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For four decades, the company Toyota commissioned to investigate allegations of unintended acceleration has played a central role in many of the most heated auto safety debates, almost exclusively working for the auto industry.
The company, Exponent, is part of a thriving industry of firms that do research and scientific and engineering analysis for hire and provide expert testimony and reports for companies facing product disputes, government regulation and lawsuits. Critics claim Exponent will go to any length to get test results favoring its clients…
“In virtually every case that I have been in, Exponent was on the other side as an expert,” says Savannah, Ga., plaintiff attorney Jim Carter. “It doesn’t matter whether it’s a seat back failure or a roof failure or a steering failure. They will come up with an expert to testify in their favor if they are asked by a car company.”
More from Ken Silverstein:
Perspective — October 23, 2013, 8:00 am
How pro-oil Louisiana politicians have shaped American environmental policy
Postcard — October 16, 2013, 8:00 am
A trip to one of the properties at issue in Louisiana’s oil-pollution lawsuits
Acreage of a Christian nudist colony under development in Florida:
Florida’s wildlife officials decided to remove the manatee, which has a mild taste that readily adapts to recipes for beef, from the state’s endangered-species list.
A 64-year-old mother and her 44-year-old son were arrested for running a gang that stole more than $100,000 worth of toothbrushes from Publix, Walmart, Walgreens, and CVS stores in Florida.
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“He could be one of a million beach-bound, black-socked Florida retirees, not the man who, by some odd happenstance of life, possesses the brain of Albert Einstein — literally cut it out of the dead scientist's head.”