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February 02, 2007

Recommended reading

American Enterprise Institute offers scientists and economists $10,000 each to criticize a report from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). [HuffPo; HT: CPL and HML]

A 29-year-old sex offender posed as a 12-year-old student to attend a charter school in Pheonix, Arizona. [BBC]

A New Orleans coroner finds no evidence against the health care providers accused of mercy killing during Katrina. [NYT]

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Re: the AEI: Aren't conservatives the ones who say that when you have a problem, it doesn't work just to throw money at it?

Correct Bruce, unless it is the conservative with the problem then denial works best.

This is off topic, but Lindsay, any thoughts on the Mooninite invasion in Boston? Since it stemmed from an act of corporate vandalism (or something close to it) I thought it would be up your alley.

I'm shocked that no one in Boston watches the Swim.

It was advertising, people. Jeez, we're supposed to be intelligent, not Chicken Littles.

The ability to take a cartoon character and somehow spin that into accusing someone of corporate vandalism would make even Karl Rove proud.

I hate so-called guerilla marketing. It's tacky, intrusive, and obnoxious. Sometimes it's actually destructive or unsafe. It's often an exploitative industry, too: companies will send casual laborers to break the law and disown them if they get busted.

On the other hand, those Mooninite boxes didn't look like bombs to me. The boxes were distributed in several other cities and nobody freaked out. If Boston Mayor Tom Menino wanted to cite these guys for littering, I wouldn't object too strenuously. I say fine the guerilla marketing firm and the company that hired them a few thosand bucks each, give the perps some tickets, and move on.

This wasn't a hoax, as a lot of media reports indicated. It was a publicity stunt that was wildly misinterpreted.

There's a reason why companies aren't just allowed to leave their promotional items they want. Actually, there are plenty of good reasons--one of which is that if you leave weird objects lying around, people may interpret them the wrong way, and if the authorities don't know what's up, disturbances may ensue.

Those silly Mooninite boxes were harmless, but they shouldn't have been left lying around in the first place. If you want an example of truly negligent marketing tactics, consider those "Mission Impossible" props that were designed to make newspaper boxes look like they'd been wired to explode.

The AEI receives major funding from Exxon-Mobile; that fact should be disclosed every time one of their "resident scholars" or "senior fellows", or whatever title they may give to a paid hack, has an article published. Talk about having an "agenda".

The report gave a definition for ppm and ppb (which I didn't need) but not GtC (which I took as gigaton carbon), other than defining it in terms of GtC02. Where is my $10,000?

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