It’s Clean, Cheap, and Creates Jobs. And That is Exactly Why WindBaggers Hate it.

May 9, 2012

Last July I wrote in a post –

I can’t prove that the anti-science “Windbagger” movement is part of the larger right wing astro-turf campaign organized by fossil fuel and Koch-funded interests -yet – but their tactics certainly are reminiscent of what we’ve been seeing elsewhere.

The Guardian: 

A network of ultra-conservative groups is ramping up an offensive on multiple fronts to turn the American public against wind farms and Barack Obama’s energy agenda.
A number of rightwing organisations, including Americans for Prosperity, which is funded by the billionaire Koch brothers, are attacking Obama for his support for solar and wind power. The American Legislative Exchange Council (Alec), which also has financial links to the Kochs, has drafted bills to overturn state laws promoting wind energy.
Now a confidential strategy memo seen by the Guardian advises using “subversion” to build a national movement of wind farm protesters.
The strategy proposal was prepared by a fellow of the American Tradition Institute (ATI) – although the thinktank has formally disavowed the project.
The proposal was discussed at a meeting of self-styled ‘wind warriors’ from across the country in Washington DC last February.
“These documents show for the first time that local Nimby anti-wind groups are co-ordinating and working with national fossil-fuel funded advocacy groups to wreck the wind industry,” said Gabe Elsner, a co-director of the Checks and Balances, the accountability group which unearthed the proposal and other documents.
Among its main recommendations, the proposal calls for a national PR campaign aimed at causing “subversion in message of industry so that it effectively because so bad that no one wants to admit in public they are for it.”
It suggests setting up “dummy businesses” to buy anti-wind billboards, and creating a “counter-intelligence branch” to track the wind energy industry. It also calls for spending $750,000 to create an organisation with paid staff and tax-exempt status dedicated to building public opposition to state and federal government policies encouraging the wind energy industry.
The involvement of far-right wing extremist groups explains how supporters of wind energy, a large majority – have come under increasing attack with verbal abuse and even threats.

Owen Sound (Ontario) Sun Times reports:

Some local wind-energy supporters say the more they speak out, the more verbal abuse and threats they receive, despite evidence of widespread backing for turbines in Ontario.

Ripley-area farmer and wind energy supporter Jutta Splettstoesser noted an Ipsos Reid poll conducted last July that surveyed 1,361 adults across Ontario and indicated 89% of those surveyed support wind energy in their region of the province.

“We know there is a silent majority out there that supports wind and this just proves it,” she said during a recent meeting at her family farm near Ripley.

But wind-power supporters say rhetoric from opponents is becoming more strident and personal.

Just as far right wing groups have opposed all positive social change during the last century, including child labor laws, women’s rights, and racial equality, we can expect that as renewable energy makes further inroads into the system, the right wind hate-machine will continue to crank up.

Desmogblog has more, and a link to the memo here.

22 Responses to “It’s Clean, Cheap, and Creates Jobs. And That is Exactly Why WindBaggers Hate it.”

  1. daveburton Says:

    It’s Clean, Cheap, and Creates Jobs. And That is Exactly Why WindBaggers Hate fracked natural gas: because it makes wind energy even more wildly uncompetitive.

    • bobinchiclana Says:

      I think you have got a little confused Dave. “Windbagger” refers to the anti wind movement. But hey maybe they hate Fracked Gas as well!

      • bobchewie Says:

        bless him bob, he gets charts and diagrams wrong too..oh well

        • greenman3610 Says:

          It’s a Bob Jones University thing.

          • bobchewie Says:

            that would be funny if i knew who bob jones was, hey peter we dont all live in the US

          • greenman3610 Says:

            I am not making this url up.

            http://www.bju.edu/

          • Mike Says:

            Peter I couldn’t resist. This is from BJU’s undergrad courses page for Molecular Biology. I especially like the first learning objective.

            “Students graduating from the biochemistry and molecular biology program will either pursue graduate studies in one or both of these areas or take entry-level positions in biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, forensics, medical research or related industries. This program requires a 66 hour combination of chemistry (33 hours), biology (24 hours) and physics (9 hours).

            Learning Objectives
            Explain and defend in writing the biblical philosophy of science.
            Explain in writing why science is limited as a way of knowing truth.
            Employ the scientific method in designing controlled experiments in the laboratory to answer scientific questions.
            Interpret and critique experimental data both orally and in writing.
            Describe in writing the processes of energy transduction and exchange within living organisms, including the energetics of metabolism.
            Explain the chemical and physical properties of substances in terms of chemical concepts and principles.
            Solve problems by use of both mathematical and general scientific problem- solving skills in a variety of lecture and laboratory contexts.
            Use modern computer-based molecular modeling methods to solve problems.”

      • daveburton Says:

        How silly. To “bag” something is to capture it. Windbaggers are, therefore, people who want to capture wind energy.

        Any other questions?

        • bobchewie Says:

          dave..you just dont get this language thing do you??

          a windbag is a person who shouts a lot full of crap basically..hasnt got a clue what the feck they are on about..
          you know..the tea party/faux news/beck etc

          full of hot air….ok…

          • Mike Says:

            Hi Bob, in this case the “bag” has another meaning also, at least here in Australia. To ‘bag’ something is to speak negatively about something. So to me when I read “windbaggers” I picture people, full of hot air, speaking negatively about windpower for a very long time.

        • bobinchiclana Says:

          I think you need to take that up with them, but the clue about the nature of the organisation is in the first sentence “the anti-science Windbaggers”.

          I suppose goes to show that it pays to read the article, then you might learn something.

  2. bobchewie Says:


  3. […] change problem. This is because there are some very powerful special vested interests (see this very recent post on Climate Denial Crock of the Week) behind the disinformation campaign that feeds on the ignorance […]


  4. Hi, I refer you to this blog
    http://rachel122333.wordpress.com/2012/04/12/hollow-words/
    which concerns a ‘charity’ helping poor locals object to wind farm planning permission. Although locally there is a pro-wind group and half the planning has now been granted. A community fund is available which when used within a charitable trust will be means to reduce fuel poverty locally and help reduce consumption.

    but it is a mad world out there, James Delingpole who can be loosely described as a journalist has reposted a story of wind turbines, depressed dogs, yolk less eggs and misery in a town called Waterloo in Australia. But you don’t need big oil, there are plenty of people out there who make wind their business with the usual collection of falsehoods.

    Maybe acceptance of wind turbines also requires acceptance of AGW.


  5. […] People protesting about solutions In the course of yesterday’s post, ‘Ignorance is the enemy of humanity’, I linked to an item on Climate Denial Crock of the Week that highlighted a report in the UK’s Guardian newspaper suggesting that a group of ultra-conservatives “is ramping up an offensive on multiple fronts to turn the American public against wind farms and Barack Obama’s energy agenda” . See https://climatecrocks.com/2012/05/09/its-clean-cheap-and-creates-jobs-and-that-is-exactly-why-windbag…. […]


  6. […] It’s Clean, Cheap, and Creates Jobs. And That is Exactly Why WindBaggers Hate it. (climatecrocks.com) […]


  7. Sometimes perception isn’t reality. In the province of Ontario the wind industry IS the fossil fuel industry. Suncor, Epcor, TransAlta and Enbridge are all big players in the Ontario wind industry, and they are all involved in either tar sands production, coal generated electricity or natural gas and oil pipelines. Wind energy is just a bonus revenue stream for these fossil fuel corporations, courtesy of the suckers of Ontario.


  8. these people discredit any attempt at renewable energy..


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