Globe and Mail: Ad campaign takes aim at climate change

Spurred on by a speech that Jim Hoggan gave to the Canadian Empire Club in Toronto (talking about our new book, Climate Cover-up), Canada’s national newspaper, the Globe and Mail, started asking questions today about who is paying for the big Friends of Science radio ad campaign that has been annoying Canadians from coast to coast for the last week or so.

The Globe’s Martin Mittelstaedt had no success finding a live representative from the Friends of Science to deny their oily connections, but Marty Ball told Mittelstaedt this about her infamous husband, the truth-challenged Tim Ball: “He’s not paid by the oil companies. He’s never had anything from them and neither [have] the Friends of Science.”

Alas for the Balls’ self-delusion, Mittelstaedt’s own paper has reported quite the opposite in the past, quoting a Friends official, Albert Jacobs, as saying that the oil and gas industry is exactly where they got their money.

Ball, of course, went on to work for the Natural Resources Stewardship Project, which was established and financed by the energy industry lobby firm, the High Park Group. At some point, Ball is going to have to admit all this to his wife - and to the credulous character in the mirror.

In the meantime, we all should be demanding that these kind of disingenuous and politically motivated radio ads come with disclaimers stating the identity and the self-interest of the people behind the message. There is, otherwise, a risk that someone might take them seriously.


Who cares. Attacking the messenger not the message is the last vetige of the dambed. I guess when the message the is putting out is indisputable this is the only way to go after them. BTW do you really think that any company cares wether cap and trade or some carbon tax is implemented? They will not suffer it just gets passed on down to the consuer who ends up footing the bill. We will all be poor freezing in the dark, imperial oil will be doing just fine.

These companies, members of USCAP
“New members of this unique alliance include AES, Alstom, Boston Scientific Corporation, Chrysler, ConocoPhillips, Deere & Company, The Dow Chemical Company, Exelon Corporation, Ford Motor Company, General Motors, Johnson & Johnson, The Nature Conservancy, NRG Energy, PepsiCo, Rio Tinto, Shell, and Siemens Corporation.
Founding members of USCAP include a number of major corporations: Alcoa, BP America, Caterpillar, Duke Energy, DuPont, FPL Group, General Electric, PG&E Corporation and PNM Resources — and four non-governmental organizations including: Environmental Defense, Natural Resources Defense Council, Pew Center on Global Climate Change and World Resources Institute.”

You are an idiot or maybe a twitidiot. Your view is to never answer the question but to just attack in a personal manner. Shame on you.

What caught my eye was that the G&M story was about the controversy, and not about the rightness or wrongness of the ad’s claim.

Since the goal of the industry is to convince us that controversy and uncertainty exist (and so we should “go slow”) the G&M’s story aids the industry far more that the reading public.

Not much to celebrate there. :(

It’s good that the FoS resurgence is finally starting to get some scrutiny from the press. Back in July when I first blogged about FoS coming back, few were paying attention.

For a list of likely radio stations (three confirmed and more to come), see my latest post at Deep Climate:

I especially invite anyone who has heard the ads to comment to confirm the station used in each city.

Many of the stations appear to be in the Corus network, while others appear to be the same ones used in the anti-Kyoto campaign aimed at key ridings in Ontario during the 2006 election campaign that brought Stephen Harper to power.

And, as in the case of the Monckton tour, indications are pointing to the usual suspects: oil and gas lobbyist and Conservative insider Morten Paulsen, along with the Calgary Foundation. What a surprise.

Thanks to you, Richard, and Kevin and Jim, too, for keeping the spotlight on FoS.

Why is it that politically motivated radio ads can get away with out a disclaimer. In any other situation like this the person who has created the ad would have to put a disclaimer. We all know they are benefiting by the points they are making so a simple disclaimer making this clear might make the average joe think a bit more before believing. Also the ads themselves might change.

david black