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Were Cheney and deregulation behind the oil spill?

oil spill reaches south louisiana

Oil reaches Louisiana

I have never been a Dick Cheney fan. So, with that as the backdrop, I must say that an article in the Wall Street Journal (of all places) seems to point the finger at the former vice president. When he was having his secret meetings with Big Oil companies, these companies asked for and got a pass on buying expensive devices that help prevent blows like the one off the coast of Louisiana.

Now, I don’t know if this is true or not. Over the next several days, newspapers and TV reporters will start doing their jobs and investigate the situation. TPM has a nice timeline of this disaster. What is clear is that we were told a story, a fairy tale. For the first two days, we were focused on the lost workers. Where were they? There was nothing about this being one of the largest spills in US history. There was nothing about a spill at all. Then, on day three or four, we heard there might be some leaking oil. Is this all one big cluster?

From WSJ:

The oil well spewing crude into the Gulf of Mexico didn’t have a remote-control shut-off switch used in two other major oil-producing nations as last-resort protection against underwater spills.

The lack of the device, called an acoustic switch, could amplify concerns over the environmental impact of offshore drilling after the explosion and sinking of the Deepwater Horizon rig last week.

The accident has led to one of the largest ever oil spills in U.S. water and the loss of 11 lives. On Wednesday federal investigators said the disaster is now releasing 5,000 barrels of oil a day into the Gulf, up from original estimates of 1,000 barrels a day.

U.S. regulators don’t mandate use of the remote-control device on offshore rigs, and the Deepwater Horizon, hired by oil giant BP PLC, didn’t have one. With the remote control, a crew can attempt to trigger an underwater valve that shuts down the well even if the oil rig itself is damaged or evacuated. (more…)

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By |2010-05-01T00:17:31-04:00May 1st, 2010|Big Oil, Environment|Comments Off on Were Cheney and deregulation behind the oil spill?

Special Edition of the Errington Thompson Show with Brad Friedman of Bradblog

sarah-palinLast Friday, I mentioned in a fairly long post, Sarah Palin’s press conference was bizarre in many aspects. The governor of Alaska, from out of nowhere, decided that she was going to quit. She’s been a long time during her press conference trying to convince someone that quitting was not really quitting. She talked about being a fighter, being a point guard and calling audibles.

Brad Friedman, of Bradblog, has really been all over this story since it first broke last Friday. He has a number of contacts in Alaska. He was the first, to the best of our knowledge, to suggest that there may have been some sort of federal investigation prompting Gov. Palin to resign prior to the announcement of the indictments. It is clear that these allegations are somewhat nebulous but with the sudden announcement comes wild speculation.

Sarah Palin lives on the banks of Lake Lucille. The house is surprisingly beautiful. It is over 3400 ft.┬▓. Yet, neither she nor her husband really make a lot of money. When her husband stated that he built the house by himself, while he works as a fisherman and on an oil rig, if I’m not mistaken, this also raised a lot of eyebrows. It is not that it is impossible for him to build a house. Instead, I’m not sure when he would’ve had time to build a house. ┬áThis just adds more questions especially when we remember that Sarah Palin and Former Senator Ted Stevens were very close.

We must also take into account this huge sports facility that was built in Wasilla, Alaska where Sarah Palin was mayor. The sports facility cost somewhere between $13 and $15 million. This is a paltry sum of money if the facility was built in Atlanta, Chicago or Los Angeles. Instead, this was the most expensive facility built in the town of only 5000 when Sarah Palin was mayor.

Finally, Brad Friedman is known as an expert in the field of US elections. He has blogged extensively on the 2004 election and its multiple problems. I ask him a few questions about the 2008 election and what we need to do to make our elections more about the will of the people.

This is a great conversation with Brad Friedman of Brad blog.

By |2012-05-07T15:06:15-04:00July 9th, 2009|Blogging issues, Elections, Party Politics, Podcasts|Comments Off on Special Edition of the Errington Thompson Show with Brad Friedman of Bradblog
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