NYT Ignores Source’s Oil Industry Ties

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The New York Times had a page one story today quoting a source downplaying the impacts of the Gulf spill. “The sky is not falling,” Quenton R. Dokken told the paper. They list Dokken as “a marine biologist and the executive director of the Gulf of Mexico Foundation, a conservation group in Corpus Christi, Tex.”

But the Times failed to mention that the source and his innocuous sounding foundation have numerous ties to the oil industry, including those at fault in the Gulf spill. Mother Jones alum Marian Wang, now at ProPublica, has the scoop:

At least half of the 19 members of the group’s board of directors have direct ties to the offshore drilling industry. One of them is currently an executive at Transocean, the company that owns the Deepwater Horizon rig that exploded last month, causing millions of gallons of oil to spill into the Gulf of Mexico.

Seven other board members are currently employed at oil companies, or at companies that provide products and services “primarily” to the offshore oil and gas industry. Those companies include Shell, Conoco Phillips, LLOG Exploration Company, Devon Energy, Anadarko Petroleum Company and Oceaneering International.

Read the whole post at ProPublica.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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