Wednesday, August 06, 2008


Those Greedy, Lazy Oil Companies

Sometimes, I get a little self-centered and singularly bemoan my misfortune to have to refer to Martin O’Malley as my governor. I should be more mindful that others have similar misfortunes…such as my neighbors to the south. I was shaken out of my reverie when I read about an interview Va. Governor Kaine had today with Wolf Blitzer on CNN. In particular there was this:

“Kaine also touched on offshore oil drilling Wednesday, saying that while he's "open to exploration" of gas reserves off the country's coast, there needs to be a "new assessment of the costs and benefits … In order to do that you need to look at the consequences."

Huh? Why would anyone want to spend the not-inconsiderable sum required to explore unless they were reasonably certain that they could drill if they so desired? And what’s with the meaning-nothing "new assessment of the costs and benefits … In order to do that you need to look at the consequences”?

I guarantee you that Tim Kaine has NO idea what he means by that – it just has the advantage of sounding thoughtful and responsive, without the danger of being either. The costs and benefits are fairly well known and documented. And the only consequences Tim Kaine cares about are the effects such drilling would have on his political ambitions.

Further, he makes the mistake of parroting noted geologist, Barack Obama:

“Like Obama, Kaine believes that the government needs to first drill in the nearly 70 million acres of land that is already leased to oil companies for drilling.

"They have acreage leased already that could do significant good," Kaine said.”

Really? Where? What bit of acreage is currently leased to an oil company, is a verified cauldron of "bubblin' crude" but yet is shamefully ignored by the wannabe-coastline defiling oil companies? You lease, you explore – only if it’s promising do you produce. What’s distressing is that this moronic argument was already vetted back in June:

“Oil geologists say the Democratic legislation ignores the long-term realities of oil leasing, which takes years of studies to find and drill for reserves.

When federal land or waters are leased to oil companies in parcels of about 1,000 to 3,000 acres, usually for 10 years, there is typically just “a very general sense of the value of the land,” said Larry Nation, a spokesman for the American Association of Petroleum Geologists.

Only some portions of leased land may hold accessible oil, while other portions do not, Nation said, but companies must continue to lease the entire parcel.

“There’s the misconception that every lease has oil,” added David Curtiss, director of the association’s Washington office. “A lease is a line on a map. It has nothing to do with the geology of where oil is.”

Side Note: Here’s another little tidbit from the CNN article:

"Virginia hasn't voted for a Democrat since President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964…"

Of course, Virginia was a mainstay of the Confederacy and my question to you, then, is do you think this 40-year trend of Virginia voting Republican coincided with an increasing or decreasing attitude of racial tolerance? I’m just saying…

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