The American Heartland Institute (big tobacco's lobbying arm) newest ad campaign.
[Some context from Andrew Sullivan]
In some ways, this is an almost perfect illustration of what has happened to the "right." A refusal to acknowledge scientific reality; and a brutalist style of public propaganda that focuses entirely on guilt by the most extreme association. Here's how the Heartland Institute describes this new campaign:
The billboard series features Ted Kaczynski, the infamous Unabomber; Charles Manson, a mass murderer; and Fidel Castro, a tyrant. Other global warming alarmists who may appear on future billboards include Osama bin Laden and James J. Lee (who took hostages inside the headquarters of the Discovery Channel in 2010). These rogues and villains were chosen because they made public statements about how man-made global warming is a crisis and how mankind must take immediate and drastic actions to stop it.
This is where the American right now is:
The people who still believe in man-made global warming are mostly on the radical fringe of society. This is why the most prominent advocates of global warming aren't scientists. They are murderers, tyrants, and madmen.
Mann and Ornstein are correct. Large sections of the American right are now close to insane as well as depraved. And there is no Buckley to rein them in. Just countless Jonah Goldbergs seeking to cash in.
This ad campaign would be hysterical if it wasn't so sad. Considering the millions of dollars the Heartland Institute has, this is the best they could do? Guilt by association? Are sophisticated matters of public policy now reduced to billboard ads with messages shorter than a Tweet? It's just another example of the debate being "dumbed down" by corporate lobbyists that have the money to do so. But in the spirit of Friday "lulz," using the same logic presented in the original ad, here are some mock-ups.
Some of the fine folks in the ONTD political community whipped these up: