Beginning in May of this year, Smith began what can only be described as a campaign of intimidation against the U.C.S. and other environmental organizations involved in researching Exxon’s actions. He demanded that the president of the U.C.S. turn over his organization’s internal e-mail correspondence about the research, as well as correspondence with the attorneys general. The U.C.S. rejected his requests multiple times until, on July 13th, Smith issued a subpoena demanding the documents in question. (Smith, it’s worth pointing out, made no claims about wrongdoing by the U.C.S. or any other organization involved in these investigations.)
Smith’s subpoenas are a direct attack on the rights of scientists and others to conduct research independent of government interference.
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