OK, so Time magazine made US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke person of the year, apparently for saving the world economy from total collapse. But wait a minute, wasn't he, after his former boss Alan Greenspan, among those most responsible for creating the conditions for the devastating credit bubble in the first place? Before you can even say Wall Street, we will have bankers running the world (to the ground), again thanks to Bernanke's busy efforts of the past two years. But moving on, let's consider a more respectable pick from Nature, the science weekly. Its choice of physicist Steven Chu, Nobel laureate and the US Secretary of Energy, as Newsmaker of the Year, makes a lot more sense. This makes him the first Chinese-American to enjoy the honour. A frequent visitor to Hong Kong, at least before he took up this cabinet post in January, he has made it his mission to be a public cheerleader for clean-energy research. In his current position, he spearheads the Obama administration's climate change policy. He has also been telling off rightwing US lawmakers who deny the reality of greenhouse effect - it's hard to argue with one of the great scientific minds of our generation. And, the average US legislators have never been known for the quality of their intellect and knowledge. As Nature said, 'Although it would be naive to think that one scientist can move politicians with long-standing opposition to climate legislation, Chu's efforts may help tilt the balance towards the passage of a bill and the eventual ratification of an international climate treaty. 'Those who stand on the side of logic and data should vigorously support his efforts.'