NEWS ROUNDUP….From the Guardian:
Revealed: How Oil Giant Influenced Bush
President’s George Bush’s decision not to sign the United States up to the Kyoto global warming treaty was partly a result of pressure from ExxonMobil, the world’s most powerful oil company, and other industries, according to US State Department papers seen by the Guardian.
Bush Aide Softened Greenhouse Gas Links to Global Warming
A White House official who once led the oil industry’s fight against limits on greenhouse gases has repeatedly edited government climate reports in ways that play down links between such emissions and global warming, according to internal documents….Before going to the White House in 2001, [Philip Cooney] was the “climate team leader” and a lobbyist at the American Petroleum Institute, the largest trade group representing the interests of the oil industry.
U.S. Eases Demands on Tobacco Companies
Justice Department lawyers Tuesday asked a federal judge for sweeping sanctions against the biggest tobacco companies, saying the government had proved a 50-year industry conspiracy to mislead the public with “half truths, deceptions and lies that continue to this day.”
But without explanation, government attorneys drastically reduced their most expensive demand, scaling back a proposed industry-funded smoking-cessation program from $130 billion to $10 billion.
….A person familiar with the situation, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the change was “forced on the tobacco team by higher-level, politically appointed officials of the Justice Department,” including Associate Atty. Gen. Robert McCallum, who oversees the civil division….Before his appointment in the Justice Department in 2001, McCallum had been a partner at Alston & Bird, an Atlanta-based firm that has done trademark and patent work for R.J. Reynolds Tobacco.
Can you spot the trend here?