What does it mean when governments pay lobbyists to lobby for policies that the government itself wants to implement? What does it mean when they call those lobbyists “independent.”
While you’re thinking about that, consider this report, from Europe:
Green pressure groups get €66 million from the EU
“Have you ever wondered why the eco-lobby is so pro-EU? Now you have your answer. Green pressure groups are becoming financially dependent on Brussels. Ten years ago, they received €2,337,924 from the European Commission; last year, it was €8,749,940.
“A study by the International Policy Network reveals the extent to which Green lobbyists look to the EU for their income: Climate Action Network, Friends of the Earth, WWF, they’re all at it. Much of this money, the paper shows, is then recycled into lobbying the EU.
“You see how the system works? The EU pays eco-lobbyists to tell it what it wants to hear. Its clients, naturally enough, tell it that the EU ought to increase its powers. A similar racket goes on between Brussels and the mega-charities (see here).”
Just to clarify, the top ten recipients of European taxpayers’ money for telling European governments what they want to hear are:
Green 10 Members
Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) Bankwatch Network
Climate Action Network Europe (CAN-E)
European Environment Bureau (EEB)
Transport and Environment (T&E)
Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL)
Friends of the Earth Europe (FoEE)
International Friends of Nature (IFN)
WWF European Policy Office (WWF-EPO)
And that’s just in Europe. (Think about that the next time some charming young thing on a street-corner rattles a Greenpeace collection can under your nose. Or they complain about how much Exxon supposedly is paying all us global warming skeptics.)
And while you’re thinking about that, just consider that the same things happens all round the world (here, as just a few examples, think Association of Smoking Hysterics (ASH), the wowsers of ALAC, the Fight the Obesity Epidemic anorexics, Gary Taylor’s anti-development Environmental Defence Society, Guy Salmon’s pro-government Ecologic, and—once again--Greenpeace).
And in the States, as just one example,
“The Competitive Enterprise Institute has uncovered, via a Freedom of Information Act request, a fascinating instance of the symbiotic relationship among 1) left-wing advocacy groups, 2) left-wing Obama administration officials, and 3) lobbyists for moneyed interests who benefit from left-wing policies. It has to do with wind energy…
“Emails obtained under the Freedom of Information Act show that the Obama Department of Energy is using the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) -- the lobbying arm of "Big Wind" in the U.S. -- to coordinate political responses with two strongly ideological activist groups: the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), and the George Soros funded Center for American Progress (CAP).”
As the Powerline blog asks: Where do the lobbyists end and the government begin?
The same could be asked in every country, of nearly every environmental lobbyist.
And if the word “corruption” occurred to you while you were thinking about all this, then I think your answer to my first question is going to be in the right ballpark.
Al Bore’s Generation Investment Management (GIM)
World Resources Institute
Bank of America
World Rainforest Movement
Resources for the Future
Woods Hole Research Center
“When a non-profit group takes money from oil companies and advocates drilling for oil as a solution to energy shortages, it is certain to be attacked as a tool of Big Oil. So far, the groups linked to Al Gore have avoided similar scrutiny.”
Why is that, do you think?