Campaign ties global warming believers to ‘murderers and madmen’

Source: Jean Chemnick, E&E reporter • Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012

The craggy face of the “Unabomber,” Ted Kaczynski, stares at Chicago drivers from a billboard over the Eisenhower Expressway.

“I still believe in global warming. Do you?” is the question that appears next to the murderer’s 1995 booking photo.

The digital billboard, which appeared yesterday, is the latest effort by the Heartland Institute, a conservative Chicago think tank, to discredit the scientific underpinnings of man-made climate change ahead of its annual conference in Chicago this month.

Heartland says it paid for billboards featuring Kaczynski, mass murderer Charles Manson and Cuban dictator Fidel Castro to make a point that “rogues and villains” believe in climate change. The series will expand soon, the group said, to include Osama bin Laden and Discovery Channel hostage taker James Lee.

“Because what these murderers and madmen have said differs very little from what spokespersons for the United Nations, journalists for the ‘mainstream’ media, and liberal politicians say about global warming,” the Heartland website says.

“Believing in global warming is not ‘mainstream,’ smart, or sophisticated,” it continues. “In fact, some really crazy people use it to justify immoral and frightening behavior.”

Kaczynski killed three people and injured 23 others during a letter-bomb campaign that lasted nearly two decades. He also submitted a 35,000-word manifesto to the New York Times and the Washington Post criticizing political liberals and conservatives and the industrialized society in general.

The words “climate change” don’t appear in the manifesto, nor are there references to “global warming” or “carbon.”

Asked about this discrepancy, Heartland spokesman Jim Lakely pointed to a passage from Kaczynski’s manifesto that says the Industrial Revolution has “inflicted severe damage on the natural world.”