Submitted by Diane Farsetta on
"Over the past year, there have been several instances of political columnists shilling for the Bush administration," notes Paul Thacker, naming Armstrong Williams and Doug Bandow. "But the trend in paid-for-punditry seems to have spread to the world of science journalism as well." Thacker noted Michael Fumento's undisclosed grant from Monsanto, and Fox News columnist Steven Milloy's long-term, close relationships with corporations, including ExxonMobil and Philip Morris. As the Center for Media & Democracy has written, Steven Milloy is one of the "usual suspects" in fronting for corporate interests, writing columns questioning global warming, clear air regulations and the dangers of secondhand smoke. "But, whereas Scripps Howard fired Fumento and apologized to its readers, Fox News continues to look the other way as Milloy accepts corporate handouts," Thacker writes. Fox's Paul Schur told Thacker, "Fox News is unaware of Milloy's connection with Philip Morris." Steve Milloy began his PR front group career with The Advancement of Sound Science Coalition organizing stunts like their science writing award to the New York Times science reporter Gina Kolata.