The Weekend Wonk: Marc Morano and the Merchants of Doubt

November 22, 2014

I interviewed Marc Morano, one of the country’s most visible climate denial operatives, at the 2012 Heartland Institute Denia Palooza conference in Chicago.

Might be worth reviewing, as Morano was formerly a key operative and associate of Senator James Inhofe, who will be taking control of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee in a few weeks.

Morano was amazingly forthcoming in the interview. In fact, I could hardly shut him up.  I’ve heard that there will be some pretty revealing footage of Mr. Morano in the upcoming “Merchants of Doubt”, which will focus on the parallels between fossil funded climate denial, and tobacco science denial. Clip here.

Finally, history review. My 2010 video below mentions Morano’s role in the anti-intellectual orgasm that followed the non-scandal of scientist’s stolen emails.


8 Responses to “The Weekend Wonk: Marc Morano and the Merchants of Doubt”

  1. climatehawk1 Says:

    Morano seems pretty strange. It’s as if he thinks this is a video game or something.

    • dumboldguy Says:

      Morano is more than “pretty strange” and IS almost playing a part in a video game—-“Grand Theft of Truth About AGW”, perhaps? Or “Call to BS: Fossil Fuel Shills”?

      I love this video clip and enjoy watching Peter draw, quarter, and flay Morano alive while he barely realizes what is being done to him. Many memorable pieces of Morano bullshit in there:

      “…soft middle ground…”
      “…tongue in cheek…”
      “…I’m just joking…”
      ………..and my favorite
      “…rainbow of ideas…”

      Morano’s “Tony Soprano persona” is total BS also. He was raised in McLean, VA, a rather wealthy and tony DC suburb occupied by people who may be crooks, but of a far different sort than Tony Soprano—-right wing lobbyists and think-tankers and congresspersons. He has a bachelor’s degree in political science from George Mason, the residents of which institution would likely crap their pants at the sight of a genuine “Soprano”.

      I grew up in “Sopranoland” in NJ and regularly drove past most of the places shown on the program. I knew a number of “Sopranos”, and Morano would have been eaten alive by any one of them over the age of 14. The only thing he has in common with them is an Italian last name. Morano is as big a fraud and gasbag as Limbaugh and Beck, and the real “Sopranos” would have slapped the s**t out of him for bringing dishonor on Italian-Americans.

  2. You warmists can actually learn and get inspired by deniers like me:

  3. mbrysonb Says:

    He clearly enjoys his work: policy as a vicious high-school popularity contest, with no thought that there might be real consequences. Of course for him being a paid jerk instead of just a jerk makes it all worthwhile. The Baffler has done a good job covering the right-wing grifter element.

  4. neilrieck Says:

    39-second extract from the December-2014 movie “MERCHANTS OF DOUBT”
    quote: Asbestos, Global Warming, DDT, Acid Rain, Tobacco, Ozone. There is a bit of a mystery [as] to what all these things have in common. All these issues are issues that involve the need for government action. That is when the penny dropped because then I began to realize that none of this is about the science. All of this is a political debate about the roll of government. So in a number of places we actually found these people saying: they see environmentalists as creeping communists, they see them as reds under the bed, they call them watermelons; green on the outside and red on the inside. And they worry that environmental regulation will be a slippery slope to socialism.
    NSR Comment: so there you have it in one paragraph. Just as a non-trivial fraction of 1950’s North America willfully fell under the spell of McCarthyism, the same thing is happening today with the environment. I wonder how much permanent damage will occur before the majority wakes up from “this madness”

    • dumboldguy Says:

      Naomi gets it! I’m in the middle of reading Merchants of Doubt. It is a symptom of the “madness” of people like that fool Russell Cook that he would hold up the book and say “….in this one sentence on page 289 is the ABSOLUTE PROOF that global warming is a hoax….”.

      Of course it’s all about politics and the fear of regulation (for the greater good) by government. How can the greedy rich and the free-marketers exploit everyone and everything on the planet if someone is saying “No, you can’t do that” to them? You’ve got to spend $$$ to make $$$$$$, and there is no better bargain for them than to buy politicians and government.

      • “….in this one sentence on page 289 is the ABSOLUTE PROOF that global warming is a hoax….”

        Notice how commenter “dumboldguy” literally cannot find a single instance in all of my online material where I have ever said any such thing? What I point to is, for example, on page 34 of Ross Gelbspan’s hardcover vs paperback version, that the man literally contradicts his own works from one version to the next. That’s just one example out of myriad ones from the material you all hold dear, and not one of you has yet to refute the contradictions I point to, let alone comprehend how damaging those contradictions are to the political narrative that skeptic scientists are paid shills of the fossil fuel industry.

        The introspection you’ll have to consider is why AGW promoters have a compulsion to make assertions that imploded in their faces. Wouldn’t it be far more effective if – in this case – “dumboldguy” actually had evidence to support his assertion?

        • dumboldguy Says:

          “…in this one sentence on page 289 is the ABSOLUTE PROOF that global warming is a hoax….”

          Guess what, Russell, I was just mocking you with the “page 289” reference. That number was PFTA solely for that purpose, and I just looked at my copy of Merchants of Doom and discovered that it’s actually back in the “notes” section of the book. Of course, any footnote of Naomi’s is worth far more than many pages of Russell’s denier shill BS should anyone go look there.

          I actually got the idea for the “page 289” mockery while viewing Russell’s performance at the Heartland Institute conference last July. One of Russell’s tricks is holding up a book, pointing to a page, and spouting incoherent BS, so I thought I’d poke some fun at that..

          I suggest that we all check out Russell’s “performance” here (including holding up and fumbling through books), which he begins by acknowledging that he knows NO science, has NO expertise, and is just a “guy who wandered in off the street”. And that’s just who the Heartlanders want to hear from, apparently, because they actually “invited” him to speak as an individual and sit on panels. No “pay” of course, but a fancy hotel room and meals instead. I guess the $18K per year is a retainer? This 5-month old video clip has only 386 views, so go there and boost Russell’s “hit count”.

          You can find more “Russell LIVE” if you google his name and “Youtube Heartland”. Perhaps you will agree with me when I say that he needs to ditch the stupid visor, get some clothes that are color-coordinated and actually fit, and take some public speaking lessons. That might keep him from looking and sounding like an intoxicated HOMELESS “guy who wandered in off the street”.

          (If you do view some of the “Russell (hardly) ALIVE” Youtube clips, be sure to read the comments. Russell gets into some great debates with a lot of folks who commented on his “performances” and they all kick his ass!)

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