Sanders: I’d prosecute oil and gas executives over climate change

Vermont senator and presidential Bernie Sanders cites no criminal law that the executives violated, but he wouldn’t be the first champion of collectivism for whom the conviction was settled on first and the law found afterward. More: William Allison, Energy in Depth (in which I take issue with retroactive application of criminal law, and notions of “conspiracy” that do not make clear which underlying laws were involved).


  • It will be very hard to demonstrate an actual harm from climate change. Crops and forests are growing better. The IPCC could not document extinctions. More people die from cold than heat worldwide. Hurricanes remain flat in the long-term. To retroactively prosecute them for things that might happen 50 years from now is….special.

    • “More people die from cold than heat worldwide.”

      By an order of magnitude.

      In the IPCC AR4, there was a paper that was cited for excess heat deaths from global warming. If you actually looked at the paper, they actually looked at changes in both cold and heat related deaths under all the IPCC scenarios.

      Under the worst case scenario, the reduction in deaths from extreme cold and cold related weather events exceeded the increase in deaths from extreme heat and related weather events by an order of magnitude.

  • This would get interesting real fast. The oil and gas companies will undoubtedly make it about whether climate change is real or not. Both sides will use discovery to dig into the other’s records. It will get quite nasty as the pro-environment people meddle in the case via the media. Good luck Bernie, you’re going to create a monster. The only winner will be, as always, the lawyers.

  • Once again, politicians undercut the factual foundations of campaign finance laws. Why shouldn’t people, so threatened with criminal prosecution, be able to fight fire with fire? Why shouldn’t they have the right to use their money to defeat this candidate for president?

    It would be great indeed if our news media asked this question.

  • “Show me the man and I’ll show you the crime”
    “Beria targeted “the man” first, then proceeded to find or fabricate a crime. Beria’s modus operandi was to presume the man guilty, and fill in the blanks later. By contrast, under the United States Constitution, there’s a presumption of innocence that emanates from the 5th, 6th, and 14th Amendments, as set forth in Coffin vs. U.S. (1895).”

    I’m sure Mr. Sanders is only unintentionally wanting to follow in the process footsteps of Stalin’s mass murderer Beria.