With British Petroleum spewing more than 200,000 gallons of oil a day into the Gulf of Mexico in what could be an ecological cataclysm, it is useful to look at the hypocrisy of the energy companies when it comes to an even worse crisis threatening life itself on the planet–rapid climate change due to increasing carbon in the atmosphere.
For years, the oil industry, and especially its largest company, Exxon Mobil, has been funding foundations and scientists that seek to refute the mounting evidence of global warming. A recent Greenpeace study, released in March, found that Exxon Mobil was second only to Koch Industries in offering financial backing for these climate change deniers. Between 2005 and 2008, Koch Industries, a privately held oil firm based in Texas, gave $24.9 million to anti-global warming scientists and foundations. Exxon Mobil, over the same period, gave $8.9 million.
Shrinking polar cap opens new oil drilling opportunities
Heavily criticized for its climate denial propaganda and lobbying, Exxon Mobil claimed in 2006 that it would no longer fund such activities. It has continued to do so, however, though a stealth campaign of funding foundations like the Atlas Economic Research Foundation and International Policy Network in the UK and the Cato and Heritage Foundations in the US, all of which themselves give money to the climate change deniers.
Other oil companies, like Shell, Chevron and others, do the same thing but at a lower level and with a lower profile than Exxon Mobil.
But here’s where the hypocrisy and lying become chutzpah.
Award-winning investigative reporter Dave Lindorff has been raking the journalistic muck now for 38 years, since he started out reporting the goings-on of three small towns at the mouth of the Connecticut River for the Middletown Press in 1972. A regular columnist for Counterpunch.org, he has also written for such diverse and seemingly mutually exclusive …
Continue reading “Dave Lindorff kicks off the new ThisCantBeHappening news collective website”
One thing you don’t hear much mention of in all the coverage of the BP oil rig blowout that is now pouring 210,000 gallons of oil a day into the Gulf of Mexico, just a few dozen miles off the coast of Louisiana, is the 2010 hurricane season, which officially starts on June 1, but which can start significantly earlier.
This is, after all, an El Nino year, so storms could be more frequent and stronger than usual. In 2007, recall, the first storm of the season was Tropical Storm Andrea, which reached a size strong enough to merit a name on May 7, just a week later than today.
The former Los Angeles police chief, Daryl Gates, who died late last month of cancer at his home in California, is being widely credited in mostly laudatory newspaper obituaries as the man who developed the idea of Special Weapons And Tactics (SWAT)units–those paramilitary police teams so loved by Hollywood filmmakers–who bring the art and weaponry of modern warfare into communities, breaking into houses with faces covered in ski masks, and carrying assault weapons in order to make arrests for often minor offenses, or blowing away people–often innocent people–in what the modern military c