Chutzpah (sponsored by Koch Industries)

Chutzpah (sponsored by Koch Industries)

Blog ››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

The Daily Caller's Ryan Young writes of concerns about the possibility that cell phone radiation could be harmful to humans: "Some people just like to be scared. And other people can get massive amounts of funding by catering to those people."

Young's warning about people catering to their funders is rather amusing given that the Daily Caller identifies Young as "the Warren T. Brookes Journalism Fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C." See, the Competitive Enterprise Institute exists for the purpose of peddling "research" and "journalism" that advances the interests of its corporate funders like Exxon Mobil and Koch Industries, along with right-wing ideologues like Richard Mellon Scaife. Exxon is a household name, of course, but you may not know anything about Koch. Here's a reminder:

That's Charles Koch as in Koch Industries, which was once required to pay "the largest civil fine ever imposed on a company under any federal environmental law to resolve claims related to more than 300 oil spills from its pipelines and oil facilities in six states." Or perhaps you know Koch Industries better as the company that got rich in part by stealing oil from Indian reservations and federal lands -- that is, from U.S. taxpayers. Then they used the money they stole from taxpayers -- that is, from you -- to fund right-wing think-tanks that advocate policies that would help people like Charles Koch at the expense of, well, you. (Koch Industries agreed to pay $25 million in penalties for stealing all that oil.)

As you can imagine, companies like Exxon and Koch don't much like, among other things, government regulations. (Government regulations, after all, result in Koch having to pay civil fines when it spills oil all over six states.) And, not coincidentally, CEI churns out anti-regulation propaganda with startling frequency. In fact, here's a Daily Caller column written by CEI journalism fellow Ryan Young: "Regulations, regulations everywhere." Naturally, it attacks the EPA, FDA, USDA, OSHA, etc.

I'm sure CEI journalism fellow Ryan Young's criticism of the EPA, which once imposed a record-setting fine on CEI funder Koch industries, doesn't have anything to do with "get[ting] massive amounts of funding by catering" to companies like Koch. Nope, probably just a coincidence. And targeting the FDA probably doesn't have anything to do with the money Pfizer and PHRMA have given CEI, either. But given those "coincidences," Young might want to think twice about accusing other people of catering to funders.

UPDATE: Young seems annoyed that I pointed out that there's often a certain synergy between CEI's work and its funders, which he says is irrelevant. Curiously, he forgets to mention that I did so because he brought the topic up in the first place by accusing (unspecified) other people of catering to (unspecified) funders. I made that clear in the very first line of my post. Maybe he didn't read that one? I referred to that fact in the very last line of my post, too, but maybe he didn't read that one, either.

Ryan Young
The Daily Caller
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