The Heartland Institute

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Group.png The Heartland Institute   Sourcewatch WebsiteRdf-icon.png
Heartland Institute Logo.png
Formation2006
FounderDavid Padden
Typethink tank
SloganIdeas that empower people

The Heartland Institute says its mission “is to help build social movements in support of ideas that empower people. Such ideas include parental choice in education, market-based approaches to environmental protection, privatization of public services, and deregulation in areas where property rights and markets do a better job than government bureaucracies".

Funding

Unlike many right-wing think tanks Heartland publishes a list of all recent foundation and corporate funders. The following is not a full list that can be found on their web-site. The list is current as of January 2003.

Foundations include:

BP Amoco Foundation Inc. The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation
Charlotte and Walter Kohler Charitable Trust ExxonMobil Foundation
Federalist Society Fundamental Change in Education
General Motors Foundation The Heritage Foundation

Corporations include:

Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers Allied Capital Inc.
American Farm Bureau Federation American Highway Users Alliance
American Petroleum Institute American Plastics Council
Anheuser-Busch APCO Worldwide
Asphalt Institute Bahr Company
Baise, Miller & Freer, P.C. Boehm-Madisen Lumber Co.
Brunstad Logging Cambridge Homes
CA Portland Cement Co. Chemical Manufacturers Association
Chevron Corporation Chicago Equity Fund
Chicagoland Construction Chlorine Chemistry Council
Citgo Petroleum Corporation Dabar Builders, Inc.
DaimlerChrysler Corporation Fund Daley & Associates
DCI Group Dart Transit Company
DeKalb County Farm Bureau Electric Metering Co.
The Energy Group, Inc. Enon Beach
Exxon Mobil Corporation Ford Motor Company
Forest Resources Association Forestry Services Co.
Franco-Nevada Mining Fur Commission USA
Gallagher Asphalt Geary Construction Inc.
General Motors Corp. Greening Earth Society
Homebuilders Association of Illinois Illinois Farm Bureau
Indiana Manufacturers Association Integrated Forest Management
International Truck & Engine Corp. Japanese Auto Professional Service
Marathon Ashland Petroleum McWilliams & Associates
Microsoft Miller Brewing Co.
Missouri Farm Bureau Morningside Equities Group, Inc.
National Communications Inc. Occidental Chemical Corporation
Pharmaceutical Research & Manufacturers of America Philip Morris Companies
Phillips Petroleum Co. Procter & Gamble Co.
The Railroad Tie Association R.J Reynolds Tobacco Co.
Taxpayers for Fair Zoning Taxpayers Network Inc.
Texas Farm Bureau Texas Medical Plans
TLC Florist & Greenhouses Inc. Trapper Mining
Union Carbide Weyerhauser Corp.
Whole Foods Market Midwest Wilson Farms
W.W. Meters, Inc. Wyndham Deerpoint Homes
Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation  

Principals

  • Joseph L. Bast -President and CEO. Bast is co-author of “EcoSanity – A Common Sense Guide to Environmentalism”, which argues the following on key environmental issues:

Global Warming: “global warming is not an environmental crisis.” CFCs: “If ever the environmental movement abandons common sense, it did so in its campaign against CFCS .. the ban on CFC may represent the movement’s most embarrassing moment” .

Acid Rain: “Once again, billions of dollars are wasted battling a problem that doesn’t exist”

Deforestation: “Current rates of deforestation are not likely to destroy more than a barely perceptible fraction of the Earth’s remaining rainforests”.

Nuclear power: “An honest evaluation of nuclear power shows it to be a safe and clean source of energy”.

Pesticides: “ The fact that pesticides have not been shown to cause any human injury signals that toxic chemicals as a class pose little threat to human health[2]”

Board of Directors

Includes executives from Exxon Philip Morris and General Motors

Senior Fellows

  • Wendell Cox - (sprawl and urban transit) – Has spent three years as the Director of Public Policy of the American Legislative Exchange Council – See ALEC.
  • Jim Johnston - (energy and regulation) – ex- Senior Economist at Amoco
  • Jay Lehr - (science and environment) Dr. Lehr is the author of more than 400 magazine and journal articles and 12 books. He is editor of Rational Readings on Environmental Concerns, “one of the most comprehensive counter-science books ever compiled”. It denigrates environmentalists as “extremists” “apocalyptics” “alarmists” “zealots”, “chemophobes”, “fundamentally elitist”, “professional scaremongers” and “potential mass murderers”. In the book it says that acid rain is advantageous, pollution is no problem, dioxin does not cause problems global warming is good for you, nuclear power is safe and even radiation is good for you with the quote “exposure to the fallout from Chenobyl will actually prove to be a net health benefit[5]”
  • Merrill Matthews Jr., Ph.D -. (health care) - He is a visiting scholar with the Institute for Policy Innovation and policy director of the American Conservative Network, a project of the American Conservative Union, Health policy advisor to the American Legislative Exchange Council
  • Conrad Meier - (health care) Undertaken studies the American Legislative Exchange Council
  • Thomas Roeser - (politics)

Issues

Education, Environment, Health Care and Smoker's Lounge –“The evidence on second-hand smoke has been repeatedly shown to be too weak to survive scientific and legal scrutiny. It’s junk science,” says Heartland.[6]

Climate

Heartland is the co-ordinator of the websites http://www.climatesearch.com and climatesearch.org. The websites, started in 1999, are aimed “at bringing together into a single, easily searched site the climate change research and commentary being produced by scores of public policy research groups and science organizations doing careful, credible work on this subject”[7]. Under the section “partners”, the websites list the “individuals and organizations identified below have contributed publications to this database and are actively promoting Climate Search.org on their own Web sites”. The partners include[8]:

Heartland is also a member of the Cooler Heads Coalition, which is a partner in climatesearch.com. Through the Greening Earth Society, it also has a joint publishing venture with Western Fuels[9].

It has long argued against Kyoto Protocols, scaremongering about the risks of Kyoto implementation and downplaying the risks of climate change. In 1996 it published a newspaper called “ Earth Day ‘96: A Free Guide to Saving the Planet,” which debunked issues such as climate change, ozone depletion, second hand tobacco smoke and dioxins. Authors in the booklet included Edward Porter and Sally Brain Gentille from the American Petroleum Institute; Dr. Sallie Baliunas from the George C. Marshall Institute (see below); and Dr. S. Fred Singer from SEPP (see below).[10]

In March 1999, Heartland argued that US compliance with Kyoto would increase US farm production costs by up to 20 billion dollars a year and cut farm income by nearly a half[11]. In September that year, Joseph Bast, the Institute’s president said: “I classify global warming as a nonproblem”[12].

The following year, Heartland and the CEI filed a lawsuit against the then President Clinton, alleging he illegally expanded the scope of, and spending on, a report by the U.S. Global Change Research Program on climate change for political reasons which would have assisted Vice President Gore's presidential campaign (see CEI).[13] It also claimed that that compliance with Kyoto would mean consumers paying more than 55 percent more for electricity and 70 percent more for heating oil by 2010, with 2.4 million jobs being destroyed[14].

In 2003 it continued its scaremongering by claiming that if states in the US were to reduce carbon dioxide levels to 7 percent below their 1990 levels it “would carve a 28.6 percent hole in the average state's budget, making today's fiscal problems look small by comparison”.[15]

In contrast, the study found that if left unaddressed, by 2060 global warming would have a small positive effect on the U.S. economy (mostly by lowering food costs, heating bills, and construction costs), and a small negative effect on the global community.[16]

References