Monday, March 19, 2012

Scalia could not get his facts straight about Bush v Gore in his appearance at Weslayan University.

...It was a long time ago, people forget…It was a 7-2 decision. It wasn’t even close,” he said.... (click title to entry - thank you)

Decision: 5 votes for Bush, 4 vote(s) against

There is a auditory record of the arguments at the link above.

Barack Obama targets offshore tax havens

5/5/09 4:23 AM EDT 

With a stiff crackdown on offshore tax dodgers announced Monday, President Barack Obama is trying to stay one step ahead of populist outrage over Wall Street excesses, even as he scrounges for money to fund his extremely ambitious — and expensive — domestic agenda.
Just before the announcement, White House aides distributed statistics that were tailor-made to provoke outrage among Americans hardest hit by the economic downturn.
The White House pointed to a single building in the Cayman Islands that is the official address for more than 18,000 offshore corporations — few of which even have a physical presence on the islands.
The five-story building in the capital city of George Town is known as Ugland House, and it has been the target of withering scorn from American politicians for several years; Obama frequently mentioned it on the 2008 campaign trail....

There is probably why Romney is not an economic lightweight, certainly his offshore successes prove it.

Romney offshore accounts contain up to $32 million (click title to entry - thank you)

Updated 1/20/2012 4:46 PM 

WASHINGTON (AP) – Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney owns investments worth between $7 million and $32 million in offshore-based holdings, which are often used legitimately by private equity firms to attract foreign investors. Such offshore accounts also can enable wealthy investors to defer paying U.S. taxes on some assets, according to tax experts....

The Cayman Islands is not a USA Territory, so it isn't as though Romney's offshoring was to create jobs for Americans.

Romney wins in American Samoa (click here)

March 14, 2012|The Associated Press
Mitt Romney won the Republican caucus in American Samoa, picking up all nine delegates.
About 70 Republicans in the U.S. territory located 2,300 miles south of Hawaii met in caucus Tuesday. The six delegates selected at the meeting and three superdelegates to the Republican National Convention all said they would support Romney.
Falemao M. Pili, vice chairman of the local GOP and a delegate, says he believes Romney can fix the U.S. economy that extends to American Samoa. He says Romney can “turn this country around.’’

Brazil detains oil executives over legal evasions of responsibility, like lying. Why does this sound familiar, only Tony Hayward never risked detention.

Brazil Official: Chevron Offshore Oil Leak Is 'Much Bigger' Than The Company Says (click here)

November 18, 2011
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — An oil spill off Brazil's coast could be "much bigger" than earlier estimated, the Rio de Janeiro state environment minister said Friday, and Federal Police said that oil company Chevron drilled deeper than allowed.
Minister Carlos Minc didn't say how much oil has leaked from the site of a well owned by Chevron. The leak began Nov. 8 and some Brazilian officials say has not yet been contained.
The exact cause of the leak is not yet known, but a spokesman for Brazil's Federal Police, which has opened an investigation into the spill, said that Chevron "drilled about 500 meters (1,640 feet) farther than they were licensed to do."

I suppose drilling too deep was just one of those "Oops" moments.

Brazil Bars Chevron Executives From Leaving Over Spill (click title to entry - thank you)

Oil Spill Occurred In Deep Water Off Rio de Janeiro Coast In November

By Marilia Brocchetto and Maria P. White
Posted: 2:40 am CDT March 18, 2012
Updated: 5:15 am CDT March 18, 2012
A federal court in Brazil has issued an order barring 17 executives from U.S. oil giant Chevron and Transocean Ltd. from leaving the country while it mulls criminal charges against them for an oil spill last year.

Among the 17 who were ordered Saturday by a federal judge in Rio de Janeiro to give up their passports is an American: George Buck, the chief operating officer of Chevron's Brazil division.

Kurt Glaubitz, a Chevron spokeman, said the company has not received a formal notification of the order.

"Any legal decision will be abided by the company and its employees," he said. "We will defend the company and its employees."

The oil spill occurred in deep water off the coast of Rio de Janeiro in November.

The next month, Brazilian federal prosecutors filed a suit against Chevron and oil rig operator Transocean for 20 billion reais, about $11 billion....

Now, it is Brazil that has overestimated its capacity.  The only thing Brazil has done wrong is offer an opportunity for those completely competent oil executives to show off their high technology for safely drilling to the center of the Earth.

One has to know everything the petroleum industry does is magnificently safe through all their advanced technologies.

...Yet industry insiders believe California-based Chevron (click here) will win back its rights, barring the discovery of any criminal or gross negligence in its Frade field where the accident occurred. The fine is tiny compared to the company's $187 billion market value and it said on Friday it is interested in bidding on new concessions in Brazil. 

The more lasting legacy of the spill may be an awareness that Brazil has overestimated its capacity to exploit deep, technically challenging "subsalt" reserves and become the world's third- or fourth-biggest oil producer by 2020.

Chevron has admitted responsibility for the spill but experts say the mistake it made -- a misjudgment of reservoir pressure and rock strength hundreds of meters beneath the ocean floor -- partly reflects the huge difficulties of operating in such extreme conditions.

"This spill shows that there is much that we still don't know," said Segen Estefan, a professor of undersea engineering at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro.

"We have to recognize that we really don't fully understand the risks and need to do much more to not only make drilling safer but find ways to clean up spills. As you go deeper everything gets more difficult."

The Chevron accident follows a series of recent accidents on platforms owned by state-controlled oil firm Petrobras that have raised questions about Brazil's ability to cope with safety and environmental risks and cooled euphoria over the vast reserves that lie up to 7 km (4.4 miles) below the ocean surface....

The reason I find it admirable Brazil is willing to detain these executives is because the petroleum industry believes itself immune from such hurdles.  The USA has lost the capacity to sincerely make an impression on this industry as to how it cannot simply ignore laws and regulations.  The petroleum industry has no respect for government and now in Brazil they have finally met a government with resolve to let them know they are not more powerful or sovereign than the people of Brazil.

In the USA, the petroleum industry is viewed as the 'sweetheart' of the energy sector by Republican legislators whom seek to weaken USA laws at every turn to pander to these people.  Billions of $US are still provided in subsidies while alternative energies are neglected.  The corruption surrounding the petroleum industry is so prevalent in the USA that a single billionaire wants to lay a pipeline through the most important agricultural land in the world.  It is about time a nation is taking a stand with these people.  I thank Brazil for their tenacious resolve.

"Morning Papers" - It's Origins (click title to entry - thank you)

The Rooster

"Good Night, Moon"

Waning Crescent

12.1% of Full

26.2 day old moon

Sunday, March 18, 2012