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"Know Thy Enemy: An Update on the Sierra Club" - Sierra Daily
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Sierra Daily

May 15, 2012

"Know Thy Enemy: An Update on the Sierra Club"

UntitledMemo to Bill Bissett, President, Kentucky Coal Association

Dear Bill: I've received a copy of your report, "Know Thy Enemy: An Update on the Sierra Club." Hot stuff! But listen, Bill — Next time you want a report on the Club's anti-coal activities, please — before you go back to Adam T. Goebel and Travis A. Crump of Stoll Keenon Ogden PLLC, the guys who produced this report — come to me. Whatever they're charging you, I'll do it for half.

"Half!" you say. "How can Rauber do it for half?" Here's my secret, Bill — I, too, know the secret Web source of their information. Between me and you, it's this: http://www.sierraclub.org/That's how your boys found out, for example, that

The "Beyond Coal" campaign is a push by the Sierra Club to [end] "the coal rush" as it calls it, and replace coal-fired electric generation plants with solar and wind.

Need more convincing of my research prowess? Just watch me source these scoops from your report:

  • "In January 2012, as a part of an initiative to end the use of coal-fired boilers on college campuses, the Sierra Club sponsored men's basketball games at both the University of Kentucky and Indiana University."
  • "In late March 2012, the Sierra Club introduced its first major national video campaign to promote its Beyond Coal initiative. . . . All five videos feature a fictitious coal executive, portrayed by John Ennis, a star of the show 'Mr. Show with Bob and David,' a 1990s comedy series, making fake commercials about the coal industry."
  • "The Sierra Club. . . is using water monitoring data, among other things as the basis for legal action against mining companies."
  • "The Sierra Club is attacking both coal supply and coal demand. With respect to coal supply, the Sierra Club has turned its resources on filing legal challenges against mining companies."

Bill, I hope that this will convince you to turn to me in the future as your bargain source for information about how the Sierra Club intends to move the nation beyond reliance on dirty, climate-changing coal. Meanwhile, see you in court!

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PAUL RAUBER is a senior editor at Sierra. He is the author, with Carl Pope, of the happily outdated Strategic Ignorance: Why the Bush Administration Is Recklessly Destroying a Century of Environmental Progress. Otherwise he is a cyclist, cook, and father of two. Follow him on Twitter @paulrauber.


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