Behind the Bastards

There’s a reason the History Channel has produced hundreds of documentaries about Hitler but only a few about Dwight D. Eisenhower. Bad guys (and gals) are eternally fascinating. Behind the Bastards dives in past the Cliffs Notes of the worst humans in history and exposes the bizarre realities of their lives. Listeners will learn about the young adult novels that helped Hitler form his monstrous ideology, the founder of Blackwater’s insane quest to build his own Air Force, the bizarre lives of the sons and daughters of dictators and Saddam Hussein’s side career as a trashy romance novelist.

How Exxon, Chevron and their buddies killed the world

How Exxon, Chevron and their buddies killed the world

Tue, 10 Mar 2020 10:00

How Exxon, Chevron and their buddies killed the world

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Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams, let's break or handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Wanna say I don't know less? Listen to stuff you should know more. Join host Josh and Chuck on the podcast packed with fascinating discussions about science, history, pop culture and more episodes. Dive into topics like was the lost, city of Atlantis Real? And how does pizza work? Say goodbye to I don't know. Because after listening to stuff you should know you will listen to stuff you should know on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her impactful behavioral discoveries on chimpanzees. It wasn't until one of the chimpanzees began to lose his fear of me, but I began to really make discoveries that actually shook the scientific world. Listen to amazing wildlife on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. But stop. Nope. ****. Well, I'm Robert Evans. This is another failed introduction. I don't, I don't know. I don't know why I keep. I keep trying new things. It's a bad idea to try new things. I should just go back to what works. But I am permanently. Trapped in a cycle of new attempts at success. That end only and failure anyway. My guest today, Molly Lambert, Night Call podcast host. How are you doing, Molly? Excellent. Molly. I like the new intro. Thank you. Just just the word. Butts. Yeah, that's it's better than Hitler. Yeah. This is a podcast where we talk about bad people. Molly, you know that because you've been a guest on here before. I'm ready. I'm ready to find out again who the worst people of all time are. I am not ready. I am strung out as **** because I got back from a red eye from DC yesterday and I feel miserable. But it's appropriate that I just got off of a plane, because planes are a major contributor to climate change, and today we're talking about the ******** who covered up climate change back when we could have done something about it more easily. Molly, how do you feel about ExxonMobil? Are you a fan? Are you a MOBA, Stan? Aren't we all a little little Exxon exes? Exes? Ooh, that's a good one. That was a band, right? And like the the early 2000s, it's definitely a band. Probably, yeah. I remember listening to them when I was a depressed teenager. Well, Molly, if you had to choose between, let's say, ExxonMobil, Chevron, what's another big one? Shell? Shell, yeah. Which would which which is which is going to be like your what? Who are you going to like root for? I mean, we're recording this on Valentine's Day. It's like, I feel like we're in a love quadrangle. We're. You can choose among so many great suitors, I think. Fine products, yeah. I don't. I don't really know enough about the difference between the oil companies. I just know they're all pretty bad. I do remember. I do remember. Was Exxon responsible for perhaps an oil spill? They sure were, yeah, the Exxon Valdez. Now, in their defense, how could you? Higher. Captain for a boat filled with volatile fluids and make sure he's sober at the same time, that's an impossible barrier. I mean, I do know that people go out on the oil wells for like months at a time. Yes, the documentary Armageddon informed me of that. Yeah. Is that the documentary about how people put animal crackers on each other's stomachs as well? Is that in Armageddon? Do I need to rewatch Armageddon? That's the one with Affleck, right? Yes and yeah, Tyler. Oh yeah, that's definitely the animal crackers romantic sequence. The that's I I just. I'm thinking back on it now, and I've realized that in my memory, the movie Armageddon has been condensed to the scene where Bruce Willis points a shotgun at Ben Affleck. The scene where they have that machine gun on an asteroid. For some reason they have to blow up an asteroid. They have to blow up an asteroid. But a machine? Anyway, I there's like 3 minutes from that movie The movies in the Criterion Collection. It should be as it should be. Yeah. So, all right, well, let's just, well, let's let's we should we should get into this thing that I wrote about these people that I hate, and then I hope you'll hate with me, because that's what the show is about, hating together. Yeah. In 2015, an internal Exxon report from the 1980s, which discussed the reality of climate change was leaked out to the public via the Guardian. In 2017, a Dutch news organization released a similar report from Shell. And I'm going to guess most of the people listening have heard at least a little bit about both of these disclosures. You've heard about this, right, Molly thought like, yeah, yeah. The stories generally summarized and outraged social media posts. Is this Exxon shell slash? Whoever knew about climate change for decades and hid their research? And this is more or less accurate. Like, it's close enough for Twitter, but you'll notice if you hop over to Google right now. Those of you who aren't actively pooping or it driving to work while you listen to podcasts, if you if you hop over to Google and you type in Exxon covered up climate change, the first two of the 6 million results you'll receive are articles from Exxon's own website with titles like ExxonMobil. Don't be misled, understanding the facts and understanding the hashtag. Exxon new controversy by ExxonMobil so. Obviously unbiased. I mean, who can we trust for unbiased reporting on ExxonMobil? But out there in the blogosphere, it's like how the very best people to report on whether or not police departments are responsibly using force are members of those police departments. Which is why we have such excellent statistics on police use of force, right? What could be better than an internal review? Yeah, I mean, at this job I am responsible for making sure I am sober enough to work, which is why I have been sober enough to work 100% of the days when I've done this podcast, even the one where I was actively tripping on acid. Which one was that? He refuses to say it's a secret. It's a secret to everybody, which is proof that the self monitoring thing is flawless. So. I agree. You won't even tell me his mom. I will not. I will not. It's it's a secret for only me. So today I'm going to tell everybody the story of how this sorry state of affairs came to be. It didn't start in the 1980s, which is when all those now leaked reports were written. It actually starts further back in 1959 when physicist Edward Teller warned the oil and gas industry about global warming in a keynote address at the energy and Man Symposium 1959. Is seen as the 100 year anniversary of the oil and gas industry. And so the event was a celebration of petroleum and its cousins. But Edward Teller did not take to the stage to celebrate. Instead he gave out a grave warning to the executives assembled. He said, quote ladies and gentlemen, I am here to talk to you about energy. In the future. I will start by telling you why I believe that the energy resources of the past must be supplemented. First of all, these energy resources will run short as we use more and more of the fossil fuels. But I would like to mention another reason why we probably have to look for additional fuel supplies. And this, strangely, is the question of contaminating the atmosphere. Whenever you burn conventional fuel, you create carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide is invisible. It is transparent. You can't smell it. It is not dangerous to health. So why should one worry about it? Carbon dioxide has a strange property it transmits visible light, but it absorbs the infrared radiation which is emitted from the earth. Its presence in the atmosphere causes a greenhouse effect. It has been calculated that a temperature rise corresponding to a 10% increase in carbon dioxide will be sufficient to melt the ice cap and submerge New York. All coastal cities would be covered, and since a considerable percentage of the human race lives in coastal regions, I think that this chemical contamination is more serious than most people tend to believe. So that's 1959. Worth, yeah. He's a, I mean, yeah, spot on. I mean, we might quibble with him saying that, you know, carbon dioxide is not dangerous to health, but I think he's saying specifically that, like, you're not going to get sick from carbon dioxide poisoning because of gasoline. You won't be able to tell what's happening until it's yeah, yeah, exactly. So they have this warning in 1959 and we do not know how tellers audience reacted in that moment because nobody was really taking notes, but we know that they did not heed his warning. Eight years later, Robert Dunlop, head of the American Petroleum Institute, took to the halls of Congress to argue that electric cars were not a practical investment. By the time they reached a point of utility, he said, science would allow for a mission free gasoline. Vehicles. You may notice that this has not happened, nor is it close to happening. Yeah. Yeah. So he wound up being wrong. Now, this might not have been a lie at the time. People believed stupid things about the future back then, like the Jetsons was on the air flying cars. Yeah, exactly. So maybe he just was really sure that we'd we'd hit that point. I think a lot of people are just sort of like, we'll figure it out later, you know, which is the problem with everything, but especially with environmental issues being the people. This will be the burden of the people of the future to figure out, not mine. Just do my job. Making all the money by drilling all the oil out. Yeah, it's it's weird. There's always this, like, this idea that, OK, we'll figure out the technology necessary to, like, solve our environmental problems before they become critical. But then when it comes time to actually, you know, use the resources capitalism has in order to devote manpower and brainpower towards, like, research, they all wind up making **** pills and hearing baldness as opposed to making emissions free. Definitely doesn't want to do anything that doesn't just make a lot of money and is easy there even. Yeah, yeah, yeah. There's a good documentary about Rachel Carson, who wrote silent spring. There sure is. Yeah. You seen that documentary? It's awesome. Because she was another person who was like, hey, DDT is like. Going to give people health problems. And it was like actively buried by the the DDT lobby, but also because everyone around her was like, it's a scientific innovation. We cannot stand in the way of progress. Each new thing we invent to exploit the environment is a miracle on the earth. So I don't know that we've gotten out of that mindset really, either. Judging by like, what Silicon Valley thinks are the cool new things to invent, we never will get out of that mindset because. We're very dumb. Or maybe we will. And I'm just a pessimist because I spent all these hours researching ExxonMobil and Shell and Chevron and tell me more. So, yeah, Dunlop, like, gets up in front of ******* Congress and he's like, electric cars are stupid. We're gonna have a missions free gasoline. That's what we ought to be working on. And, you know, the very next year after he does this, he receives a report that the American Petroleum Institute had commissioned from Stanford. And this report warned that carbon dioxide emissions would lead directly to global warming. And quote serious worldwide environmental changes. So. 1959 Teller gets up on, warns people about this. 1967 Robert Dunlop takes to Congress and says that, you know, none of this is going to be a big issue. And then the very next year his own organization gets a report saying like, we need to immediately start reducing carbon dioxide emissions or horrible things are going to happen now. Dunlop died in 1995. He had a son, Richard G Dunlop, and a daughter, Barbara, neither of which have been able to find much out about 1 presumes they're quite well. Off. But since their dad shares the name of a member of an Irish motorcycle dynasty who died tragically, the Google results for them are kind of a mess, and we've got a lot more ground to cover here. So while Dunlop deserves much blame for ignoring the early signs of climate change, it must be noted that there were warnings the broader American populace could have accessed and heated if they had wanted to do so. In 1965, philosopher Murray Bookchin published crisis in our cities, a book about the negative consequences of urbanization. In it, he noted, quote man's increased burning of coal and oil. It's annually adding 600 million tons of carbon dioxide to the air. This blanket of carbon dioxide tends to raise the Earth's atmosphere by intercepting heat waves going from the earth into outer space. Bookchin was well ahead of the curve on a number of environmental issues, including the damage modern agriculture was doing the soil structure, but no one listened to him. Part of the problem was that, according to cultural critic Theodore Roszak, nobody cared to believe the problem was so vast. Another reason why Bookchin was ignored had to do with the fact that he was an anarchist and he suggested a fundamental revolution in human civil organization. As the way to combat climate change. So while it's important to point out, and we're going to spend the rest of this episode talking about all the ******* that oil and gas companies engaged to cover up this stuff, we should note that there were people very accurately predicting the problems in the future as far back as the 1960s. And yeah, it's just it's it's very frustrating when you dig into all this like the number of warnings that we had, but also like, I do think you have to have a little bit of understanding. Like our parents and grandparents and the reason they didn't pay attention to this, because in the 1960s, like, we had all these ******* nuclear weapons that everybody believed were gonna get fired any day. And, like, there was this, this very real worry that, like, the world was going to end at any moment. Like my dad did. Like those those like duck and cover drills where he'd get underneath the table because they were afraid that nukes were going to come. So you can also like, well, you have well, like, it's frustrating that they had these warnings that they didn't heed. There was also a lot of **** going on at the time. Totally be like, no, my dad, bear, my dad also talks about the duck and cover drills. And there's a Museum of nuclear history in Las Vegas that is like, one of the best museum at the Smithsonian Museum of Atomic History. That's all about that era. That is really terrifying. And yeah. And just to stand around some of those bombs, you're just like, Oh yeah, there was a lot going on. There was a lot going on. It was an immediate threat and someone saying, hey, in like, 70 years. Gasoline is gonna be an issue. Like, you can see how, like, other white, like, decent people could have been like, well, **** it. We'll probably figure that out if we have the time to figure that. I now understand why people always refer to the 60s as tumultuous. Yeah, you know, because I'm like, oh, that is what it feels like now. It's *******. Yeah, it's really serious. There's so much to do. There's a lot going on. Like some of it good and some of it really, really bad. Yeah. Yeah, there's something happening here. But what it is ain't exactly clear, you know? Songs about the Sunset strip riots. And I read a really good essay about it by Mike Davis. That cool? Yeah. About how people make fun of it for being just like a riot of some kids. But it was really about the beginning of, like, just intense police militarization in Los Angeles, of being, like, we're going to cut. And the cops were like, beating up teenagers. And so some people, including Gilligan, Bob Denver, came to support the kids on the Sunset strip against the fashion. Wow, Bob. Bob Gilligan is antifa. Yeah, you you gilligan's antifa? You wouldn't use Antifa. Yeah, so civilization trundled along, no one paying attention to the warnings about climate change. And by the end of the 1970s, the American Petroleum Institute had established a committee to monitor the evolving field of climate science. That committee of scientists was allowed to work unimpeded, and they came to the inevitable scientific conclusion. That quote globally catastrophic effects would be evident by the middle of the 21st century if fossil fuel production. Wasn't halted now. Chevron did not exist at this point. But the companies that merged to form it were members of the API, and they knew all of this. In 1977, one of Exxon's senior scientists spoke to a gathering of oil industry executives. He warned them of a general scientific agreement that the use of fossil fuels was changing the climate. In 1978, he updated his warning and stated unequivocally that present thinking holds that man has a time window of five to 10 years before the need for hard decisions regarding changes in energy strategies might become critical. That's 1978. By the 1980s, the early signs of climate change had become very noticeable and the newly formed oil tightens of the day. Exxon and Shell launched internal assessments to predict the impact of fossil fuels on the global climate. In a 1982 report, Exxon scientists predicted that by 2060 Co 2 levels would reach 560 parts per million, twice the pre industrial level. This, they found, would raise average temperatures around the world by two degrees Celsius or more. In 1988, Shell came out with a report of their own. It came to the same findings, but also warned that. CO2 could double well before 2060, possibly as early as 2030. You might expect oil and gas industry scientists to have been deeply compromised by their employer, but other climate scientists who evaluated their work seemed to agree that it was all pretty top notch. They did not hold any punches when reporting to their corporate masters about the danger that these products were going to do to like society. So they had like, really stark warnings about what was going to happen. Shell predicted A1 meter sea level rise at minimum, with a good chance that warming would cause the West. Antarctic sheet to disintegrate, causing a 5 to 6 meter worldwide rise in sea levels, resulting in the complete destruction of multiple nations. Their analysts predicted the disappearance of specific ecosystems or habitat destruction, leading to an increase in runoff, destructive floods, and inundation of low lying farmland. They pointed out that new sources of fresh water would be necessary in this climate, and that changes in temperature would drastically change life for most people. Shell scientists concluded the changes may be the greatest in recorded history, so that's pretty clear. And Exxon scientists were equally direct. They warned about desertification in the American Midwest and other parts of the world, and potentially catastrophic sea level rise, although they also noted optimistically that the problem is not as significant to mankind as a nuclear Holocaust or world family. That's a weird line to draw. I mean, it's bad, but it's not as bad as the end of all life on Earth and atomic Hellfire. Well, I'm sure if you're in the power industry, you must be like, well, we're not as bad as those guys. It's like, it's like coke heads. They're like, oh, I'm not as much of a coke head as that other Coke head. That guy's a coke. Yeah, it's yeah, the Coke head conundrum. You're all cokeheads. You're all cokeheads. That's the that's the problem. I mean, I don't know, maybe if we'd given these people some ecstasy or something back in the 80s, it might have increased their empathy. I don't know why people wanted to put LSD in the the water streams stop everyone from having nuclear war. But, you know, I've in my research come across a lot of Nazis who. Trace their development to acid trips they had. So maybe the solution is really mandate. Yeah. Yeah. It's not uncommon. Like, Neo Nazis are like, yeah, Neo Nazis. Yeah, the original, the OG. The original Nazis were on speed. They were doing lots of speed. Yeah. I don't think you should be allowed to use psychedelic drugs for evil is my personal feeling, but I would support that too. I have seen also just like even with the rise of microdosing, the way people, when people started being like, I'm gonna take acid to come up with. Better ideas for capitalism? That's yeah, that's not great. Was bad. I feel like the right thing might be mandatory MDMA trips for all boardrooms and executives at all multinational corporations. Just you cannot sit down to discuss business unless you are rolling so hard you're chewing your *** **** lips off. It will at least be entertaining. Yeah, I could film it. Yeah, yeah. I'm sure those people are rolling their faces off when they go to their weird, like, retreats on private islands. Oh my God. Yeah, yeah, yeah. But they need to be doing it while they're making, like, financial decisions about where to invest money and stuff. Like, I want. I want to have, like, the CEO of ******* shell, like, announcing their new products while, like, chewing on a ******* glow stick. It's that that would be fun at least. So all these studies. Uh noted the fact that the gradual nature of climate change would work to hide its effects from the world, shell scientists wrote in 1988. With the very long time scales involved, it would be tempting for society to wait until then before doing anything. The potential implications for the world are, however, so large that policy options need to be considered much earlier and the energy industry needs to consider how it should play its part. If the industry did not, they warned, it could be too late to take effective countermeasures to reduce the effects or even stabilize the situation. That's who. Yeah. Hmm. But despite this sober and accurate assessment of the stakes, Shell's report did not actually suggest the company do anything to fight climate change that would have impacted their profitability after all. And I'm going to quote from The Guardian now. In Shell study, the firm argued that the main burden of addressing climate change rests not with the energy industry, but with governments and consumers. And that's not untrue like legally corporate, like corporations that are public like this have a mandate to maximize. Profits and really nothing else. It is the job of governments to regulate them in our current system. The problem is that Shell did not just sit back and wait to be regulated along with the rest of these companies. They actively sought to convince the governments that would regulate them that nothing was wrong when they knew the opposite was the case. And that's really like the core crime that's committed here. It's pretty bad. It's pretty cool, pretty cool and good. For the next 10 years, climate change pushed more and more into the mainstream and an understanding about what? Is happening started to reach well beyond the cloistered halls of gas company research teams. Activists increasingly called for action, and despite knowing that all these people were essentially right, Exxon and Shell took every available effort to stymie them. In February 1995, Showers released a review of the scientific uncertainty and the evolution of energy systems. This was a public review, an unlikely non public reviews that they had released that had shown that all of this was a serious problem, and in this public review, their findings. Conveniently indicated that policies to curb greenhouse gases beyond no regrets measures could be premature, divert economic resources from more pressing needs and further distort markets. So that's cool. But you know what won't distort markets? Molly yeah. The products and services that support this podcast, that is right. Yeah. They are fundamentally different from the products and services that cause this climate change problem we're having, for reasons that I don't feel the need to get into. 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Get premium wireless service from just $15.00 a month and no one expected plot twists at That's Seriously, you'll make your wallet very happy at Mint Mobile. Com slash behind my name is Erica Kelly and I am the host and creator of Southern Freight true crime. There are so many people that just have no idea about some injustices in the world and if you can give a voice to them you can create change. To be able to do it within podcasting is just such a gift. I believe it was 18 months after I got on with Spreaker that I was making enough that I could quit my day job. It was incredible. I always feel like an ambassador for speaker. But that's because I'm passionate about podcasting. It's really easy to use. I always tell people I am so not tech. Took me 5 minutes to get comfortable with spreaker, and when I find a new friend that has an incredible show, I want them to make money. I want them to be able to do what I did. Follow your podcasting dreams. Let's break your handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Get paid to talk about the things you love. Spreaker from iheart. Hey, it's Chuck Wicks from loved country. Talk to Chuck where we bring you what's really happening in the country music family. We also, if you love country, here's the deal. If you love country music, you can be on the podcast. So if you're a fan, got your music, well you can call in anytime. Like, I want to talk about this. Hulk Hogan called in season one. He's like Chuck the hulkster. I love your podcast. I mean Jason Aldean, Jimmy Allen, Carly Pierce, Lauren Elena. So many huge stars have been on love country. Talk to Chuck. Season 2 is going to get even better, going to have the same big giant huge stars. But I think it's time to bring some people in the studio right off the street. You love country music fun. Come talk to Chuck. That's how cool we are. I'm just saying it. I'm saying it out loud. Listen to new episodes of love Country. Talk to Chuck every Monday and Thursday on the Nashville podcast network, available on the iHeartRadio App, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen to podcasts. We're back and we're talking about climate change. So uplifting. Fun times. In 1989, seven years after their own report and one year after shells, Exxon spearheaded the creation of the Global Climate Coalition. This was a group made-up of businesses from industries whose profits were tied to fossil fuels. They carried out a massive 13 year long propaganda campaign with the chief goal of preventing the US from signing on to the Kyoto. Protocol more broadly, they also sought to drum up mass confusion over whether or not there was a scientific consensus on climate change, even though all of their scientists had reached a consensus on climate change. In the early 1990s, they published a backgrounder for lawmakers and journalists framed as an objective review of the scientific literature. It concluded that the role of greenhouse gases and climate change is not well understood, and that scientists differ on the question of whether human activity was warming the globe. The New York Times reports quote even as the coalition worked to sway opinion, its own scientific and technical experts were advising that the science backing the role of greenhouse gases in global warming could not be refuted. The scientific basis for the greenhouse effect and the potential impact of human emissions of greenhouse gases such as CO2 on climate is well established and cannot be denied, the experts wrote in an internal report compiled for the coalition in 1995. And this is where, like, I'm going to spend a lot of this episode talking about, like, corporate executives and stuff who were major drivers of this. Part of me wonders, like, to what extent do we call these scientist ********? Because on one hand, they're doing really good scientific work to show very clearly the danger. And on the other hand, they're watching the company that is hiring them to do this lie about what they know in order to maximize profits. And most of them aren't coming out and and saying anything about it, and it does. You know, they're scientists there. They didn't get into that field to go sit in front of cameras and fight the power. But at the same time, like, it's there's a question of complicity there too. I think that's like in the Theranos stock, they got into that a lot. And it's like the people that hire scientists and then the scientists are like, here's the deal. And they're like, no, no, no, we didn't want to hear that. Yeah. And at what point does the scientist have a responsibility to make waves? I don't know. It's it's a difficult question. So the effort to basically spread the belief that there was like this massive disagreement over climate change among scientists was masterminded by a number of individuals, but probably the most prominent among them was a guy named Lee Raymond, who was the CEO of Exxon Mobil for the bulk of this. For reasons that elude me, mainstream journalists in the late 1990s considered him a credible source on whether or not scientists agreed about climate change. Raymond has been described as notoriously skeptical about climate change and fundamentally opposed to government interference. On the matter he chaired the there you go. The fundamentally opposed to government interference is why people. Took him seriously, listened to him. Yeah. That's what they wanted to hear. Yeah. And that is what happened because I remember Michael Crighton, too, was one of those guys, which was good Lord. He sure was very surprising. But they were like, can't have the government meddling in our environment. We're not as free if the government stops these companies from lying to us until the world that is right. Floods. Yeah, it's very dumb. So Raymond was the chair of the American Petroleum Institute's Climate Change Committee for two terms in March of 2000. He signed off on an ExxonMobil ad titled Do No Harm. This ran in numerous magazines and newspapers, including the New York Times. The ad acknowledged that while climate change was probably real, more needed to be learned about it before taking any action. It claimed that the Kyoto protocols goal for a 30% reduction in fossil fuel energy would, quote, require extensive diversion of human and financial resources that were critical to the well-being of future generations. It noted that although it is hard to predict what the. Weather is going to be this weekend. We know with certainty that climate change policies, unless properly formulated, will restrict life itself. You sense a *******. Very cool. Yeah, other unknown ******* is whoever the **** wrote the copy for that. String them up. The next week Exxon ran another ad unsettled science based off of a 1996 temperature study in the Sargasso Sea. The basic argument was that this showed the world had started warming before people had started burning fossil fuels. Therefore, we couldn't really say that this was a man made problem. Two months later, Raymond presided over a giant oil and gas industry meeting where he made the same point. His employees. He did this while ignoring the fact that the author of the study had said this about his ad two months earlier. I believe ExxonMobil has been misleading in its use of the Sargasso Sea data. There's really no way these results bear on the question of human induced climate warming. I think the sad thing is that a company with the resources of ExxonMobil is exploiting the data for political purposes. Now. Lee Raymond is still alive, 81 years Young. He's a registered Republican and he was succeeded in his job by Rex Tillerson who will be talking about a bit later. Uh. Lee Raymond's net worth is estimated to be $503 million. In addition to being a climate skeptic, Raymond headed Exxon. While it was one of the very last large corporations to explicitly exclude gay employees from its anti discrimination policy. This seems to have been very important to Raymond. He was in charge during the Exxon takeover of Mobil when Exxon rescinded Mobile's anti discrimination policy which had included gay people. So Raymond's ******* sucks. Yeah, he's really ******* seven in a field of sucking like he ******* is. Yeah, in the land of the people who suck very hard. Lee Raymond sucks so hard that other people around him seem to suck less by comparison. Yep, that's also sucks. Listen, we Raymond hate him. I hate him, Robert. He's not a good person. And his son, John T Raymond, is active in the oil and gas. And he probably sucks too, right? He absolutely sucks too. And his net worth is an estimated $588 million. You got a billion or so betwixt them, no? Yeah. Well, Exxon and Shell both spun up increasingly elaborate and expensive disinformation campaigns to hide the truth from the public. Their internal reports continued to paint a dire picture of the future. Most startling is a 1998 planning document titled Tina for there is no alternative document positive. Yeah, the document posited a series of massive, damaging storms on the East Coast in 2010, triggered by climate change. The company predicted that these storms would force action on climate change. Quote Although it is not clear whether the storms are caused by climate change, people are not willing to take further chances. After all, two successive IPCC reports since 1995 have reinforced the human connection to climate change. Following the storms, a coalition of environmental NGO's brings a class action lawsuit against the US government and fossil fuel companies on the grounds of neglecting what scientists, including their own, have been saying for years that something must be done. So this is like a a fake future that they posit, where there's horrible storms caused by climate change and there's a massive. Groundswell of rage and lawsuits against these companies for doing exactly what they knew they were doing. This is like the scientists telling them we could get in trouble for this **** that we've been doing, like we should change our ways. Unfortunately, their prediction of horrible hurricanes spurring climate action was wildly optimistic. A a very inaccurate prediction about the level of ***** given by the people of the United States. The 2010 hurricane season was, in fact, devastating. It would go on to tie for third most active hurricane season in Atlantic History, tying with both subsequent years, 2011 and 2012, 392 people died and $7.4 billion in damage was done. This would be widely eclipsed by the 2016 hurricane system. Which killed 748 people and did $17.49 billion in damage. The 2017 season was even worse, claiming 3364 lives and doing nearly $300 billion in damage now. 2018 and 2019 were comparatively mild years, but both still did more economic damage than 2012 season. So that's cool. Pretty cool. Horrible. Pretty cool. You'll know it didn't happen. A bunch of NGO's and activists bringing suit against the federal government and oil companies and forcing change on the matter because. That's why. Because Exxon scientists overestimated how decent people are. Oh, that's why. Surreal bummer. Because the we'll figure it out in the future. Thing is also like those people in the future can get ******. Yeah, long as I'm here. I mean, I do hate the people of the future with a burning passion. No, I feel bad for them. I used to be jealous of them because I thought the future would be cooler, but now I'm just like, Nope, nobody's gonna talk to anybody, and then they're gonna die. We got we got a little taste of the 20th century, which is honestly probably the best thing we could have had. You know, a little bit of the prosperity before it all goes to hell, but you also get to be here to see it go to hell. Yeah. By bolt cutters. Millennials roll by cutters. It's gonna be a fun time. So she was also a member of the Global Climate Coalition. But to their very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very minimal credit. They left the Global climate Coalition in 1999 because they actually agreed with the emissions target set by the Kyoto Protocol. So that's something if you're if you're going to pick the least ****** gas company, I guess it's might be shell, although, again, they still did. A lot of this and are responsible for huge amounts of this. It's not a high bar. It's like picking which of your Nazis is least responsible for the Holocaust. Yeah, they're still all Nazis. So yeah, before you give Shell too much credit, you should know that in 1996, despite having a very clear understanding of the consequences of climate change, shells annual management brief suggested quote although climate change is a long term issue, today's responses do not have to be long term, irreversible actions. Need to be avoided. So, like, we shouldn't have people fixing this. Don't think about it. Just keep going. Beep, beep. As the Millennium turned, it became increasingly obvious that scientific consensus suggested that irreversible action really did need to be taken in order to avoid irreversible consequences. Exxon and Shell both began investing fortunes into a series of think tanks, including many of the same think tanks that had helped the tobacco industry fight against stricter laws about cigarette marketing and smoking. Because you like, really? We talk about like, that big court case and the billions they paid in fines, but they made so much more money from lying to everybody about cigarettes for forever. Look, they can they all be bad? It they. So there's like it's, it's very worrying when you start comparing people to the Nazis because in terms of like the personal level of responsibility or odiousness of these individuals as human beings, there's no comparison. But when you do talk about like one of the things that really interests me is the Nuremberg trials and the the the ethical arguments around them. So like part of one of the big questions that a lot of people fairly had about the Nuremberg trials is we are charging people for things that weren't crimes when they committed them, where they committed them. And that is an unsettling precedent. Because it can be used to justify some really messed up **** potentially. And the reason that most folks came around on that is they were like, well, if we don't try these people and punish them all very publicly, this will keep happening and nothing was done. They punished them and it's still kept happening. Well, not the same way, like, no, but when you look at where we are now in terms of like people doing full scale, like technologically aided genocides, yes. And also it feels like we're at a really scary point right now where Holocaust survivors are almost all gone. And like, civil rights era people are going to be gone soon. And when those people are gone, you know, how do you convince people this stuff even happened? Let alone that it is like relevant. And the same thing is happening now. I, I think we got about 60 or 70 years of people like the worst people in the world being slightly more careful as a result of the Nuremberg trials. And then they started to push again and they found out, you know, there were actually a couple of moments where there was pushback against them. But overall, the neoliberal world order failed in reining in that kind of thing, and now it is becoming more common. So it does require you can't just punish them once. Publicly. But you do have to punish these people publicly. And part of me want, you know, they punish them. Too late was what the other problem was. There was a lot of opportunity for other countries, for the world to step in and say, hey, this is ****** **. I've talked about this before, but my grandmother was a German Jew who was an athlete who was supposed to be in the 1936 Olympics. And Hitler kept her on the team for a very long. They kept her on the team for a long time because they were like, unsure if the world was going to boycott the Olympics. If the Germans were just very upfront about wanting to do genocides and ultimately they cut her from the team because they didn't want you to win and embarrass them, but also nobody pulled out. I think maybe 1 country pulled out, but everybody just let the Nazi Olympics happen and you know they they maybe didn't know what what Germany was doing and just didn't care because it because people are bad. Yeah. You know, it's some Americans like Henry Ford were like into it also. They were a lot of Americans were into. Yeah. And so I think we also countries underestimated that. Yeah. It it takes a level of to stop all of this kind of behavior. It takes a lot of aggressive commitment to ******* people up when they do this stuff. And I have to wonder if when it came out, what that the tobacco industry had suppressed the truth about the the health dangers of tobacco, if a bunch of those guys had gone to prison, if, I don't know, maybe some of those guys had been ******* like literally sentenced to to hang for their crimes for what is effectively mass murder. Would the same **** have happened in the oil and gas industry? Might some of those executives been like, oh **** instead of hiring the same firms that had protected cigarette companies with some of these guys been like, we have to be really ******* careful. This could rich people are just so protected that even when they do get punished, they get punished in such a different way than a regular person or a poor person that it doesn't have the same effectiveness. They get golden handcuffs, you know, to stay in their mansion or whatever. That doesn't have the same effect on people. As if, you know, they were gonna go to solitary confinement or, as you say, be hung in the public square. I personally feel like maybe that kind of public execution will come back at some point because things have gotten so medieval. Why not? Why wouldn't that come? But I'm also worried it'll be of, like, the people that we like are going to that. That's part of the problem. Yeah, but I I do. I think that. Yeah, well, we'll talk about that a little bit later. So, yeah, these guys hire a bunch of tobacco industry, like former tobacco industry think tanks to, like, do the same thing that they've done to argue against more laws about cigarette marketing and smoking. And I'm going to read a quote from the Guardian on this. Why? To hide their fingerprints. Exxon, which quickly proved to have the deepest pockets at least until the Koch brothers surpassed it in 2005, kicked off its spending spree on these think tanks and other nonprofit advocacy groups in 1998, a year before it merged with Mobil and Kenneth Cohen became the company's VP. Republican governmental affairs in January 2007, UCSD issued a report that revealed that between 1998 and 2005, Exxon Mobil had spent at least $16 million on a network of more than 40 anti regulation think tanks and advocacy groups to launder its message. A few years later, when asked about the report by a greenwire reporter, Cohen said that ExxonMobil had stopped funding them. That claim is as preposterous today as it was eight years ago. Just last year, the company spent 1.9 million on 15 climate science denier groups, including the American Enterprise Institute, the American Legislative. Exchange Council, Manhattan Institute, and US Chamber of Commerce and 10 of last year's grantees were among those cited in UCSD 2007 report. All told, Greenpeace has documented that Exxon Mobil has spent $31 million since 1998 on denier groups, but there is good reason to suspect that that's not even half of it. And in fact the numbers on this are really hard. But it could be like 510 times that much. We'll never know really. Now. Like any good, unfathomably evil company, Exxon and its comrades hid much, and perhaps most of what they spent on disinformation. In 2015, an anonymous former executive with the Conscience revealed to the Union of Concerned Scientists that ExxonMobil had paid $10 million per year from 1998 to 2005 on what he called Black Ops. And we have no idea what form all of this Black Ops took, but I'd be ******* shocked if some of it didn't wind up into the pockets of guys like Ben Shapiro. You know, they just, they, they, they, they. The goal here, as always, is to make it seem like there is a lively debate about whether climate change is dangerous and action needs to be taken. Umm. Which they know is not true, but like my dad still believes that, that it's there's not scientific consensus, and it's because these companies succeeded very, very well in brainwashing. There's also just contrarians, just people that will just think the opposite of whatever is true, you know, we'll just be like. Yes, but those contrarians only are able to have an impact on the public discourse when they receive funding, right? Funding that allows them to buy Facebook ads, funding that allows them to influence these algorithms to pay for the reach that they need. If it's just this guy who has no credentials thinks climate change is ******** that doesn't mean anything. But if it's the chairman of the Climate Research Committee, this company with enough money to put out ads in the New York Times, this guy says could be saved. The New York Times Fault also for taking those ads. Oh, absolutely, they they bear some complicity for sure, for running any of these things as though they're both sides to this debate. Absolutely, 100%. The New York Times is partly culpable in this, for sure. Just stating facts. It's frustrating because like, I don't know who exactly. I there's so much additional research to be done as I don't know who, because it's someone, some individual person or group of people at the New York Times made the choice to take that money, and in fairness to the times as an organization. A lot of the evidence for this article came from incredible reporting done by times reporters who clearly are furious about all this. Yeah, well, I think a lot of these big organizations, one thing that's key to understanding them is that they're actually totally disorganized. You know? Yes. You think that a place with a big name is gonna be the most well organized ship because they will have been doing it for so long. But even from like section to section, there's total, you know, people don't know what anyone's doing in another cubicle over. So I think decisions. Like that, some of the really bad decisions made by newspapers, especially this year, I think they're just coming from somebody at the top who's just like, you know what? I like Bloomberg, let's give him an editorial or something, you know, like he's my friend. Which again, comes that back to the rich people all protecting each other. And that's why things don't change. It's got really angry. But you know what doesn't need to change? Because it's perfect. Molly, what's that? The products and services that support this podcast. Amen. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. There's no trapping you into a two year contract. You're opening the bill to find all these nuts fees. There's no luring you in with free subscriptions or streaming services that you'll forget to cancel and then be charged full price for none of that. For anyone who hates their phone Bill, Mint Mobile offers premium wireless for just $15.00 a month. Mint Mobile will give you the best rate whether you're buying one or for a family and at Mint. Family start at 2 lines. All plans come with unlimited talk and text, plus high speed data delivered on the nation's largest 5G network. You can use your own phone with any mint mobile plan and keep your same phone number along with all your existing contacts. Just switch to Mint mobile and get premium wireless service starting at 15 bucks a month. 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When you want to be a better problem solver, therapy can get you there. Visit behind today to get 10% off your first month. That's better So by now we imagine that you've seen the theories on Tik T.O.K. You maybe even heard the rumors from your friends and loved ones. But are any of the stories about government conspiracies and cover ups actually true? The answer is surprisingly or unsurprisingly, yes. For more than a decade, we here at stuff they don't want you to know have been seeking answers to these questions, sometimes their answers that people would rather us not explore. Now we're sharing this research with you. For the first time ever in a book format, you can preorder stuff they don't want you to know. Now it's the new book from us, the creators of the podcast and video series. You can turn back now or read the stuff they don't want you to know. Available for pre-order now, it's stuff you should read or wherever you find your favorite books. We're back. We're talking about how the system that we live under, both economically and in terms of the way our media organs work, is is fundamentally fine and doesn't need to have anything but minor changes made. And you certainly should not be, for example, purchasing machetes, bolt cutters, other forms of munitions, armor, none of that's necessary. Things are good. Tiny changes will solve. Everything's not using plastic bottles so much. That's going to if we get rid of straws, we're going to fix this **** right? Yeah. Glass straws are lovely. Glass straws, everything made of glass. Make cars out of glass. Glass cars to go to Mars. Glass cars, glass hearts like that. ABBA song abba's. Great. Perfect. Solve the problem. You know what? We can end this episode early. Sophie, let's let's play this out. Yeah. Everybody just listened to ABBA. We'll be fine if you change your mind. That's not Abbott isn't the 1st 2009, that is. Take a chance you've never seen. There's so many hits that I've heard so many hits. It's weird that one of the most popular songs in the history of human music is a song by like a Scandinavian band about a bunch of Mexican revolutionaries. Hell yeah, it's such a weird. And it's based off of another completely different like a weird like a like a Spanish love song or something like, it's pop is amazing. Yeah, it's great. ExxonMobil is close lipped about their Black Ops budget, and I guess it wouldn't really be a Black Ops budget if they weren't. But they've actually admitted to a surprising amount of what they've done. In a 2015 PBS News Hour interview, Kenneth Cohen, Exxonmobil's vice president of public and Governmental Affairs, was asked by host Judy Woodruff about an allegation New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman made during a taped segment aired before Cohen's interview. Schneiderman had announced a week earlier that he was investigating ExxonMobil for misleading shareholders and citizens. Climate change and he had accused the company of funding climate denial. Woodruff asked Kenneth Cohen. Has Exxon been funding these organizations? And Cohen replied, well, the answer is yes, and I will let those organizations respond for themselves. So that's cool. Right? Now, I'm going to quote from a Huffington Post article on the matter now discussing the fallout to that 1982 climate change report leaking out back in 2015. Quote, Cohen and other Exxon Mobil officials, including CEO Rex Tillerson and the four mentioned Richard Kiel hit back. With a flurry of press releases, newspaper columns, TV and radio interviews, and tweets right out-of-the-box, they attacked the credibility of inside climate news and the Los Angeles Times, calling them activists and mischaracterizing their reporting. Activists deliberately cherry picked statements attributed to various company employees to wrongly suggest definitive conclusions were reached decades ago by company researchers, Cohen said in an October 21st press release. For example, these activists took those statements out of context and ignored other readily available statements demonstrating that our researchers recognize the developing nature of climate change. At the time, which in fact mirrored global understanding. So let's talk about Kenneth Cohen for a little bit, since we've just established the role that he had in all of this. Cohen is a lifetime Exxon employee and a lawyer. He joined the company back in 1977 and was present on its spin team in 1989 during the nightmarish Exxon Valdez crash, which deserves its own separate episode. When all the inconvenient information about Exxon blatantly spreading this information about climate change came out, Kenneth wound up on the front lines of the company spin team again. I found a largely positive interview with Ken on the corporate show website Provoke Media. It's framed as a Q&A to Kenneth. Their question what's the best advice you ever received? Kenneth responds never stop trying to learn. There's always more to know. What do you enjoy most about working in PR? To which Kenneth responds? The daily challenge of explaining what we do, why we do it, and the benefits we bring to society. And lastly, who inspires you? My daughter Devon. So that's nice. Guy loves his daughter. We all love our daughters. Right. My dad left me a voicemail in the middle of this recording saying, hey, it's dad. Happy Valentine's Day. Call me back. There you go. Nice bad moment. I bet Kenneth sends his daughter Devin messages like that. And when I think of Kenneth's daughter Devin, I can't help but recall a passage from shells 1988 report on climate change. Quote the changes in climate being considered here are at an unaccustomed distance and time for future planning, even beyond the lifetime of most of the present decision makers. But not beyond intimate family connection. So they're saying the people making decisions at our companies about what to do about climate change will not live to see the effects of climate change, but their children. As a fun fact, Kenneth's daughter, Devon, has never lived through a year that was cooler, on average, than the year before it, and her dad has dedicated much of his life to obscuring this fact. That's neat, isn't it? Take back my ohhh now. The fact that climate change is impacts are undeniable now, even to the bennest of shapiros means that the PR flacks for Exxon and Shell and their fellow oil and gas giants have had to work overtime to counter an increasing stream of negative publicity. One of Exxonmobil's tactics has been to point out over the last 30 years that the company scientists have published a huge amount of peer reviewed climate research. Quote our scientists have contributed climate research and related policy analysis to more than 50 papers in peer reviewed publications. All out in the open. They participated in the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change since its inception in 1988 and were involved in the National Academy of Sciences Review of the third U.S. National Climate Assessment Report. And all this is technically correct. The best kind of correct. Exxon scientists did in fact publish 53 climate papers between 1983 and 2014. And you may remember earlier when I said that the climate research done for these companies internally was top notch. That is true. I found a review of these 53. Studies by Dana Nuccitelli for the Guardian quote I reviewed all 53 of the papers referenced by Exxon spokesman and they indeed consist of high quality climate research. Most of them implicitly or explicitly endorsed the expert consensus on human caused global warming. None minimized or rejected it. This means that there is 100% consensus on human caused global warming among Exxon's peer reviewed climate research, even higher than the 97% consensus in the rest of the peer reviewed literature. So Exxon cites this, and they do not do so inaccurately. But it is not as exculpatory as the company seems to think it is. A recent study in the proceedings of the National Academies of Science found that after promising to stop funding climate denial groups in 2007, Exxon gave $2.3 million to the American Legislative Exchange Council and several Congress members who denied climate consensus and fought against climate policies. They also continued to fund scientists who published work disputing the global warming consensus, even though their own paid scientists were completely in agreement. About the reality Exxon gave contrarian scientist Willie soon over $1,000,000, and that's just what they spent on one guy. Exxon and Shell and their fellow corporations spent 10s of millions of dollars hiring contrarian scientists and skeptical journalists to confuse the issue of climate change. And the research shows that this campaign was startlingly effective. I found a 2015 study published in the National Academy of Sciences by researchers from Harvard and Cambridge. They note the comprehensive data include all individual and organizational. Actors in the climate change counter movement 164 organizations, as well as all written and verbal text produced by this network between 1993 and 2013. Forty 1785 texts and more than 39 million words. Two main findings emerge. First, that organizations with corporate funding were more likely to have written and disseminated texts meant to polarize the climate change issue. 2nd, and more importantly, that corporate funding influences the actual thematic content of these polarization efforts and the discursive prevalence of that thematic content. Over time, a more recent 2017 report by Joffrey Sopran and Naomi Oreskes from Harvard expanded on these findings by analyzing hundreds of Exxonmobil's internal reports and research papers and comparing them to its paid advertorials, most of which were placed in the New York Times op-ed section from 1972 to 2001. They found the company consistently spread information that directly contradicted the findings of its own scientists. And it must be said, the New York Times let them do this without. Any meaningful fact checking? So that's cool. Pretty cool. You happy about all this? Oh, so happy. We're just, like, frowning at each other. Yeah, yeah, it's good stuff. I don't have many jokes about this, but I do want to emphasize that I am not joking about the bolt cutters. Enjoy your bennest of Shapiro's line. I mean, thank you. Didn't want to interrupt. You were flowing. Thank you. Interrupt you. But I just want to commend you on that. Thank you. I take a lot of pride in that. Sometimes dunking on old Benny Shaps is the the only good part of my day. So I try to do it regularly. Someone should dunk him in a trash can. Someone should. And he would. You would have ample room left in the trash can. I think one of those mini trash cans, like for a dorm little paper. Paper one. Yeah, like, yeah, one of those would fit. Now you know what wouldn't fit. I I don't have an ad transition, but I am going to put some tamales in the microwave because I have to go to the gym after this. So I'm gonna ask for like 30 seconds here. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. There's no trapping you into a two year contract. You're opening the bill to find all these nuts fees. There's no luring you in with free subscriptions or streaming services that you'll forget to cancel and then be charged full price for none of that. For anyone who hates their phone Bill, Mint Mobile offers premium wireless for just $15.00 a month. Mint Mobile will give you the best rate whether you're buying. Or for a family. And it meant family start at 2 lines. All plans come with unlimited talk and text, plus high speed data delivered on the nation's largest 5G network. You can use your own phone with any mint mobile plan and keep your same phone number along with all your existing contacts. Just switch to Mint mobile and get premium wireless service starting at 15 bucks a month. Get premium wireless service from just $15.00 a month and no one expected plot twist at That's Seriously, you'll make your wallet. Very happy at Mint Mobile becom behind. So by now we imagine that you've seen the theories on tick tock. You maybe even heard the rumors, your friends and loved ones. But are any of the stories about government conspiracies and cover ups actually true? The answer is surprisingly or unsurprisingly, yes. For more than a decade, we here at stuff they don't want you to know have been seeking answers to these questions, sometimes their answers that people would rather us not explore. Now we're sharing this research with you for the first time ever in a book format, you can pre-order stuff they don't want you to know now. It's the new book from us, the creators of the podcast and video series. You can turn back now or read the stuff they don't want you to know. Available for pre-order now, it's stuff you should read or wherever you find your favorite books. My name is Erica Kelly and I am the host and creator of Southern Freight true crime. There are so many people that just have no idea about some injustices in the world and if you can give a voice to them you can create change. To be able to do it within podcasting is just such a gift. I believe it was 18 months after I got on with speaker that I was making enough that I could quit my day job. It was incredible. I always feel like an ambassador for speaker. But that's because I'm passionate about podcasting it's really easy to use. I always tell people I am so not tech took me 5 minutes to get comfortable with speaker and when I find a new friend that has an incredible show. I want them to make money. I want them to be able to do what I did follow your podcasting dreams. Let's break your handle the hosting creation distribution and monetization of your podcast go to that's get paid to talk about the things you love. Spreaker from iheart. We're back, we're back. And we were talking about how though I talk about bolt cutters because they they are both symbolically powerful and have utility. If you really want to get through locks and even fences most effectively, an angle grinder is is going to be a lot more practical for a sizable amount of the population, in part because of the arm strength and upper body strength that bolt cutters require to really get through a thick lock. An angle grinder is going to cut through a lot of those much easier. These are just pieces of information that I hand out. No reason. Angle grinder? Angle grinder? Yeah, and you're gonna want like like a solar battery or something that can at least run it for, you know, a couple of minutes at a time so that you can get through stuff and potentially charge if the grids down. There's a lot of things to consider here. Good to know, good to know. Always good to know about angle grinders for no specific purpose. So yeah, big companies like the companies we've talked about today are very good at obscuring the precise individuals responsible for their most shady activities. For example, that a rescue supron paper that I I I cited a little earlier does not mention Rex Tillerson directly or and neither does the Nas paper that came before it. And you might conclude from that that Tillerson, you know, big company, maybe you didn't have anything to do with the cover up of climate change, but Rex Tillerson was the production general manager of Exxon Mobil starting in 1999. He was a director starting in 2004 and the chairman and CEO starting in 2006. And thanks to a Superfund lawsuit launched by the state of New York. We do know a quite a lot about how he obscured his role in all this and why there's not a lot of direct information on what he may have done to further obscure. The reality of climate change. So starting in 2015, New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, my very favorite cop, launched an investigation into Exxonmobil's history of lying to the entire world about climate change. Which is, in an ideal world, what police would spend most of their time doing is looking into guys like this. Like this is what I want that brainpower going towards, not, I don't know, stopping fair jumpers. So the actual case wound up being mostly about whether or not Exxon had misled shareholders by hiding the real costs of climate change and thus overvaluing. Their stock. And it is profoundly dumb, and a powerful symbol of how ****** our civilization is, that ExxonMobil did the moral equivalent of drunk drive the planet into a brick wall, and the only thing they got tried for was maybe lying to shareholders. But that's not on Schneiderman. If you read about the case and what he did, his goal was very clearly to take as big a swing at ExxonMobil as he possibly could, because it would lead to a bunch of documents getting released upon discovery and put as many of the ******** as possible on the stand to answer for their actions. In other words, Schneiderman was creating a record of their perfidy. Even if he wasn't actually able to punish them for much, and in this he was successful. One of the bilious ******** he got on the stand was Rex Tillerson. Under oath, Tillerson denied that Exxon had misled investors about the risks it faced from future climate change regulations. He described a detailed system he had ordered created in order to manage those risks. But you'll notice there was no system developed to manage the actual risks of climate change. That was not Rex's job, and even then, Rex claimed repeatedly to have forgotten important details that were critical. With the case, and I'm going to quote now from a write up on inside climate News quote, much of the case revolves around Exxon's use of two different estimates for the financial impacts of future regulations, a higher estimate which it's disclosed publicly, and a lower one which it used internally and did not disclose. In 2014, top executives decided to align the two estimates and their reasoning for doing so may prove pivotal to the case. The attorney General's office obtained notes connected with an internal presentation given to Exxon's management in May 2014 that listed reasons for making the change, including that recent reports to investors. That implied that Exxon was using the higher estimate when evaluating investments, when in fact it used the lower one. So Tillerson was asked, do you recall anyone recommending that corporate management aligned the cost for this reason? And he responded, I don't recall any discussion of that nature. He was asked, do you recall any discussion about aligning the two estimates? He said, I don't. He was asked, do you recall why they were aligned? He said I don't and you get the picture. He just basically denied as often as possible and said he didn't recall any of the things that were done by Exxon that were potentially criminal. This pattern repeated itself over and over with Rex's answers. And during the trial, New York's attorney stumbled across something even more damning that explains why there's just not much documentation as to what Rex Tillerson may have illegally ordered. During discovery, Exxon was obligated to hand over a huge tranche of emails from Tillerson, the CEO of a publicly traded company like this. You cannot delete their emails because, like, it's it's potentially actionable in a wide variety of lawsuits and stuff like, you have to you have to maintain that stuff. It's it's like a legal requirement. But when Exxon handed over Rex's emails, Schneiderman and his lawyers were shocked to find that there weren't very many of them. And that they didn't like a lot of stuff that you would have expected a CEO to weigh in on. We have no record of Rex Tillerson saying anything about this is not because he was a hands off boss. This is because for seven years the CEO of Exxon Mobil used a fake e-mail address to do his business. Using the alias Wayne Tracker, he handled all of his official communications with this e-mail address. He had tracker as his last name for his Wayne tracker was the name of another employee, but he had tracker. Or an e-mail he didn't want to be tracked. Yes, I I understand the irony here, but it wasn't. Wow. Yeah. So Tillerson's justification for why this was not clearly criminal is that his official CEO e-mail just got too many messages and he needed a fake account so he could get some work done. Now Molly just made her face like. That's pretty frustrating. And what's more frustrating is that when they found out about this, the state of New York demanded access to the Wayne Tracker emails and she shucks, wouldn't you know it. Exxon realized then that they'd accidentally deleted all of them. Oh, what a what a goof. What a goat. A goof. What a goof. Of course, this is not at all shady, since the CEO was communicating under a fake e-mail. Exxon just forgot to preserve his emails because he wasn't using his official CEO e-mail account. Anyone could have made this mistake? Yeah, OK, who can see that? It's fine. It's fine. Nothing's wrong. He wasn't committing blatant crimes and then coming up with an incredibly obvious justification for why he hid the evidence of those crimes. That can't be what happened. Cool, cool stuff. On February 4th, 2020, Rex Tillerson spoke at an oil and gas industry conference in Houston. During his speech, he revealed that he has grave doubts as to whether or not human beings can do anything to fight climate change. Quote, with respect to our ability to influence it, I think that's still an open question. Our belief in the ability to influence it is based upon some very, very complicated climate models that have very wide outcomes. I wanna note here that Rex Tillerson is worth an estimated $300 million, so Yep. So you just just three. Most of these guys aren't really super, super, super rich. They're just super super rich. Yeah. The state of New York eventually lost its case against ExxonMobil, according to Forbes. Quote, the lawsuit failed because the notion that the company was attempting to obfuscate the impact of future governmental actions to address climate change and cheated shareholders was simply untenable. Now, this is a major bummer, but the good news is that numerous lawsuits are still under way across the country. Rhode Island, the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen's Associations, and a number of other groups and governments have started tossing lawsuits at the oil and gas companies responsible for covering up the crisis, Chevron. We have not talked enough about today is a defendant in at least eight of these lawsuits. They are guilty of essentially the same basic **** as Exxon and Shell. Their CEO, Michael Wirth, is new to the field, and he's made vague statements about wanting to move into renewables and fight climate change while increasing the rate at which Chevron sucks out gas and ***** out poison into the atmosphere. His network is probably around $50 million minimum, but is is is off like there's a good chance is much higher. Now, a few CEOs back for Chevron. Uh, Kenneth T Derr was the guy in charge. Here's something he said in 1994. I believe we have an obligation to use our technology to minimize the environmental impact of our operations and products. With disturbs me is not the ever present and perfectly valid public requirements for health and safety in the use of energy. Rather, I'm distressed by a growing conviction, though oil does not and cannot meet those requirements. That's distressing. Here's something else, he said. A 1991 poll showed that 74% of Americans think the greenhouse effect is a problem and 41% believe it's a serious problem. And some people in our industry tend to simply wave the issue away by saying that the threat is unproven. That's true, but it's not an appropriate response. It's true that the, the, the the the threat is unproven. Hate this guy. On an unrelated note, here's something else Kenneth Teder said publicly prior to the Iraq War. Quote Iraq possesses huge reserves of oil and gas. I'd love Chevron to have access to them. Cool pieces of ****. Now, the folks that I've named today are just the very tip of the iceberg and some of the most culpable people out of the hundreds and maybe thousands of villains. It's clear that Eric Schneiderman strategy, while better than nothing, is not going to bring any of these people to justice. But there are some promising leads into how we can. Richard Head, a Norwegian academic, has spent more than 10 years trying to figure out the start to the answer of the question, how do we make these people pay? He actually helped to create a new branch of scientific research. Called attribution science. And the goal of attribution science is to take the blame for things like climate change off of the individual consumer and figure out who is actually responsible for the bulk of the consumption, according to Politico quote. Over time, he recognized there was a flaw in that approach. Individual consumers can make choices only among what's already on the market, but who determined what was on the market? Other, larger forces had shaped an economy dependent on fossil fuels, he realized. Companies who developed the markets for fossil fuels and influence decisions to build the infrastructure that supported. He asked himself, shouldn't the companies who profited from those decisions play a role in mitigating them? Without world governments making a little progress towards reducing, making little progress towards reducing emissions, perhaps pressuring companies whose products were causing the harm might have more effect. In 2013, he's research revealed that 90 companies had contributed 2/3 of the world's industrial emissions. He could pinpoint directly the share of emissions for which modern industrial companies are responsible. Chevron is number 2. On that list of 90, Exxon is #4, shell is #7. The data about what precisely these individual companies are responsible is out there. We know how much of the coming catastrophe we can blame on each of them. The only question left is, what are we going to do about it? The oil and gas industry has answered that question for itself. Since the Paris Agreement in 2015, the world's five largest oil and gas companies have spent a combined $1 billion at minimum lobbying to stop climate change regulations. $195 million a year has been spent by these companies on branding campaigns to suggest that they support an ambitious climate agenda. So while they are funding efforts to stop any regulations from them polluting the environment, they also have a massive branding campaign, like aimed at making people think that they're hard at work. Researching alternative methods of fuel and you've probably seen the results of this and billboards and bus stop ads that brag about, for example, Exxonmobil's algae biofuels research. Yes. Yeah, you've seen some of that. I've I've seen a lot of that even, especially in the city of Los Angeles. Yeah. They claim that algae biofuels offer some of the greatest promise for next generation biofuels. There are tiny Organism ad campaign features, colorful central illustrations of bright green, healthy looking algae under microscopes and in specimen. Stars. They brag that their goal of 10,000 barrels of biofuel a day represents the future of clean energy. And that sounds like a lot, right? They're like, look, we're going to be making 10,000 barrels a day of biofuel. That's a lot, right? That's so much fuel, isn't it? Yeah. What they don't like to bring up is that this would equal .2% of their current refinery capacity. It's just nothing. Like it doesn't matter point 2.2%. The American Petroleum Institute still exists and currently spends its time lobbying against things like subsidies for electric cars. They spent an estimated $539 million during the 2018 election cycle, according to influence map quote. During this time, ExxonMobil was by far the most prolific spender, racking up over $400,000 in four weeks on over 360 individual political ads. The ads urge rejecting specific ballot initiatives while promoting the benefits of increased fossil fuel production. Facebook's data indicates that Exxon Mobil's ads made over 10 million. Impressions in this time with users in Colorado, Texas and Louisiana. And they put together a really fun map showing that, for example, BP, Chevron, and the Western States Petroleum Association spent $1.5 million in the state of Washington to convince people to vote no on ballot initiative 1631, which would have placed an annual rising fee on CO2. And this ballot initiative was in fact defeated in the state of Washington. They spent $200,000 in Alaska on the stand for. Ask a vote no on one campaign. That money was contributed by Exxon Mobil and BP. The ballot initiative in that campaign would have increased environmental protections and impacted resource development. It would reduce the amount of places they could suck oil out of, and that ballot initiative was defeated. They spent another $200,000 in Colorado, the culprits there with the Exxon Mobil and the American Petroleum Institute. This was to defeat a ballot initiative that would have limited areas available for oil and gas development. And they succeeded in defeating this ballot initiative in Texas. ExxonMobil. And some other petroleum industry. Companies spend about $100,000 supporting the campaign of Ted Cruz to defeat Beto O'Rourke in the midterm elections in Louisiana. Exxon alone spent $100,000 trying to like, prevent federal, like, like, prevent more regulations on like drilling. Offshores like this is like an example, like kind of where all this money goes. Like it's not just trying to obscure the debate over climate change by making it look like there is a debate. It's like, very targeted in stopping. Specific ballot initiatives like there's this and I don't think there's much understanding of like what is actually going on at the local level to increase the ******* these companies are able to go after. But it's extensive like in it they they get a lot of bang for their buck. $100,000 is not a lot of money in the context of like national politics, but it's enough that Exxon can stop a little law in Louisiana aimed at reducing the amount of places they can drill. It's not a lot, you know, but it it's enough to help Senator Ted Cruz defeat Beto O'Rourke and. Continue to give them like an open hand on whatever the **** they want to do in Texas. So the question we're left with at the end of this is what do we do about these people? How do we actually fight back? Are we doomed to just lob a series of mostly hopeless lawsuits at them and the the the, the vain belief that one of them might net a couple of $1,000,000 in fines? Even if they were fined a billion dollars, $10 billion, that wouldn't be enough to punish any of these companies or the people behind them. The only answer I can see is something our current legal system does not make room for, something unprecedented attribution science offers us a chance to actually determine the relative. Samples of guilt for each of these companies and the individuals inside them. What we need is a modern equivalent of the Nuremberg trial for these people, a comprehensive, sweeping attempt to actually do justice by charging the individual human beings responsible for the crimes they've committed and levying criminal penalties against individuals like Rex Tillerson, rather than just finding their companies a pittance of the amount of money they made committing crimes. Now, as with the Nuremberg Trials, this will require a number of things that are not considered legally ideal. Many of the things these people did were not crimes in the law code when they committed them. The same was true of the crimes of men like Julia Stryker, General Alfred Yodel, and Hans Frank. But the world decided that the crimes those been committed were too grave and the cost too dear to risk letting them get off without punishment. And I think you can make the same argument in this situation. So that's my ******* rant. I don't know what I got. I totally agree. Maybe, maybe hanging isn't a bad idea. Sometimes I would go with something more appropriate for these people, like some kind of eco death. You know, put them in a mushroom suit if if I'm honest, like, yeah, I like I get frustrated and. Seek more objectively barbaric? Yeah. Hanging has too much baggage. Culturally, it's too much baggage. Culture, I think. Like digging a hole in the earth and letting these be these people, be consumed by the earth that they destroyed would be nice. I I I actually think if you really wanted to penalize them in the maximum way, you take away all of their money and you make them spend the rest of their lives living in like random towns in America. Working 40 to 60 hour a week jobs, I definitely think that the solution to everything is to undercover boss all the workplaces. And just have, like, every time there's a hot day, you know, as Rex Tillerson goes into his shift at the Waffle House, his, his, his fellow coworkers are like, thanks ************. Like, or whenever there's a hurricane hits and it damages people's houses, they're like, yeah, thanks for that ******* Rex. Like, and he has to just deal with that. Everyday goes home smelling a ******* hash Browns and stuff as he works like a normal person and is never violently attacked for his crimes, but lives every day with everyone. Around him, knowing what a ***** ** **** he is and how he contributed to their shared misery, that that, I think. Would be a really fair penalty. Degree. Molly, how you feeling? Feeling? Feeling a little depressed, not gonna lie? Yeah, it's not great. It's not great. Kind of just makes you want to go like eat a cheeseburger and use a plastic single, use plastic bottle and just **** it, man. Or invest in angle grinders. The only grinder solution for grinding angles, yeah. That's very useful information, actually very, very useful. And I mean I do want to know more like leftist prepper facts from. Yeah Robert, but of avoid harbor freight. You know they're more affordable, but they tend to be pretty low quality. Like if you if you just roll into roll in and like some like an off hour into a Home Depot, you can usually find some like old dude kind of crusty looking with a beard who can tell you everything you need to know about angle grinders. Yeah. Especially if you live in Los Angeles. Great town to buy an angle grinder. LA has the best ******* home depots in the world. Love those home depots. I don't. They're open 24 hours. Something like places with really tall shelves. Oh, I love Home Depot. I find it so soothing. I I don't like Costco. I don't like Home Depot. I don't like those. Like, what about target? But their shelves aren't like super duper Duper Duper high. Yeah, but don't you ever feel like to feel like a tiny speck of dust in a Home Depot verse? No, I do like their plant department. Yeah, I like to get lost in the plants. Their plant department is. I take it back. Home Depot. You're right. The the plant zone is plant zone is great. Especially during Christmas tree season. Just wander around those. They got the best cheap trees. That's cheap trees in LA, for sure. It's just turned into a Home Depot ad. Yeah, Home Depot company that will sell you the tools you need to rebel against constituted authority. Yeah. Cool stuff. Cool stuff. Well Molly, you want to plug your plug cables? Please everybody listen to Nightcall podcast, also on the iHeartRadio podcast network, and also check out no Olympics at Would love to see the International Olympic Committee roasted on ******** sometime, because truly a cabal of super villains. Years in human history and honestly like part of a ******* up the environment real bad. They are gearing you now. Can you believe that? They're holding events at Fukushima for the 2020 games and they have not finished or radiating the soil, so it's almost like they just plow ahead with their plans, even as climate change makes it harder and harder to hold outdoor sports events because of the temperature going up so much in the summer. Molly, I feel like what you're trying to tell me. Which is fundamentally ridiculous. Is that the city of Los Angeles, a city that bakes in the summer much of the year, that has severe drought problems, that is surrounded regularly by horrific wildfires, and that has the worst traffic of anywhere in the nation? You're telling me this is a bad place to hold the Olympics in the future? Would you believe that a city that can't deal with its own housing crisis and has perpetually failed the most vulnerable people in the city and. Failed to give them proper housing and shelter. Would think they should be doing anything else but working on fixing that by building housing. For that to be relevant, you would have to be able to cite to me evidence from, I don't know, let's say more than eight cities, that the Olympics increases the cost of housing in a city that holds. Wow, and I doubt you can honestly name more than 9 or 10. Maybe 12:15 or 16. At least 30 to 40. How long has the games been going on? That's how long they've been ******* **** up. **** the Olympics. The Olympics. The Nazis invented the torch relay. Nazis like torches, I write. You're saying so much. Nazis, crazy stuff, Molly. Nazis like weird free Masonic fascists, assemblies of bodies all moving in in synchronicity. I mean, nothing you're saying is familiar to me as someone who researches all of this term, like professionally. Please do. I think I know if you've done Lenny Riefenstahl yet either and but please. Oh, we're gonna we have a that's gonna be a fun that the problem is that, like, hate her. It's kind of hard to. Yeah. Yeah. It'll be we'll we'll we'll get to her. She's a bad director. Bad director. And then she was wrongly brought back as like a feminist hero filmmaker. But feminist icon. That Nazi lady. Yeah, the Nazi lady who's not even good. Good at making movies. Strong takes. Strong takes. You know, you're gonna catch some hell on Twitter for that because we have a lot of Lenny Ravenstahl fans. You know what? There's more than you think, because I do say this all the time and people are always like, but the shots in the triumph of the well, and I'm like, yeah, they're ******* ****** and it's a boring movie. I dare you to bring movie anyone who's watched that whole thing ever. But if you look at how the Olympics are shown on television, it's just like triumph of the will. They just uncritically sort of, you know? Praise the idealized human form and I don't talk about all the ****** ** **** they're doing in the cities are they? Hold them. So thanks for letting me do my should be all. Thanks for letting thanks for that spiel. And I I just. I feel like you are unreasonably slandering an event that I don't know. I don't have a joke. I let's let's replace the Olympics with people failing to ski and harming themselves. Did a real amateurs convention? Only the if you wanna have a skiing competition, only. People who have never put on let's replace the Olympics with have never gone skiing. A worker owned ******* games? Exactly. Open mic? Exactly, yeah. Yeah, and I think we should really gear it towards Instagram influencers with the goal of thinning out their numbers. I think they're doing that themselves. I will say that. We have really gone on the warpath today. Well, I want to say, last time I did this podcast, I believe the other Robert Evans was still alive. Hmm. And now you're the only Robert Evans. So congratulations on. Thank you being the sole Robert Evans. I am the last bearer of the name. You could start wearing a cravat and just embodi. Do you? Did I? I am regularly inhaling my body weight and cocaine to honor his memory. Great. Yeah. RIP to the other Robert Evans. And long may you live real, Robert Evans. Now, with all this cocaine I'm doing, I'm going to tell you that much right now. Are you sure it's not a ski jump? Whenever. I will watch ski fails, but I will never go skiing. Everybody has to do a lot of cocaine and then do skiing. Those are the the future games, the the new Olympics rules, and we only the only place it's legal to hold the new Olympics. We might just be describing the Nazi Olympics again, just doing a lot of speed and skiing. Yeah, but the the goal is to watch people agree to do something dangerous and then get hurt. And that's fine. That's noble. That's going to be when we get to The Hunger Games, which will be any moment. No, probably. Yeah, well, yeah. On that note, on that note, I'm Robert Evans. He wants to say I'm Molly Lambert. He wants to say you go follow him on Twitter at irate. OK, you can follow us at ******* spot on the two Instagram and we have a two public store and he's doing a live show with Billy Wayne Davis in LA on March 8th at Dynasty typewriter. I do it all, Robert. I don't know. I have forgotten my name in the face of my father. Great. The episode is over. Great. 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