Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Listen To Your Mother 

Chris Mooney over at Mother Jones (who says there aren’t still real journalists?) has dug up an impressive list of “scientists” and “think tanks” (I use quotation marks to emphasize the level of doubt) that are on ExxonMobil’s pay, hired, basically, to deny that global warming exists. It begins with an even attended by Michael Crichton, whose book, State of Fear, had just been released. Suffice it to say that Crichton has gone around the bend. After he did his spiel at the meeting, this is what happened:

During the question-and-answer period following his speech, Crichton drew an analogy between believers in global warming and Nazi eugenicists. “Auschwitz exists because of politicized science,” Crichton asserted, to gasps from some in the crowd. There was no acknowledgment that the AEI event was part of an attempt to do just that: politicize science. The audience at hand was certainly full of partisans.

The AEI of course, has its own history, but Mooney goes on to note that

Mother Jones has tallied some 40 ExxonMobil-funded organizations that either have sought to undermine mainstream scientific findings on global climate change or have maintained affiliations with a small group of “skeptic” scientists who continue to do so. Beyond think tanks, the count also includes quasi-journalistic outlets like Tech CentralStation.com (a website providing “news, analysis, research, and commentary” that received $95,000 from ExxonMobil in 2003), a FoxNews.com columnist, and even religious and civil rights groups. In total, these organizations received more than $8 million between 2000 and 2003 (the last year for which records are available; all figures below are for that range unless otherwise noted). ExxonMobil chairman and CEO Lee Raymond serves as vice chairman of the board of trustees for the AEI, which received $960,000 in funding from ExxonMobil. The AEI-Brookings Institution Joint Center for Regulatory Studies, which officially hosted Crichton, received another $55,000. When asked about the event, the center’s executive director, Robert Hahn—who’s a fellow with the AEI—defended it, saying, “Climate science is a field in which reasonable experts can disagree.”

It’s a good read. Check it out: Some Like It Hot and see who’s getting dirty money to do bad science in the cause of greedy oil and their bought and paid for pols. See who's getting the dough at Forty public policy groups that lists who's grabbing this oily cash.

This in a world that will force people who go bankrupt to forego groceries in order to fatten credit card companies.

Fear and greed. Peace and justice. We must choose, brothers and sisters. And, hey, a subscription to Mother Jones makes a nice gift for a loved one.

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