Earlier this month, my colleague Dennis reported on the inspired advocacy of the Heartland Institute, which suggested to drivers that if they believed in climate change, they might also be serial killers.
It was such an intelligent campaign, well-becoming of a serious public policy organization. After all, the "Hitler liked dogs and was a vegetarian" argument has undermined pet ownership in the United States and eliminated the produce section of the supermarket. Yet somehow the plan that couldn't fail failed…
Along with the damage to its reputation, Heartland's financial future is also threatened by an exodus of corporate donors as well as key members of staff.
In a fiery blogpost on the Heartland website, the organisation's president Joseph Bast admitted Heartland's defectors were "abandoning us in this moment of need".
Over the last few weeks, Heartland has lost at least $825,000 in expected funds for 2012, or more than 35% of the funds its planned to raise from corporate donors, according to the campaign group Forecast the Facts, which is pushing companies to boycott the organisation.
Its entire Washington DC office, barring one staffer, decamped, taking Heartland's biggest project, involving the insurance industry, with them.
I think Heartland should take this opportunity to rebrand itself as a pro-science institution. For one thing, they're making it much easier to study the polar ice caps. Thanks in part to Heartland's advocacy, they keep getting smaller and more manageable.
Tags: Climate Change, Conservatives, Science & Technology