Thursday, February 22, 2007

Millstone award for March: the Exxon Mobil corporation, the American Enterprise Institute, and Lee Raymond

The only hard part about this decision was stopping myself from moving the March award to very early in February, when the articles were posted. However, March's Millstone Award goes to Exxon Mobil, the American Enterprise Institute, and Lee Raymond. Raymond is the ex-CEO of Exxon Mobil, who got a $400 million handshake. He is also the vice-chair of the board of trustees of the AEI, which has received $1.6 million from Exxon Mobil.

I've previously posted articles indicating that there are signs of hope at Exxon Mobil. The company had previously funded some quack science groups that questioned the premise of global warming. They stopped funding some of these groups.

I also posted an article about a damning report on global warming released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. They state that there is a 90% chance that global warming is caused by human activity.

The AEI is a conservative, pro-business think tank. I myself am pro-business. However, I also support human rights and environmental protection. These idiots do not. And it has come to light that the AEI tried to bribe IPCC scientists so that they would question the methods used in the climate change report. Ian Sample, the Guardian's science reporter, has this to say:

"Scientists and economists have been offered $10,000 each by a lobby group funded by one of the world's largest oil companies to undermine a major climate change report due to be published today.
Letters sent by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), an ExxonMobil-funded thinktank with close links to the Bush administration, offered the payments for articles that emphasise the shortcomings of a report from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)."

"The UN report was written by international experts and is widely regarded as the most comprehensive review yet of climate change science. It will underpin international negotiations on new emissions targets to succeed the Kyoto agreement, the first phase of which expires in 2012."

"The letters, sent to scientists in Britain, the US and elsewhere, attack the UN's panel as "resistant to reasonable criticism and dissent and prone to summary conclusions that are poorly supported by the analytical work" and ask for essays that "thoughtfully explore the limitations of climate model outputs".

Climate scientists described the move yesterday as an attempt to cast doubt over the "overwhelming scientific evidence" on global warming. "It's a desperate attempt by an organisation who wants to distort science for their own political aims," said David Viner of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia."

"The letters were sent by Kenneth Green, a visiting scholar at AEI, who confirmed that the organisation had approached scientists, economists and policy analysts to write articles for an independent review that would highlight the strengths and weaknesses of the IPCC report."

Steve Hargreaves, a CNN Money staff writer, interviewed an Exxon Mobil spokesman, who had the gall to say that the company continues to donate to the AEI, but does not control what the group does, and that in fact, many corporations give to the AEI.

Well, I tell you what. I will call fire and judgment on ALL corporations or corporate-linked foundations who have given money to the AEI. But our friends at Exxon Mobil get the first blast.

According to Right Web, the following corporations/foundations are donors to these people as of late 06:
"According to People for the American Way, corporate donors to AEI have included the General Electric Foundation, Amoco, Kraft, Ford Motor Company Fund, General Motors Foundation, Eastman Kodak Foundation, Metropolitan Life Foundation, Procter & Gamble Fund, Shell Companies Foundation, Chrysler Corporation, Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, General Mills Foundation, Pillsbury Company Foundation, Prudential Foundation, American Express Foundation, AT&T Foundation, Corning Glass Works Foundation, Morgan Guarantee Trust, Alcoa Foundation, and PPG Industries. Wal-Mart is also a major contributor to AEI."

Finally, the AEI is also reputed to be very close to the Bush administration. Whereas the Iraq Study Group that Bush convened, and then ignored, tried to push in the direction of a diplomatic solution, the AEI's armchair generals pushed to send more troops. Bush is listening to them, although Congress may deny him.

Let's pray that they do, and let's pray that Exxon Mobil and the AEI come to face justice.


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