Last night we got word that Niger Innis, spokesperson for
ExxonMobil, Monsanto, the Congress of Racial Equality was going to be on a CBC national radio show called The Current talking about his organization's “Stop the War on the Poor “ campaign.
We were able to get a hold of the producer of the show and provided information on CORE's cozy relationship with oil giant ExxonMobil and genetically-modified seed producer Monsanto.
It is important that when people like Innis appear on such shows that listeners are given the full context. Much like if a doctor who gets money from a pharmaceutical company was to go on the air touting the benefits of a particular drug, Innis and the media should be obliged to disclose potential conflicts of interest.
Here's a partial transcript of the Innis interview on The Current with mention of DeSmogBlog.com and CORE's links to ExxonMobil:
Host: “There is an organization with a website called DeSmogBlog.com who report that your group CORE has been funded in the past by a grant from ExxonMobil. Is there any truth to that?
Innis: “Well let me respond to that in two ways. First of all, CORE has over a million contributors. That is small businesses, that is members, that is mom and pop shops, that is major corporations. I suspect there are members of the Sierra Club and Greenpeace that have funded CORE.”
Host: “But is that, ExxonMobil wants… [cut off]
Innis: Just to finish up Mike, ExxonMobil, yes indeed is one of our funders, as are millions, er, hundreds of thousands of other entities, individuals and corporations. Um, we're a non-profit.”
Host: “On a larger issue, do you believe climate change is a threat to the earth?”
Innis: “I think, we're not engaged in this to debate the issue of climate change. I'm not saying climate change doesn't exist, I'm saying we should not over react to it and what I am saying we should do is balance whatever the environmental responsible and good stewards of the earth with very real economic concerns that poor people have. And that whatever changes we're going to make, that these burdens should not borne out disproportionately by poor people.”