Guest Post by Isaac Simpson

In Tennessee, state GOP legislators are passing a bill to ban chemtrails. SB 2691/HB2063 is being called a “conspiracy theory bill” by “local media” (The Tennessean is owned by Gannett). It’s not about chemtrails but about real-life plans considered by the Biden administration to spray metal into the air to block climate change. Literally, “scorch the sun,” Matrix-style, using something called Solar Radiation Modification (SRM).

SRM is the emission of reflective aerosols into the upper atmosphere to reflect sunlight and cool the planet. It sounds bad, which is why the Tennessee state senate passed the bill to ban all geoengineering and weather modification—it outlaws “conducting geoengineering experiments by intentionally dispersing chemicals into the atmosphere.”

In reality, almost no SRM experiments have been conducted, and we have little experimental data on what its effects would be. But what we do know about SRM is that its effects would be global, and the aerosols would remain suspended in the atmosphere for years.

Much of the power (or lack thereof, depending on how you see it) of the contemporary right comes from instinctual understandings of elite corruption that don’t always exactly match reality. There’s a feeling that the people we’re up against are pure evil and that they really would scorch the sky, and that feeling can be a uniting and powerful force. Hence the power of what the left constantly dubs as “conspiracy theories,” some of which turn out to be true (Epstein) and some of which are more feeling than fact (Qanon).

The reason why the right can coalesce the political will to get such a bill passed in Tennessee is because of this very power: conspiracies, instinctual thinking, whatever you want to call it. So it’s not necessarily a bad thing that these initiatives don’t always map to reality. In this instance, however, we see how such thinking can actually harm the right. The more productive, impactful parts of the right at that.

Language in the bill paints an unintentionally broad stroke. It doesn’t distinguish between cloud seeding, stratospheric aerosol injection, or much at all about any other geoengineering or weather modification tech. In other words, it pretty much bans anyone engineering anything in the sky that could be considered a geoengineering experiment.

Not all such experiments are sinister or related to climate change. Some help farmers. Cloud seeding, for example, is the dispersion of silver iodide into clouds to augment precipitation. Silver iodide’s crystal structure is similar to that of ice, so water in clouds easily binds to it, forming large enough crystals to fall as snow or melt into rain. Its effects last 15 to 90 minutes, and it can target individual farms and watersheds. The amount of silver iodide sprayed in the air to initiate this process, which was invented in 1946, can fit in the palm of your hand—there is zero risk to human beings.

States like Idaho, Texas, and Wyoming pay for programs to increase water availability in their states for farms and utilities. China also spends hundreds of millions of dollars annually on cloud seeding and employs 38,000 people in the Beijing Weather Modification Office.

However, now the cloud seeding, along with other potential developments in air-centric water control that could benefit farmers, are at risk of being made illegal not just in Tennessee but in Kentucky as well, where the state legislature is considering a similar ban. If it becomes a Red State phenomenon, farmers in all of those states could be at a major disadvantage.

Why do we know this? Because cloud seeding is one of the exciting technologies coming out of the El Segundo tech scene—a sort of right-coded answer to Silicon Valley that has become a magnet for young, talented, patriotic men across the country. One such man is Augustus Doricko, founder of Rainmaker, a cloud seeding firm, who yesterday testified in front of the Tennessee legislature.

In his testimony to Tennessee’s House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee and the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Monty Fritts, Doricko said, “In all things, I aspire to be a faithful Christian, and part of that means stewarding creation. Part of what I’m concerned about in Bill 2063 is that it would prevent Tennessee from stewarding creation with all the tools it has available.”

In a brief interview, Doricko said, “The current bill language, if passed, would deprive Americans of the option to use a technology that we invented while China uses it at scale. And it would totally disregard the mountain of scientific evidence on cloud seeding’s safety.”

Conspiratorial thinking can be a positive force to organize and establish political will. Trump is a great example—how many of the things they called him a conspiracy theory about turned out to be true? We’ve seen it effectively spark movements and initiatives and serve as the backbone of a genuine anti-establishment movement. However, it comes with its own costs. Sometimes, it can be overbroad. It can become a blunt, dumb instrument that hurts more than it helps. It needs to be tempered with a clear-eyed, practical view of the facts on the ground. Or in the air.

Isaac Simpson writes at and runs dissident propaganda agency WILL.