Wall Street Journal Opinion: The Climate Change 1%
Remember the university professor who wanted the government to use the RICO law created to prosecute mobsters as a tool against global-warming dissenters? Well, taxpayers may be the ones calling for an investigation after examining the nonprofit venture that George Mason University Professor Jagadish Shukla has been running with generous government funding.
On Tuesday evening House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith wrote to the inspector general at the National Science Foundation. Chairman Smith reported that Mr. Shukla has recently been audited by the university in connection with his outside position running the Institute of Global Environment and Society (IGES).
According to Chairman Smith’s letter, the audit “appears to reveal that Dr. Shukla engaged in what is referred to as ‘double dipping.’ In other words, he received his full salary at GMU, while working full time at IGES and receiving a full salary there.”
Mr. Smith cites a memo from the school’s internal auditor in claiming that Mr. Shukla appeared to violate the university’s policy on outside employment and paid consulting. The professor received $511,410 in combined compensation from the school and IGES in 2014, according to Mr. Smith, “without ever receiving the appropriate permission from GMU officials.”
We reached Mr. Shukla by phone and asked if George Mason had audited him. He replied, “I don’t know. I don’t want to talk to you. I’m in a meeting.” Then he hung up. A spokesman for the school confirmed there was an audit and said that Mr. Shukla’s outside work didn’t interfere with his faculty job but declined to say whether Mr. Shukla had violated university rules.
Last year Mr. Shukla wasn’t shy about urging federal officials to investigate those who don’t share his beliefs. He should now open up about the finances of his organization, which according to the House Science Committee has consumed more than $25 million in taxpayer grants.