The Carter Controversy

by Gareth on March 1, 2012

The strange case of the cranks who think that suing scientists is the way to make warming go away — or the New Zealand Climate “Science Education Trust” versus the National Institute of Water and Atmosphere Research (NIWA) — grinds on like a modern day Jarndyce and Jarndyce. The NZCSET (being Barry Brill, Terry Dunleavy, Bryan Leyland, all leading members of the Heartland-funded NZ Climate “Science” Coalition) have helpfully put their submissions to the High Court on their web site, and I stumbled on something interesting. Bob Carter provides a sworn affidavit in support of the NZ CSET case, in which he says:

I, Robert Merlin Carter, of Townsville in Queensland, Australia, research professor, make oath and say:

2. […] I receive no research funding from special interest organisations such as environmental groups, energy companies or government departments.

The Heartland Institute’s budget document, as presented to its January board meeting and recently made public, includes the following table of payments slated for key players in Fred Singer’s Not the IPCC project:

BudgetNIPCCCarter

Bob will receive US$1,667 per month in his role as a co-editor of the next NIPCC report, due out in 2013. A cynic might ask if Bob’s sworn statement to the High Court is entirely compatible with his Heartland funding. I am sure that Professor Carter did not intend to mislead the Court by representing himself as a disinterested commentator on climate matters. But he did swear his affidavit a month before the Heartland budget document was made public…

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Thomas March 1, 2012 at 11:30 pm

Oh, dear. I guess the weasel Carter will try to twist himself though this one by saying: “Its just on the 2012 budget, doesn’t mean I got it, besides who would have ever though that the Heartland Institute is an environmental group, an energy company or part of the government, no no, the Heartland institute is in fact something much more nefarious than that. Its a libertarian shady lobby group with connections to the tobacco industry and is acting on behalf of anonymous black hat big pocket conspirators, and I didn’t swear I wouldn’t take money from those, as of cause I am one of them and as libertarians we do stick together through any lies and jist to fight for our patch you see ….”

MikeH March 2, 2012 at 8:50 pm

Carter has confirmed that he received money from Heartland

Professor Carter did not deny he was being paid by The Heartland Institute, but would not confirm the amount, or if the think tank expected anything in return for its money.

http://www.theage.com.au/environment/climate-change/scientist-accepts-cash-for-climate-20120215-1t7ho.html

Macro March 3, 2012 at 11:02 am

“or if the think tank expected anything in return for its money. ”

Except as a Co-editor along with Craig and Fred. So I suppose they would have expected something in return wouldn’t they.

Roger Dewhurst March 5, 2012 at 12:43 pm

“2. […] I receive no research funding from special interest organisations such as environmental groups, energy companies or government departments.”

Heartland is not an environmental group.

Heartland is not an energy company.

Heartland is not a government department.

Heartland’s interests are so varied that they cannot be described as special.

Editing is not research.

Try reading his affidavit.

Macro March 5, 2012 at 8:06 pm

But Roger, Heartland is a special interest (self interest would perhaps be the more correct term) organisation, and it does host “conferences” on Climate “Science”, so it could be argued that it is an environmental group – albeit one directly opposed to environmental protection.

John Mashey March 2, 2012 at 7:07 am

As per Fake science, …, p.34, note that Carter was the 2nd author on the 2011 NIPCC report, and p.36 includes past activities with Heartland … so I would suggest that quite possibly, payments to Carter may have occurred before 2012.

Of course, I rather doubt any funding he ever got from heartland was for anything a scientist would call “research.” Hmm, I wonder if the NZ court can ask for Heartland’s records, like seen in Fig . H.3.1-2 and H.4, pp.63-64: a bunch of money went outside the US in 2008 and 2009 to vague regions that could include AU and NZ, besides the specifics in 2007 that went to NZ puppets.

Macro March 2, 2012 at 10:47 am

I was a juror on a case in the NZ High Court brought by the Serious Fraud Office, in this case, digital account records from around the world were presented as evidence.
In the case of the “sudden millionaire” and his partner who absconded to China, I’m sure the Police will present as evidence the account records – both from here and China.

Thomas March 2, 2012 at 7:36 pm

Who would bring a prosecution? Would simply handing this information to the police trigger it?

Gareth March 2, 2012 at 8:18 pm

I suspect that it would be up to the judge in the case to decide whether Carter was in trouble.

Australis March 3, 2012 at 1:11 am

A prosecution? For What? Is this post suggesting Professor Bob Carter is guilty of some sort of criminal offence by earning a (modest) fee for his writings?

Gareth, is it your position that all journalists/commentators/authors/editors who receive a fee or honorarium (or wages for that matter) should be reported to the police? Or is your odium reserved for those who are funded to undertake research?

Where do you people pick up your ideas?

CTG March 3, 2012 at 8:01 am

Never heard of perjury, Australis?

cyclone March 3, 2012 at 8:17 am

Lying under oath. Can’t do that.

He also lies when over, beside, before, and after oath too.

Gareth March 3, 2012 at 9:24 am

Australis, what wonderful blinkers/blinders you wear. They go so beautifully with your rose-tinted glasses.

See my comment below.

andyS March 3, 2012 at 8:51 am

Does being paid a small fee for being co-editor of the NIPCC report count as “research funding”?

If not, then technically, Bob Carter would appear to be making a truthful statement.

Gareth March 3, 2012 at 9:22 am

That may be Bob’s escape route, yes, though it will be up to a judge to decide. But why make the statement at all? He could have made his sworn statement without making any reference to his sources of funding.

It’s clear he is trying to give the impression that he is not funded by special interests – but as we can see, he most certainly is.

By the way, if US$20,000 per annum is a “small fee” then I’d like to know what a large one is. Perhaps Idso’s?

andyS March 3, 2012 at 9:36 am

Yes I have to agree there with your first statement Gareth. It would have been wiser to either leave the information out, or declare everything up front.

Small fee? Well I guess it depends on how much you think you are worth, but by professional fee standards these are small figures. I imagine that the legal fees would eclipse Bob Carter’s fees.

Rob Taylor March 3, 2012 at 10:03 am

For once, I agree with andyS – by the scale of fees for professional liars and PR flacks, Bob Carter could do better.

Of course, other fossil fuel interests may be greasing his palm as well. Heartland is but one of many.

Cadae March 8, 2012 at 1:31 pm

A controversy ? Really ?

Note the qualifier “research” in “no research funding”.

Paragraph 7 states:
… I also act as scientific advisor on climate change to a number of independent think tanks, including …

Bob Carter can easily (and probably rightfully) claim that he’s being paid as a scientific advisor and editor to Heartland, not a researcher.

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