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Just ‘jousting’

The dust appears to be settling after Inside the Beltway published a rather threatening letter sent by Michael T. Eckhart, president of the American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE), to Marlo Lewis, senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI).

“Take this warning from me, Marlo. It is my intention to destroy your career as a liar,” Mr. Eckhart had written in response to an article Mr. Lewis wrote for American Spectator about the potential economic consequences of “global warming” bills introduced in the Congress.

“If you produce one more editorial against climate change, I will launch a campaign against your professional integrity. I will call you a liar and charlatan to the Harvard community, of which you and I are members. I will call you out as a man who has been bought by Corporate America. Go ahead, guy. Take me on.”

Now, the ACORE president has sent Inside the Beltway an extremely lengthy response, and apology to everybody offended by his words to Mr. Lewis, which he intended as a “private communication,” and merely “in the context of personal combat and jousting.”

“I apologize to all in the public who were offended … because it was not intended for public display,” Mr. Eckhart writes. “In my opinion, CEI, and especially Dr. Lewis, has been presenting a false prosecution — a knowingly false prosecution — of the global-warming issue, to the detriment of society and the billions of people who will be affected by climate change.”

As for reader reaction, G. Merkle writes: “An amusing but chilling note. I’m not surprised — global warming is a religion, a belief system. Rather than a debate on fact, heretics must be destroyed.”

Another reader, Douglas Schulek-Miller, wrote directly to Mr. Eckhart, sending us a copy:

“Sir, having read the content of your letter to Marlo Lewis, I must thank you for your energetic reminder of why I chose Canada when I moved my family back to North America after 14 years in Europe …

“I recall vaguely from my youth how the spirit of [nuclear physicist] Enrico Fermi was besmirched over the results of his work during World War II. Hopefully when all this has wrung all the possible monies out of it, the public will not have the same view of the poor environmentalists who stood at the forefront of this pop-fascism that parades itself as science.

“Sincerely and with best wishes, Douglas Schulek-Miller (A.A., B.A., M.B.A., Ph.D., but who’s counting?)”

John McCaslin can be reached at 202/636-3284 or