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An Instance of Warmist Corruption

by John Hinderacker     •      Powerline

Corruption TransparencyWe have often written about the fact that the world’s governments pour billions of dollars annually into the global warming project, the object of which is to increase the powers of government. And yet governments, the main parties that stand to benefit from the warmists’ campaign, pretend that their money is somehow innocent, while any private entity that supports climate research is suspect.

Alarmist scientists have gone so far as to urge the Obama administration to prosecute criminally scientists who disagree with them. The premise for this proposed RICO investigation was that “corporations in the fossil fuel industry and their supporters”–i.e., scientists who don’t buy the global warming hype–are deceiving the public for financial gain. This despicable effort, which we wrote about here, is led by Jagadish Shukla of George Mason University and several of his colleagues.

That inspired curiosity about Shukla’s own funding. The results, while incomplete, are striking. Shukla is remarkably well paid by George Mason, for a professor. His salary is currently around $314,000 a year. But that isn’t the half of it. Steve McIntyre writes that Shukla set up a “non-profit” entity, the Institute for Global Environment and Security, Inc. (IGES), to which the federal government has funneled millions of dollars. IGES operates as a slush fund for Shukla and his family; not only is Shukla on the payroll, apparently double-dipping in violation of university regulations, but his wife and daughter also draw substantial income from the “non-profit.”

McIntyre estimates Shukla’s 2014 income from this scheme at more than a million dollars, but Anthony Watts says that calculation is too low. Watts also points out that the taxpayers’ $4.2 million has more or less disappeared:

There’s apparently an $800,000 annual salary and an organization full of Shukla family members that has produced next to no results for the millions received. Even NSF on their own web page acknowledges that only one paper has been produced out of a 4.2 million dollar grant.

If someone paid me a million dollars a year, I would at least produce some bogus, government-serving science once in a while.

This apparent corruption has piqued the interest of a congressional committee, which has issued an order prohibiting the destruction of documents by IGES and an IGES subsidiary called COLA which is also involved in various cash transfers. There is more to the story, which you can read at the links.

My guess is that similar stories of corruption and sudden wealth could be told about many or most of the people involved in promoting global warming hysteria, both scientists and others. The federal government spends billions of dollars a year to promote warming alarmism. That money doesn’t build any factories or create other tangible assets, it consists overwhelmingly of checks that ultimately are written to individuals. And their family members, as we see in the Shukla case. The whole enterprise is rotten to the core, starting with the fact that Al Gore has scammed hundreds of millions of dollars by feeding easily-debunked misinformation to the public.

Perhaps a congressional investigation of Jagadish Shukla’s million dollar a year slush fund–and that’s just what we know about so far–will begin to lift the lid on the worst scientific scandal of all time. In the meantime, ponder the fact that Shukla wants to send the scientists who rebut his vacuous theories to jail. With a million dollars a year (at least) at stake, it’s no wonder.