Are the Swift Boaters Mounting a Stealth Climate Attack?

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Creative Response Concepts, the public relations firm behind the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth smear campaign, appears to be mounting an under-the-radar attack on climate action via Twitter. They just don’t want me to know what they’re up to.

Staffers over at CRC have been tweeting furiously on global warming issues for the past few months—attacking not only climate legislation but climate science.

A few examples, from CRC senior vice president Michael Russell:

UN Scientist admits issuing phony climate data to put pressure on world leaders http://bit.ly/7s6ezP #tcot

SF Chronicle on Copenhagen climate summit – many arrived in carbon burning private jets and limos http://bit.ly/4ZNvok #tcot cap and trade

Economist, author,Thomas Sowell writes on the “Science Mantra” of global warming and its hysteria. http://bit.ly/90D5kz #tcot cap and trade

CRC president Greg Mueller and account associate Marianne Brennan have also been hyping up stories about the “ClimateGate” hacked emails and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s inaccurate glacier data.

So who is CRC working for? It’s not clear if their Twitter efforts are independent or on behalf of a particular client, though their list includes many players seeking to undermine climate science. The firm’s clients have included the National Republican Congressional Committee, National Taxpayers Union, Republican National Committee, Free Enterprise Foundation, American International Automobile Dealers Assoc., Corn Refiners Association, and the creationists at the Discovery Institute. CRC also has close ties with the conservative media machine, using avenues like the Drudge Report and Cybercast News Service to push the Swift Boat story. I called CRC headquarters to find out more about their climate campaign, but Russell didn’t return calls—and then blocked me from following him on Twitter. Of course, like anyone else I can still access the CRC staffers’ Twitter page. Is there something that CRC wants to hide?

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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