Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Smells Like Mean Spirit(ed)

Story from Common Dreams - Exxon Exxposed

If Exxon-Mobile does not represent everything that is wrong with corporate America I don't know what does. The Wall Street Journal story, picked up by Common Dreams, reports that the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has audited Greenpeace on the basis of a tip from Public Interest Watch, a group that received 97% of its funding from Exxon Mobile.

Now Exxon has for years engaged in a public mis-information campaign on Global Warming and in support of the Iraq war (which incidently drove world oil prices into the $60-$70/bbl range for the first time). A partial list of Exxon's donations in 2002 include:

  • Acton Institute for the Study or Religion and Liberty ($30,000) (Anti-Kyoto, Pro-SUV, Anti-Environmentalism)
  • American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research ($200,000) (Anti-Kyoto/Global Warming deniers, pro-Iraq war, pro-gun, closely linked to and rents space to PNAC, board members include Lynne Cheney, Richard Perle, Robert Borke, Richard Cohen, Newt Gingrich and Exxon CEO Lee Raymond)
  • Atlas Economic Research Foundation ($50,000) (An association founded to seed right wing think tanks across the world. Linked to Fraser Institue, Manhatten Institute, Pacific Research Institute etc.)
  • Cato Institute ($30,000)(generally libertarian, advocats of privatization of social security, vocal deniers of global warming science)
  • Center for Strategic and International Studies ($145,000)(generally non-partisan, includes Democrats and Republicans amoung its membership: Madeleine K. Albright, Harold Brown, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Warren Christopher etc.)
  • Committee for Economic Development ($75,000)(no information)
  • Competitive Enterprise Institute ($405,000)(Strongly Anti-environmental, Anti-Kyoto, Global Warming Deniers)
  • Foundation for American Communications ($175,000)(no information)
  • Frontiers of Freedom ($233,000)(pro-big tobbacco, pro-big oil, RJ Reynolds, Phillip Morris and Exxon are Founding members, Anti-environment, anti-kyoto, global warming deniers)
  • George C. Marshall Foundation (90,000)(one of the chief disseminators of anti-global warming misinformation and pseudo science.
  • Reason Foundation ($50,000) Libertarian, strongly anti-environmental
Source: Wikipedia

But now it appears that Exxon's war on environmentalism and climate change science has taken a new offensive. Attack the oppositions organization by sicking the IRS on them. Greenpeace by the way was cleared in the IRS investigation. According to a 60 Minutes story, Exxon was also the lobbying influence behind the White House and NASA's attempts to silence NASA Climate Changes scientist James Hansen. I guess if you can't win on the message, attack the messengers

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