Hoover Institute and the art of slander

Thu, 2006-08-17 10:11Kevin Grandia
Kevin Grandia's picture

Hoover Institute and the art of slander

You know you're winning the PR battle when your adversary switches from attacking the message to attacking the messenger. Here's an example that also includes the common spin tactic of cherypicking: removing information from its context in an attempt to mislead. 

In a recent USA Today opinion piecePeter Schweizer, (a “Senior Fellow” at the oil money-laden Hoover Institute) tries to undermine Al Gore's efforts to enhance public education on climate change. Specifically, Schweizer pattacks Gore's personal committment to the reduction of green house gas - fair game as long as the accusation is accurate.

But Gore staff members criticize Schweizer's claims as either misleading or outright falsehoods.

For example:

Claim: Schweizer claims that Gore receives royalties from a zinc mine on his property.

Fact: Gore receives no royalties from the mine, which shut down in 2003. Like many owners of small farms in Smith County, Tennessee, the Gores received royalties on their mineral rights when the mine operated. (A correction ran in USA Today on page 10A, as did a letter to the editor from Gore's Communication Director)
—-
CLAIM:
Schweizer says that Gore controls stock in Occidental Petroleum.

FACT:
Gore has never owned or personally controlled stock in Occidental. His late father, Albert Gore Sr., worked at Occidental and the stock he owned at the time of his death was sold in the 1990s. Gore's mother also owned stock at the time of her death and it, too, was sold by the trustee of her estate.
—-
CLAIM:
Schweizer attacks Gore for not using green energy alternatives at his home.

FACT: The Gores have signed up for every “green power” option their utilities make available and are in the process of adding photovoltaic panels to their home.
—-
CLAIM: Schweizer says that Gore does not offset his carbon emissions because Paramount Classics pays for the offsets.

FACT: The Gore’s personal carbon offsets are achieved independently of and in addition to the carbon-neutral leadership shown by Paramount Classics, Participant Productions and Rodale.
—-
Makes you wonder who's paying for Schweizer's carbon offset…

In scouring about for every possible compromising detail, Schweizer fails to point out the fact that the Hoover Institute has received over $6.5 million from oil magnate Richard Mellon Scaife, through his Scaife Family of foundations. Nor does Mr. Schweizer mention the $295,000 his Institute has received from ExxonMobil.

The other PR technique the is applicable on this occasion is called the “echo chamber,” in which you try to build the credibility of a lie by repeating it. So far, Newsmax, NewbustersAmy Ridenour and CNN's Glenn Beck have rebroadcast this blather. Alas, it still isn't true.

Comments

<b> FACT: The Gores have signed up for every “green power” option their utilities make available and are in the process of adding photovoltaic panels to their home.</b>

 

More info on this please.   If a man has a 10,000-square-foot, 20-room, eight-bathroom home in Nashville, and a 4,000-square-foot home in Arlington it's not exactly ecofriendly to have 90% of your power from coal and 10% from solar.  As a conservationist, he should practice what he preaches.

It's hard to be filthy rich and environmentally bullet proof, no matter how much you spend in carbon offsets.

it does matter how much you spend on carbon offsets.
No matter how much carbon one person uses if he pays for ALL of it in the carbon market the net emission will be zero. That's what carbon neutral means.
This stupid Schweizer dismissed the whole idea of carbon markets. Why? Because that's the core idea of the Kyoto protocol as well, which of course he opposes.

Where does Schweizer get his data about Gore's houses?
The house in Virginia is not large at all. It is actually Tipper's house and it was owned by his mother who was not rich by any standard. It's very unlikely that she could afford a large house.

Moreover you can have a house as big as Missouri if you use very little energy in it and buy offsets for the amount you use it will be more "green" than an average 4-bedroom house.

Does Schweizer know how much time the Gores spend in the Virginia house? No he doesn't He just throws this number out, without showing the source and suggesting that a bunch of energy is used in the house -- again without any evidence to back up  his claim. The reader is supposed to believe this just because Schweizer says so? Hello?

Gore's Tennessee house is not that big at all. I actually saw it and Schweizer exaggerates. But again, what matters is how much energy they use in the house and how much they pay for offsets. Does Schweizer know that? He doesn't. He just pulls things out of his ass, a shit newspaper publish it and from then on it becomes the Gospel.

I can't tell you how many times I've seen this when it comes to Gore. The truth absolutely does not matter to people when he is the topic.

I though the whole point of “going green” was to use less also. Does Gore or anybody else really need to use all of the energy or resources that they do, even if he can buy “carbon offsets”. The CO2 is still being emitted only Al can feel better because he has money to give people that would never have emitted anyhow thus still a net sum gain in CO2 toneage. I could care less about Gore, Bush, Armand Hammer, or Richard Scaife. There is no doubt that AL has reaped benefits from “Big Oil” and that he jumped on the Environmental bandwagon for personal gain. Facts are facts. I truly believe in sustainable living. Al Gore probably has an eco footprint of 100 planets, but he makes himself feel better by purchasing offsets. If he is not weaseling around that too. The point is Bush and Gore are both full of crap. Bush just doesn’t hide it some much. Taking payoffs from monks! Is there any lower a man can go. Yes he profits from Occidential also.

Hey Al doesn't have that big of house but Sen Frist is building a 15,ooo sq ft house with 9 large fireplaces and using N.H. Pink Granite or is it CO State pink Granite and lots of marble on the Facade and no green power whatsoever.

It would be a good idea not to knock somebody you don't know anything about.We have a 12 step problem of denial in this country and its coming from the profiteer companies and their supporters.

 

Also someone needs to ask Sen Alexandder why he is against Mexicans since his new home was built by Mexicans Labors.....