Wei-Hock "Willie" Soon, a favorite scientist of climate-change deniers for his theory attributing global warming to variations in the sun's energy and not human activity, has accepted more than $1.2 million from the fossil-fuel industry in the last decade, the New York Times reports. He also failed to disclose that conflict of interest in most of his published papers.
Ten days ago, an ExxonMobil pipeline pumping crude oil from the Alberta tar sands down to Texas refineries burst open in Mayflower, Ark., causing the evacuation of nearly two dozen homes and coating wildlife and the surrounding area in thousands of gallons of oil. I'm sorry, sludge. But there's a silver lining! And no, I'm not talking about the reflective sheen of tar sands oil coating a five-mile radius, ha ha. No, folks, the silver lining is: Business is booming!
Tonight, Jon Stewart overviewed the media's reaction to a report that many poor households don't pay federal income tax before comparing it to the non-reaction over the fact that Exxon Mobil also doesn't pay. Inside, video of Stewart's magnificent juxtaposition.
♦ AIG is already running out of the $123 billion in cash it was provided by the Federal Reserve, which means the authorities are slowly waking up to idea that something else might be going on. [NYT]
♦ The U.S. economy shrank at a 0.3 percent annualized rate in the third quarter as consumer spending declined at the fastest rate in 28 years. [MW]
♦ The Fed's half-point rate cut yesterday? It won't do much to prop up the economy. [NYP]
♦ Andrew Cuomo has asked banks to provide his office with bonus data. [NYT]
♦ Some hedge funds are still raking in cash from investors. Steve Cohen's SAC is down 5.5 percent in 2008 (and he's moved most of his funds into cash), but he's accepting new funds beginning in January. [Bloomberg]