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Questionable Victory for Refinery Construction

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posted on Oct, 7 2005 @ 07:24 PM
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With Democrats like Nancy Pelosi screaming foul, the House this afternoon narrowly passed legislation opponents deemed far too favorable to oil refinery companies. Her complaints alleged the conduct of the vote gave the measure an unfair advantage in its passage.
 



today.reuters.com
By Chris Baltimore

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - In a cliffhanger vote held open by Republican leaders until they won, the U.S. House of Representatives passed by two votes on Friday a bill giving U.S. oil refineries incentives to expand.

The legislation, written by Republican Joe Barton of Texas, was barely approved, 212-210, even after Barton dropped a White House-backed provision that would have gutted clean air rules for refineries to expand existing plants.




Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


Still a mixed message coming from Washington on the recovery and rebuilding following the weakness in refining capacity revealed by the hurricanes, in addition to the damage they caused. Pres. Bush talks in the rose garden about the 'private sector' investing in the rebuilding, then we turn around and see Halliburton get three-quarters of the no-bid contracts handed out for the Gulf recovery, and now we see the House use basically a sham of the voting process to pass this bill handing the oil refinery a virtual blank check. Now it goes to the Senate, and I can't wait to see the next episode of the crooked politician virtual-reality show.



[edit on 7-10-2005 by Icarus Rising]

[edit on 8-10-2005 by RANT]




posted on Oct, 8 2005 @ 08:25 AM
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What truly concerns me about this vote is the way it is indicative of how



Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California called it all "a shameless display of the Republican culture of corruption,"


business gets done in Washington. Watching the smug looks on their faces while they successfully manipulated another vote yesterday made me want to hurl. Any American citizen that thinks that is acceptable needs to re-examine their convictions. The end does not justify the means if you
sell your soul to get there.



It looked as if the bill was going down to defeat, two votes shy of approval. Democrats to no avail called for gaveling the vote closed as GOP leaders lobbied their own members to switch votes and support the bill.

Finally, long after the vote had been scheduled to close, two GOP votes switched, providing the Republican victory. A tie would have killed the bill. "Shame, shame, shame," came a chorus from the Democratic side of the aisle.


Shame on all of them. Fooled us once. Fooled us twice. Titanic, ship of fools, ran into the ice. And sank.



Critics of the legislation argued a cash-rich industry with huge profits over the past year shouldn't need government help to build refineries. They said the bill would allow the oil industry to avoid environmental regulations and would lead to dirtier air.

Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., accused GOP leaders of using "the hardships and devastation of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita ... to pass Republican and industry wish lists" that would do nothing to curtail gasoline prices or help people facing huge heating bills this winter.

Pelosi called the bill a rehash of "all the special favors to the industry that were too extreme" for Congress last summer when it passed energy legislation.


There you have it. A titanic miscarriage of justice in the name of providing for the people, all wrapped up in a tidy little package it just happened to take 40 extra minutes to 'hammer' through. That is capitalism in action at our nation's capitol. Business as usual. Capitalize on disaster and suffering to further the agenda of special interests and funnel more wealth to the wealthy.



President Bush welcomed the vote. "I commend the House for passing legislation that would increase our refining capacity and help address the cost of gasoline, diesel fuels, and jet fuels," he said in a statement.


Again, how can the average American citizen support this abuse of power, this oligarchy? Are we all blind and numb and past caring? Have we all sold out to this corrupt system the same way our elected officials appear to?

Don't you see where this is leading? Pretty soon, there will be the super rich..... and everybody else. Prices are rising too fast for income to keep up, and the public is leveraged just like the government on credit and debt and deficit spending. Except for the new tougher personal bk laws, of course. They don't apply to the government.

If we keep this up, there will be a major collapse, and we, the not rich, will all become little more than serfs owing our existence to those that hold our tabs. Property ownership will be consolidated as mass foreclosures strip the masses of their homes, and a fuedal society could emerge. The prospects are scary, and all too real. Greenspan is leaving the Federal Reserve, and guess who appoints his successor? How many adjustable rate mortgages out there can sustain a significant increase in rates? Gas and heating prices will surely skyrocket this winter as Bush's 'bubble' moves through the system.

We need to wake up and straighten this out before its too late. I feel like I'm standing on the bow of the Titanic screaming "ICEBERG!" seconds before impact.

Source



posted on Nov, 6 2005 @ 11:50 AM
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I don't understand, what was done wrong, procedurely? And why is this corrupt? The US needs more refineries, heck the US needed them before the recent bout of hurricanes destroyed some of the refineries that the US did have. Why is it crooked?



posted on Nov, 6 2005 @ 01:19 PM
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I feel like I'm standing on the bow of the Titanic screaming "ICEBERG!" seconds before impact.


and nobody wants to hear about it, or worse, its just fine with them if we plow head-on into that gigantic iceberg at break-neck speed.

I consider the movie 'Titanic' a modern allegory for where Western society is headed. We are so absorbed in our own hubris that impending doom merits barely a glance. I'm sure the Romans were partying it up and stroking their egos bigtime as the Visigoths descended to sack Rome back into the Stone Age, too.



The US needs more refineries, heck the US needed them before the recent bout of hurricanes destroyed some of the refineries that the US did have.


And Exxon-Mobil had a record $10 Billion Profit Last Quarter, with all big oil companies following suit, so why can't they build their own refineries? You know, re-invest profits to build infrastructure to make even bigger profits. Why do they need incentives and hand-outs to get the job done, not to mention relaxed environmental rules that will further pollute our skies, water and soil?

And why can't big oil pay their rightful taxes on these windfall profits, made at the expense of the average citizen btw, to help fund the relief and re-building efforts? Why don't GHW and Clinton go around to the boardrooms of America and give their pitch where it really belongs, rather than coming into the livingrooms of the average citizens of America where an inordinate burden has already been assessed and more is constantly demanded?

That's what's corrupt about it.



posted on Nov, 14 2005 @ 11:47 AM
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Originally posted by Icarus Rising, so why can't they build their own refineries? You know, re-invest profits to build infrastructure to make even bigger profits

Thats what they're doing. They've re-invested the vast majority of the profits from this year back into the market. But if we want lower gas prices, then what are we going to do about it? They're under no obligation to reduce prices or not rake in profits. If the people want lower gas prices, then they are going to have to do something to get the price lower, such as having more refineries permited in the country. Just like if the people want less dependance upon gas, then the people need to start permiting more nuclear plants to be built.

I really don't see how gaining profit and the movement of capital is corrupt.



posted on Nov, 14 2005 @ 02:33 PM
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Again, the circumstances, and the methods, and the exorbitant nature of the profits seem to be lost on you. Or maybe you are impressed by it, and approve of, even admire, it.

Are you trying to claim our current government represents the people now? That's a myth propagated to facilitate corporate profits and political payoffs.

There is, however, a groundswell of growing awareness itself propagating through caring people across this country that is going to sweep the current batch of thieves out of office in '06 and '08, and try to replace them with true representatives of like views who will bring responsibility and accountability to the people back to our government and put the power back where it belongs - in the hands of those people you are talking about but not really representing with your views. Not in the hands of corrupt politicians, fascist military warmongers, bloated corporate billionaires, or slimy sellout lobbyists.



posted on Nov, 14 2005 @ 04:58 PM
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We can not forget that Oil companies pay the most money to candidates campaign up to 75 percent for the Republicans alone, also they are the most expensive lobbyist in Washington.

So far the present administration has given them the best deal away from the refineries build up.

The best energy bill at the expenses of tax payer money while the CEOs reap record braking.

More refineries means more control to the prices of oil and is not going to be to benefit any of us the consumer, profits first consumer last.

Also occurs they will used some of the profits to build refineries they already have incentives pay by tax payer from the energy bill.

And lets not forget the profits during the winter when the heating oil goes up to 50 percent.

If they care so much about the American consumer they will be using the some of the profits to help the Americans that will fall in need during this winter because the prices on heating oil.

But occurs that is not in their mind, profits, prices and more control.

That is corruption without government intervention and the government is just blind when it comes to them over the people that elected them the tax payer.



posted on Nov, 15 2005 @ 11:40 AM
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Originally posted by Icarus Rising
Again, the circumstances, and the methods, and the exorbitant nature of the profits seem to be lost on you. Or maybe you are impressed by it, and approve of, even admire, it.

None of that matters. Its perfectly legal to charge high rates for a product.


There is, however, a groundswell of growing awareness itself propagating through caring people across this country that is going to sweep the current batch of thieves out of office in '06 and '08,

This has nothing to do with building refineries.

Not in the hands of corrupt politicians, fascist military warmongers, bloated corporate billionaires, or slimy sellout lobbyists.

Again, what is corrupt here? The oil companies made record profits. The american people want lower gas prices. Therefore, the american people are going to need to help build more refineries, to lower the price of gas. Its not in the interests of the oil companies to do it, and therefore its not going to get done. If the people want more refineries, then why is this instance, of having more refineries, so corrupt?

If they care so much about the American consumer

But they don't, and they shouldn't. They're not humanitarians, they're merchants. They aren't under any requirement to lower gas prices to make life 'easier' on the public, its a business, not a dole.

But occurs that is not in their mind, profits, prices and more control.
That is corruption without government intervention

How is it corrupt? Its capitalism and the open market. Its not corrupt that companies make money. Its not corrupt that some companies make ludicrous amounts of money. Profit isn't corruption. Where is the corruption in the building of this refinery?


I mean, I understand that these guys are literally rolling in it

Thats 'unfair' in a certain sense, and yeah, it'd sure be nice those greedy sonsofbitches would lower the price, take a cut in profits, and help the people and the country out. But its not corrupt that they're greedy selfish bastards.

[edit on 15-11-2005 by Nygdan]



posted on Nov, 15 2005 @ 01:01 PM
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Originally posted by Nygdan
Thats 'unfair' in a certain sense, and yeah, it'd sure be nice those greedy sonsofbitches would lower the price, take a cut in profits, and help the people and the country out. But its not corrupt that they're greedy selfish bastards.

[edit on 15-11-2005 by Nygdan]


You are right Nygdan people complain but nothing is done about it, and yes you are right also, many feel that we are a Capitalistic society and people has the right to make money.

But the meaning of Capitalism is not the same as Monopolizing and that is what is going on with the oil industry they control everything is nothing else to competition and that is part also of capitalism.

When corporations get too big and become monopolis they get into our governments and become the government then that is call corruption because they are the only ones benefiting not the consumer with the help of the government.




[edit on 15-11-2005 by marg6043]



posted on Nov, 15 2005 @ 01:40 PM
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I don't see how their profits are unfair. They get the rewards for the sizeable risks they take:

-spending billions (500 million in AZ if EPA gives them a permit for the first NEW refinery in USA since 1976!) on a refinery that Congress or EPA may force them to close with no advance warning.

-nation-states "nationalizing" their assests, again without warning, and without reimburising them.

-facing the flak of people like the originator of this thread, who find it convenient to blame a corporation for all that is wrong with their lives.

-tornadoes, hurricanes, terrorism

-a new type of energy, or merely a major oil discovery, that drives prices down until they LOSE MONEY on their investments (it happened for about a decade, the 1980's.)

-prejudice from an american public that wants lots of cheap oil, but wants to blame the consequence on corporate america.

So, are you saying that they should be in business to LOSE MONEY? No one wants to be in that line of work. That's why communism was less than popular in Eastern Europe.

Or do you want to set the precedent, that any time someone makes a lot of money, that Congress should act like a bandit and sieze all their assets? Because I guarantee that Congress will start on the LITTLE people, and not corporations, if they start siezing stuff.

And it's not like they are untouchable.

Every one of the majors is a publicly traded company, and you don't even need to be a US citizen to buy shares. And you can buy stocks directly, from the company itself, without going through a broker!

www.stock1.com...

www.sharebuilder.com...

both of these websites will help you set this up.

Additionally, as a shareholder, you get to VOTE on how these companies are run!!!!!

As a footnote, you scream about billions in profit. I looked at their stock, and they made less than 2 dollars a share this last year in profit.

Those billions are spread among millions of investors globally. Probably some of their dividend is going into your pension fund.

Again, if you want to get out of poverty, and change corpporate culture, the way to do it is to buy the companies themselves.



[edit on 15-11-2005 by dr_strangecraft]



posted on Nov, 15 2005 @ 02:27 PM
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Originally posted by marg6043


But the meaning of Capitalism is not the same as Monopolizing and that is what is going on with the oil industry they control everything is nothing else to competition and that is part also of capitalism.

[edit on 15-11-2005 by marg6043]


Monopoly? You DO know what that means, right? It means that one company owns it all.

DO you mean Texaco? Or Shell? Or Exxon? or BP?

Or do you mean the thousands of oil-producers in the US that sell crude to the majors, the majority of whom own less than 5 wells, and produce less than 100 barrels a day?

See, you don't have a monopoly if you have multiple producers, multiple processors, and multiple vendors.

Crude is traded in a public auction every business day in New York City. It's called NYMEX.

And for a couple of hundred bucks, you can open an account with a commodities broker, and start buying and selling the rights to oil just like Exxon or Texaco do. Tens of thousands of people do this everyday, and you don't even have to be a US citizen to participate. you don't even need capital, in the futures market. It's called speculating. And anyone can do it.

I do.

Now, if you want to talk about a "controlled market," then let's talk refining.

Because that is totally controlled by the US govt. especially EPA. That's why there hasn't been a new refinery built in the US in a quarter century:

Because the government won't allow it.

So who is really the enemy of cheap gas here?



posted on Nov, 16 2005 @ 11:48 AM
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Nygdan
Thats 'unfair' in a certain sense, and yeah, it'd sure be nice those greedy sonsofbitches would lower the price, take a cut in profits, and help the people and the country out. But its not corrupt that they're greedy selfish bastards.


This is exactly my point, that these corporations need to factor in social responsibility, or they will kill the proverbial "goose that lays the golden egg", in that the source of all those profits will eventually go elsewhere, or turn on them at the first opportunity. I'm trying to find out where the line is between corporate profits and the public good, and it seems skewed to the CP side right now to me.

The government's job, imo, is to put the appropriate pressure on big oil to act in the best interests of their customers as well as their shareholders. This is being stymied by the big oil lobby, leaving us at their mercy. We aren't developiong alternative resources fast enough, we aren't finding ways to stretch the supply, we aren't doing any of the things that would help the consumer.


dr_strangecraft
Again, if you want to get out of poverty, and change corpporate culture, the way to do it is to buy the companies themselves.


Why would I want to become part of the problem? I don't live in poverty, I'm a subsistence level materialist looking in from the outside at a culture gone made over things. It is an unsustainable undertaking that will eventually collapse of its own bloated weight.


dr_strangecraft
refining.... is totally controlled by the US govt. especially EPA. That's why there hasn't been a new refinery built in the US in a quarter century:

Because the government won't allow it.

So who is really the enemy of cheap gas here?


Well, now, with the big oil and other lobbies virtually controlling the government, I'd say they are just getting what they want for their money.

Farting around on the internet playing commodities futures trader may stroke your ego and make you feel like a big player, but it really is just the distraction from reality they need you to take to go about their dirty business unmolested.



posted on Nov, 16 2005 @ 02:39 PM
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someone baiting me



[me responding to bait]

[me baiting someone else]







[edit on 16-11-2005 by dr_strangecraft]



posted on Nov, 16 2005 @ 02:54 PM
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Originally posted by Icarus Rising
This is exactly my point, that these corporations need to factor in social responsibility, or they will kill the proverbial "goose that lays the golden egg", in that the source of all those profits will eventually go elsewhere, or turn on them at the first opportunity.


All the better then no? And if its really in their profit interests to satiate the public in this way, then they will, no? Afterall, they want more money.


I'm trying to find out where the line is between corporate profits and the public good, and it seems skewed to the CP side right now to me.

Corporate Profits in a capitalist society with a free markety lead to the public good, and in and of itself are, if not neutral with respect to ethics, than are themselves a public good. The invisible hand of the market and all.


The government's job, imo, is to put the appropriate pressure on big oil to act in the best interests of their customers as well as their shareholders.

Why? Is not the government's job to rather, do nothing to the market and let it operate of its own accord? Only interfering when laws have been broken?


We aren't developiong alternative resources fast enough,

And this is precisely because there isn't a profit motive in these alternative energy resources. Bio-desiel, for example, is 'better' for the environment and the 'public good' in so far as it loosens the 'grip' of the oil industry....but its terribly expensive and can only compete with gasoline at the pump because the government gives it thousands of dollars, dollars collected from the public too. Once alternative fuels are on actual parity with gasoline and oil, then there'll be a change, and then instead of 'big oil', well have 'big biodisel' or 'big solar' or even, dare i say, 'big wind'



we aren't finding ways to stretch the supply, we aren't doing any of the things that would help the consumer.
Why should 'we' help the consumer, and if we want to help the consumer, why not loosen the restrictions on building new refineries? That'll bring the cost of gas at the pump down far sooner and put more money in the public's pocket than backing 'alternative' energy. I mean, the problem is, oil is a damned good fuel, its so cheap, its so abundant, its so easy to get.


Well, now, with the big oil and other lobbies virtually controlling the government, I'd say they are just getting what they want for their money.

But you're missing the point. You can't get cheaper gas by not building more refineries. Building more refineries lowers the price of gas.


Farting around on the internet playing commodities futures trader may stroke your ego and make you feel like a big player

No baiting in the fora.


, but it really is just the distraction from reality they need you to take to go about their dirty business unmolested.

What is so dirty about their business? No one is required to use gasoline and oil. Everyone chooses to use it, because its good. Of course they're going to sell it at the highest prices that they can, they're motivated by profit. Any company is going to have to be motivated by profit, even its its an alternative energy company. They're corporations, not soup kitchens.



posted on Nov, 16 2005 @ 05:25 PM
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The politics of oil

Oil industries one of the riches in the world influences governments policies but not for the benefit of the consumer that supports them but for their own benefit.

Taking in consideration that most of the members of congress used corporate lobbyists to head their fund raising committees its enough to tell how well corporations are in our government.

The problems is that is not only lobbyists of the finest in the US but other corporate power around the world are catching up to the sell out that our country politicians are and they are buying the best seat in our congress.

So how long is going to take for our own elected leaders to be working for everybody else but the American public that elected them.

China is also one of the new economy power hungry that are buying the best of the best in Washington to have their goals meet, when it comes to getting into the oil business.

After expending $18.5 billion on lobbying and trying to acquire of Unlocal US government favor one of his favorites . . . Chevron. I have not problem with them losing against one of our own but is still smell and stinks like monopoly.

Yes, capitalism turn into monopoly does wonders for the people of a nation and for competition, the American dream but only one sided and controlled.

www.publicintegrity.org...



posted on Nov, 16 2005 @ 07:07 PM
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As a footnote, you scream about billions in profit. I looked at their stock, and they made less than 2 dollars a share this last year in profit.

Those billions are spread among millions of investors globally. Probably some of their dividend is going into your pension fund.


I call this baiting. What's the difference? Maybe I'm just more sensitive than you whiners. Or maybe you are so used to stacking the deck in your favor and holding eachother's hands while you spew your diatribe that you can't handle someone who doesn't swallow it hook, line, and sinker for you, and isn't afraid to challenge your capitalist belief structure in no uncertain terms.


Maybe 'spew your diatribe' is too harsh a description. You are entitled to your opinions, of course.

Yours are sharp too, Nygdan, not that you need me to tell you that. I do believe that government should legislate the public good against the profit driven corporate good at times. We need laws that protect consumers from the kind of profiteering I've seen big oil engaging in lately.

Hey, no offense strangecraft, just words on a page. Get over it!



posted on Nov, 16 2005 @ 10:12 PM
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Originally posted by Icarus Rising

. . . to challenge your capitalist belief structure . . .

. . . I do believe that government should legislate the public good against the profit driven corporate good . .



At least you're opening up and telling us where you come from.

If only you'd be honest enough to say that the real reason you don't like the oil companies is because they represent free enterprise.



posted on Nov, 16 2005 @ 10:20 PM
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I have no problem with free enterprise that has just a smidgen of social conscience.

What is happening in this situation is profiteering, the nasty, brutal conscienceless extreme of free enterprise that has no place in an enlightened democracy such as ours.

Call me a socialist or a communist. I don't care about your labels, or your stock portfolio. I care about people. Even ones with what I consider mis-guided beliefs.

Peace to you, strangecraft.



posted on Nov, 16 2005 @ 10:21 PM
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So, their profits are evil and wicked.

What level of profits would be acceptable from Big oil.



posted on Nov, 16 2005 @ 10:40 PM
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Hey, its not for me to say, its for them to work out on the Hill.

At a time like this we need all the help we can get, and they have the deep pockets right now. Whatever they sacrifice, they will get back ten-fold, I'm sure.

I'm just the big-mouth on his high-horse going-off about it on the internet.

Please excuse my impassioned verbiage.



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