Not a Joke: Disgraced Thief Peter Gleick Poses for ‘Lifetime Achievement’ Award

by Jim Lakely on March 26, 2013

As of yet, disgraced scientist Peter Gleick has not appeared in public to receive the award the enviro-left would like to give him for his willingness to commit crimes in the service of destroying all who present real science.

Honestly, I find it amazing that some wacko leftist outfit hasn’t already re-jiggered a bowling trophy with Gleick’s name on it to laud him for ratting out apostates of the religion of climate alarmism. Pity. He’ll just have to settle for his creation of the Fakegate scandal as a legacy.

As for the “major award” for Gleick, word comes that the Silicon Valley Water Conservation Awards gave him and the Pacific Institute a “Lifetime Achievement” Water Conservation Award. By bestowing this “honor” on Gleick, the organization has sullied any good reputation it might have enjoyed. Peter Gleick’s actions are an affront to science, and a disgrace the Pacific Institute shares.

The Heartland Institute sent not just one letter to the board of directors of the Pacific Institute, but two. The letters asked the board to at least look into and respond the crimes to which Gleick admitted. To date, a little more than a year later, Heartland has received no response.

The first letter, sent on February 29, 2012, noted that the Pacific Institute had opened an investigation into what Gleick had done and asked for results. Heartland asked this:

The Heartland Institute’s staff, directors, donors, and other victims of Mr. Gleick’s crime look forward to reviewing the outcome of your investigation. Please confirm that you intend to make public the results of your investigation.

I hope that you and the firm you have hired will pay special attention to the documents I have enclosed:

  • The emails Gleick exchanged with Heartland prior to committing his crime, in which he was respectfully invited to debate Heartland Senior Fellow James M. Taylor on the issue of climate change at Heartland’s anniversary benefit event in August. In these emails, Gleick is informed of Heartland’s policies regarding the confidentiality of its donors and why we adopted that policy. Gleick declined the invitation to debate.
  • The emails Gleick used to steal documents intended to be read only by members of Heartland’s board of directors. Gleick falsely assumed the identity of a member of Heartland’s board on the same day (January 27) that he declined the invitation to debate climate change with Taylor.
  • The forged memo Gleick included with the stolen documents and falsely represented, in his message accompanying the documents to 15 allies and journalists, to have come from The Heartland Institute. I have highlighted the forger’s own words, as opposed to text that was copied and pasted from the stolen documents, and included my own analysis of this fraudulent document.
  • Gleick’s partial confession, in which he admits to having stolen the documents but claims that the memo, which he previously said came from The Heartland Institute, came “in the mail” from an anonymous source. He claims he stole documents because “a rational public debate is desperately needed,” a debate he had just declined to participate in. He offers his “personal apologies to all those affected,” presumably including people he knew his actions had put in harm’s way. He does not say or offer to do anything that would limit or undo the harm he caused.

I hope you will tell me, as you review these documents, if you recognize the author of the highlighted text of the forged memo, and if you believe Gleick received it from an anonymous source, and if you believe Gleick has shown any personal remorse for what he has done.

Finally, please pass along the following questions to the “independent” firm you hired to investigate Gleick:

  • Did Gleick use Pacific Institute computers to establish the Gmail email account under the name of a Heartland board member?
  • Did Gleick use Pacific Institute computers to establish the Gmail email account under the name of “heartlandinsider@gmail.com,” which he used to send the fake memo and the stolen documents to 15 media outlets?
  • Does the investigative firm intend to examine whether Gleick is the author of the fake memo?
  • Does the outside firm have access to all of the personal computers Gleick may have used to write and send the emails or to write the forged memo?
  • Is the fake memo or any trace of it on Gleick’s personal computer(s)?
  • Is the fake memo or any trace of it on the Pacific Institute’s computer system?
  • Is there evidence (as a blogger says) that the fake memo was scanned into a PDF document on a scanner at the Pacific Institute?
  • Does the Pacific Institute have possession of the hard copy of the fake memo or the envelope in which it was supposedly sent?
  • What steps does the Pacific Institute plan to take to preserve these and other documents relevant to the investigation?

As noted above, The Heartland Institute has yet to receive any answer. Nor has the Pacific Institute revealed anything about its “independent” investigation — as opposed to The Heartland Institute, which has been open about everything from the start.

Heartland sent a second letter to the Pacific Institute on April 30, 2012, after the results of many truly independent investigations of what Gleick admitted to doing — and to which he has not credibly explained or admitted. That second letter asked:

Since that letter was sent, several new pieces of evidence pointing to Gleick as the author of the fake memo have emerged:

■ A computer analysis conducted by Juola & Associates, the premier provider of expert analysis and testimony in the field of text and authorship, concluded “it is more likely than not that Gleick is in fact the author/compiler of the document entitled ‘Confidential Memo: 2012 Heartland Climate Strategy,’ and further that the document does not represent a genuine strategy memo from the Heartland Institute.”

■ Anthony Watts, host of WattsUpWithThat, widely considered the world’s most popular and influential Web site on climate science, commented: “It seems very likely then, given the result of this analysis, plus the circumstances, proximity, motive, and opportunity, that Dr. Peter Gleick forged the document known as ‘Confidential Memo: 2012 Heartland Climate Strategy.’ The preponderance of the evidence points squarely to Gleick.”

■ A thorough forensic analysis of Heartland’s computers (and those owned by Heartland’s president and his spouse) by Protek International concludes “the Memo was not created on Heartland’s computer systems and never existed there, or within Heartland’s email systems, prior to its posting online on February 14, 2012.”

All three documents are enclosed, along with a background document about Fakegate that we are circulating widely.

Gleick has been widely condemned for his serious breach of ethics. For example, New York Times columnist Andrew Revkin wrote, “One way or the other, Gleick’s use of deception in pursuit of his cause after years of calling out climate deception has destroyed his credibility and harmed others.” Revkin went on to write, “The broader tragedy is that his decision to go to such extremes in his fight with Heartland has greatly set back any prospects of the country having the ‘rational public debate’ that he wrote – correctly – is so desperately needed.”

On February 27, 2012, in response to Gleick’s confession, the Pacific Institute announced the Board of Directors had agreed to Gleick’s “request for a temporary leave of absence” and installed Elena Schmidt as “acting executive director.” The institute also announced it had “hired an independent firm to review the allegations” because it was “deeply concerned” about Gleick’s unethical and possibly criminal conduct that has done great harm to The Heartland Institute.

Since that date, however, no member of the Pacific Institute’s board has even attempted to distance the Pacific Institute from Gleick’s behavior, and there has been no announcements regarding the results of the “review.”

Even more alarming, there has been no indication that Gleick’s “leave of absence” has interrupted his work for the Pacific Institute. On March 8, just 10 days after the institute accepted his “leave of absence,” Gleick delivered the opening plenary remarks at the California Water Policy conference in Los Angeles before an audience of 300 people. The conference Web site and media reports identified Gleick with his “president” title intact.

On April 16, Gleick took part in the International Water Security Conference in Oxford, England. Gleick was, again, part of a high-profile plenary panel and listed in the program as “President and Co-founder, Pacific Institute.” A news report by Reuters of the conference quoted Gleick extensively and identified him as a “leading water expert and head of the U.S.-based Pacific Institute for Studies in Development, Environment and Security.”

On April 24, Gleick spoke at the Oxford Amnesty Lecture – apparently part of a scheduled tour. The organizers of the lecture also identify him with his Pacific Institute affiliation and refused to cancel his speech after The Heartland Institute informed them of his theft and fraud.

Since February, Gleick and the Pacific Institute have been silent about every aspect of this matter, save a brief statement from each party. The Heartland Institute has spent countless hours and scarce financial resources publicly fighting to restore its reputation in the press, with the public, and with donors. It is long past time for the Pacific Institute to answer for its role in Peter Gleick’s scandal.

In light of the above facts, please respond to the following specific questions for the Pacific Institute:

1. Does the Pacific Institute think a punitive “temporary leave of absence” of just 10 days is sufficient in light of its board of directors being “deeply concerned” about Gleick’s actions?

2. If Gleick’s “temporary leave of absence” was over after 10 days, why has the Pacific Institute not publicly announced that Gleick was reinstated to his post as president?

3. If Gleick is still on a “temporary leave of absence,” does the Pacific Institute endorse his speaking tour under the organization’s name?

4. It has been two months since the Pacific Institute said it had hired an independent firm to investigate Gleick’s theft and fraud. When can The Heartland Institute and the public expect to see the results and an announcement of action by the Pacific Institute?

5. Does the independent investigation include examination of computers and other office equipment owned by the Pacific Institute?

The Heartland Institute requests prompt answers for the sake of the Pacific Institute’s reputation, and for our organization to better understand the nature of Gleick’s harmful acts of theft, fraud, and deceit.

Since no member of the Pacific Institute’s board replied to my previous letter, you can understand why this letter is being posted online at fakegate.org and blind copied to all of the Pacific Institute’s major donors.

All of these questions are yet unanswered by the Pacific Institute and Gleick himself. Until they are, anything the Pacific Institute or Gleick does should be discounted as the work of thieves, cowards and frauds.

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