different times.