While the rest of the U.S. economy has been in a frightening free fall, there's one particular company that is obviously enjoying its corporate greed.

That company?

Exxon Mobil Corporation, based in Irving, Texas.

The world's largest publicly traded oil company reported record profits this week for the third quarter of 2008. The profit? A mere $15 billion. Actually, the profit was only $14.83 billion, but rounding up seems acceptable when you're only talking .17 of a billion ($170 million).

The record broke the previous mark of $11.68 billion profit - set by Exxon Mobil in the second quarter of 2008. While Texans are prone to exaggeration, profits are definitely bigger in the Lone Star State.

(For the record, in 2007, Exxon reported income taxes of $30 billion on revenue of $390 billion and net income of $40.6 billion. For the years 2003-2007, Exxon's average taxes were about $13 billion a year, according to the company.)

It credits its back-to-back record profits on a "discplined business approach."

For the working families of America struggling with stagnant wages, higher prices at every turn (including the excessively high prices at the gas pump) and the growing threat of layoffs, it's hard to cheer the success of the American oil giant.

It also makes you believe an oil giant like Exxon Mobil could certainly afford to take an extra hit in the pocketbook - to share the burden (with other taxpayers) of helping our nation out of its financial crisis.

Then again, the phrase windfall profits tax also comes to mind.

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