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Bush, Obama and the Oil Spill
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5348

PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 3:19 pm    Post subject: Bush, Obama and the Oil Spill Reply with quote

Those of you not allergic to print media that require fact checking may have read this morning in the McClatchy news service line that the current oil spill scenario was gamed about ten years ago, and that the Bush Administration ordered a speed up (cut environmental protections) of oil drilling. Remember those secret meetings with Dick Cheney and the oil officials? Including Kenny Lay from Enron, by the way. Georgie's good buddy. Anyway, that led to the oil company having a hand in drafting this Executive Order, as well as many other policies that led to a relaxation of standards. To blame this on Obama is some sick combination of partisanship and stupidity. Anyway, here's the text that Bush signed:
Quote:
Presidential Documents
Federal Register / Vol. 66, No. 99 / Tuesday, May 22, 2001 / Presidential Documents 28357
Executive Order 13212 of May 18, 2001
Actions To Expedite Energy-Related Projects
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the
laws of the United States of America, and in order to take additional steps
to expedite the increased supply and availability of energy to our Nation,
it is hereby ordered as follows:
Section 1. Policy. The increased production and transmission of energy
in a safe and environmentally sound manner is essential to the well-being
of the American people. In general, it is the policy of this Administration
that executive departments and agencies (agencies) shall take appropriate
actions, to the extent consistent with applicable law, to expedite projects
that will increase the production, transmission, or conservation of energy.
Sec. 2. Actions to Expedite Energy-Related Projects. For energy-related
projects, agencies shall expedite their review of permits or take other actions
as necessary to accelerate the completion of such projects, while maintaining
safety, public health, and environmental protections. The agencies shall
take such actions to the extent permitted by law and regulation, and where
appropriate.
Sec. 3. Interagency Task Force. There is established an interagency task
force (Task Force) to monitor and assist the agencies in their efforts to
expedite their review of permits or similar actions, as necessary, to accelerate
the completion of energy-related projects, increase energy production and
conservation, and improve transmission of energy. The Task Force also
shall monitor and assist agencies in setting up appropriate mechanisms
to coordinate Federal, State, tribal, and local permitting in geographic areas
where increased permitting activity is expected. The Task Force shall be
composed of representatives from the Departments of State, the Treasury,
Defense, Agriculture, Housing and Urban Development, Justice, Commerce,
Transportation, the Interior, Labor, Education, Health and Human Services,
Energy, Veterans Affairs, the Environmental Protection Agency, Central Intelligence
Agency, General Services Administration, Office of Management and
Budget, Council of Economic Advisers, Domestic Policy Council, National
Economic Council, and such other representatives as may be determined
by the Chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality. The Task Force
shall be chaired by the Chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality
and housed at the Department of Energy for administrative purposes.
Sec. 4. Judicial Review. Nothing in this order shall affect any otherwise
available judicial review of agency action. This order is intended only to
improve the internal management of the Federal Government and does not
create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law
VerDate 11<MAY>2000 12:56 May 21, 2001 Jkt 194001 PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\22MYE1.SGM pfrm04 PsN: 22MYE1
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5348

PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2010 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

With Bobby Jindal begging Obama to restart oil drilling immediately, and Sarah Palin blaming the spill on extreme environmentalists, there is enough horse manure on the ground to know that there must be a pony here somewhere. It is a little hard to find it. I spent a little time trying to see how much money the oil industry had pumped into Sarah and Bobby’s campaigns. Sarah comes off pretty well in that column; matching the reports I’ve heard that there are some things she was pretty good at in Alaska. No easy answer on Bobby—you can get his campaign filings on line, but it seems that there is a $5000 limit on direct contributions. But the real conflict is actually institutional. The direct oil royalties in Alaska and Louisiana make it easy to be an anti-tax populist in those states. Enough funds are generated directly through oil royalties, and indirectly through industry jobs, to lower the burden on other residents of the State—the Seattle Times reported $6 billion in oil revenue for Alaska in fiscal year 2007. And once you’re on that gravy train, you want to keep those funds coming in. Louisiana’s take is much more modest, about $300 million, because most of the oil revenue comes from Federal lands offshore where the Federal government gets about $5.7 billion. For Louisiana, direct oil royalties are only about 1% of their $29 billion budget. For Alaska, oil revenues are 60% of the $10 billion budget.

We will clearly rely on offshore oil and imported oil for the foreseeable future. These numbers and the blow out should generate a meaningful debate over whether or not the relatively low revenues on Federal oil and gas are needed to convince oil companies to take these substantial risks, or whether they are the result of insider influence by the oil companies and their lobbyists. I can even see a legitimate Tea party perspective that such big numbers are inherently corrupting. Duh—that’s why Cheney invited them into his office to write Federal policy.

Quote:
The fact is, the oil and gas industry throws around a lot of money in Washington. The industry spent $174 million lobbying Congress in 2009, ranking it behind only the pharmaceutical/health products industry and business associations. By contrast, the Center for Responsive Politics notes that the entire environmental movement spent $22 million on lobbying in 2009.

In 2009, BP alone spent $16 million to influence legislation; and another $3.5 million in the first quarter of 2010. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, its agenda included lobbying actively on the American Clean Energy Leadership Act of 2009, which allows increased oil and gas leasing in the Gulf of Mexico; as well as on the Oil Spill Prevention Act of 2009 and the Clean Water Restoration Act.

More of BP's money has been heading to the campaigns of Republicans than Democrats. And as an industry, about three quarters of the oil and gas money has gone to Republicans since 1990, the Center on Responsive Politics noted. That disparity held true in the 2008 presidential campaign, as McCain and his running-mate Palin accepted $2.4 million in contributions from the oil industry, more than double the nearly $900,000 that went to Obama.
And to be fair, we also took a look at Palin's contributions from 2006 when she ran, successfully, for governor of Alaska. According to data from National Institute on Money in State Politics, Palin received $4,500 from BP employees that year; and about $15,500 from the gas and oil industry as a whole. That was significantly less than her Democratic opponent, Tony Knowles, who raked in about $25,500 from the oil and gas industry.

"She (Palin) didn't raise a lot of money from oil and gas," said Edwin Bender, executive director of the institute.
(source: Robert Farley, St. Petersburg Times.)
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stevenbard



Joined: 11 Nov 1993
Posts: 4217

PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Obama the community organizing Marxist has no clue what he's doing. Congress has been controlled by liberals since 1966. They could have made the neccesary changes then if they had the will.

For a year and a half, that half witted Obama could have at least put a few more inspectors in the Gulf!

He is the Emperor with no clothes. He is Marie Antoinete. He is Don Quixote. He is Imelda Marcos. He is Hitler with an afro. His rein will end like all of theirs.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14311

PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Far worse, he is Jimmy Carter on steroids; smart and intellectual, but completely devoid of common sense, reality, and leadership.
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stevenbard



Joined: 11 Nov 1993
Posts: 4217

PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mac, By far Obama has received more money from BP than any other candidate in history....EXPLAIN THIS. $1,000,000 in his last campaign.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5348

PostPosted: Fri Jun 11, 2010 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stevenbard--you got one right! That's one so far! Indeed, Obama got more campaign contributions from BP than McCain or Sarah--but less overall from oil. The critique's from the left are that he didn't do anything about MMS, and was too quick to approve exploration plans. Those are actually legitimate criticisms--I think he was too cautious in the face of all you right wingers screaming drill baby drill.

That said, it was Cheney and Bush, and before them Bush I and Reagan, that made the MMS a candy store for the oil companies. Certainly the oil companies bought deeply into Democrats, including Mary Landrieu, who have argued for less regulation. But to blame this on Obama, after Cheney wrote the rules, is going right down the rabbit hole with Alice. Dude, check your medication--or maybe even the facts.
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swchandler



Joined: 08 Nov 1993
Posts: 5882

PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2010 2:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Obama the community organizing Marxist has no clue what he's doing. Congress has been controlled by liberals since 1966. They could have made the neccesary changes then if they had the will.

For a year and a half, that half witted Obama could have at least put a few more inspectors in the Gulf!

He is the Emperor with no clothes. He is Marie Antoinete. He is Don Quixote. He is Imelda Marcos. He is Hitler with an afro. His rein will end like all of theirs."

Bard, have you been sniffing glue?
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5348

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2010 4:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Follow the money. Remember that the land being leased for drilling in the Gulf is public land--yours and mine. What do we get? $3.1 billion last year--that's for all leases, not just the gulf. It works out to about $7.60 BBL. Mrgybe wonders why I am so hostile to the oil companies. I remember when they got those leases, under Reagan and Bush I. The clear intent of the top rethugs was to get the leases into the hands of the oil companies quickly--saturating the market and depressing the price of oil leases. We sold our heritage, as the saying goes, for a mess of pottage. See the background here (I'm never afraid to either cite my sources, or read better information.) http://emptywheel.firedoglake.com/2010/05/24/how-much-does-bp-pay-us-for-privilege-of-soiling-our-shores/
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NickB



Joined: 30 Jun 2009
Posts: 498
Location: Alameda, CA

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2010 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for this great link.

Mac, on a similar unpleasant subject, do you know if anything is being done locally to protect our Bay?

The re-fueling accident a few months back was such an eye opener. "Only" 400-800 gallons spilled during a refueling gone bad, and our beach here in Alameda was so sad. Hundreds of oiled birds, dozens dead. Beach closed, hazmat suits and clean-up for weeks, tarballs for months...

The immediate response to the accident was a bit chaotic. Did this trigger any procedural change? What happens the day two of these full tankers collide in the North Bay?
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5348

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2010 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nick--most of the regulation of oil activity occurs Federally through the Coast Guard and through the State Department of Fish and Game (Specifically in the Office of Spill Prevention and Response--OSPR) . They set up a bunch of specific oil spill response activities in the wake of the Exxon Valdez spill.

I think you are referring to the Dubai Star spill last October, where the operators had not set any boom before the spill. This spill has stimulated talk about requiring booming around ships--currently they can either pre-boom or deploy within 30 minutes, which wasn't done in the Dubai Star spill. I believe that this would require a change in regulations, and someone to help organize environmental efforts to push for that change. (Of course right wing folks like Bard want to end regulation so they can drink oil at their local sites.)

I would love to have someone volunteer to pursue this issue within the auspices of San Francisco Boardsailing Association. I'd like to find someone within the Surfrider Foundation, and get some pressure on clean water issues. If you are interested, let me know.
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