Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Exxtra Thick Hypocrisy

So the Sierra Club, Wisconsin's most prominent environmental group, forms a group to attack Exxon for their perceived anti-environmental record. They call the group "Exxpose Exxon," and arm themselves with this press release. From the release:

“For years, ExxonMobil has intentionally put its own profits above a clean environment and the health of America’s families. As a result, we are asking all Americans not to accept a new job at ExxonMobil, invest in the company, or to buy ExxonMobil’s gas and products,” stated the ExxposeExxon coalition in a letter sent today to ExxonMobil CEO Lee Raymond.

Pretty much par for the course. But there's a twist.

According to state lawmakers' ethics reports, in which they disclose their financial interests, four legislators have substantial stock holdings in Exxon. They are Republican Rep. Rob Kreibich, Democratic Rep. Terese Berceau, Democratic Senator Robert Wirch, and Democratic patriarch Senator Fred Risser. Listing Exxon on your report means you have to have between $5,000 and $50,000 in Exxon stock. Risser deserves special notice for his holding over $50,000 in Exxon. Many legislators hold mutual funds that invest heavily in Exxon and likely don't even realize it.

Of course, on September 1st of 2004, the Sierra Club actually gave Risser and Berceau awards for their leadership on the environment in a Capitol ceremony. From a Capital Times article:

"In accepting his award today, Risser said a good environment is essential for good jobs. 'Those people who make a distinction are wrong,' he said."

"Berceau said voting 100 percent for the environment was not difficult. 'It was the right thing to do,' she said, focusing on the link between a clean environment and health. 'We have more kids with asthma and more cancer, but we focus on curing instead of preventing.'"

Um... right thing to do, unless you personally profit from companies that pollute.

For a complete list of voting report cards for state legislators given by the Sierra Club, go here. You know the drill - what the Sierra Club deems important makes Democrats look good, and makes Republicans look like they actually sneak out at night personally to pour cyanide in rivers and lakes.

I will hold my breath waiting for a press release from the Sierra Club condemning Risser, Berceau, and Wirch for personally profiteering off an oil company that they call "deceptive" and "irresponsible," and say "intentionally put its own profits above a clean environment and the health of America’s families."

Still holding...

Turning blue...

Someone might want to call 911...