Obama administration ruled in contempt on drill ban

Anchor-handling tugboats battle the blazing re...

Deepwater Horizon accident- Image via Wikipedia

Excerpt from Bloomberg:

U.S. in Contempt Over Gulf Drill Ban, Judge Rules

By Laurel Brubaker Calkins – Feb 3, 2011 11:53 AM PT

The Obama Administration acted in contempt by continuing its deepwater-drilling moratorium after the policy was struck down, a New Orleans judge ruled.

Interior Department regulators acted with “determined disregard” by lifting and reinstituting a series of policy changes that restricted offshore drilling, following the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history, U.S. District Judge, Martin Feldman of New Orleans ruled yesterday.

“Each step the government took following the court’s imposition of a preliminary injunction showcases its defiance,” Feldman said in the ruling.

“Such dismissive conduct, viewed in tandem with the re-imposition of a second blanket and substantively identical moratorium, and in light of the national importance of this case, provide this court with clear and convincing evidence of the government’s contempt,” Feldman said.

President Barack Obama’s administration first halted offshore exploration in waters deeper than 500 feet in May, after the explosion and sinking of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig off the Louisiana coast led to a subsea blowout of a BP Plc well that spewed more than 4.1 million barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

full story here: U.S. in Contempt Over Gulf Drill Ban, Judge Rules

h/t to WUWT reader paddylol

88 thoughts on “Obama administration ruled in contempt on drill ban

  1. Contempt usually results in immediate jail time for contemplation of the primacy of the rule of law, doesn’t it?
    I have a little list, and they never will be missed!

  2. The administration wants to use lifting the ban as a bargaining chip in negotiating an energy bill with the Republicans. That’s its motive, I think.

  3. There are no consequences.
    Now the house can call hearings and have the secretaries that are in contempt explain why they disregarded the courts.

  4. Here is the height of stupidity…
    Cuba has 18 blocks of drilling rights for sale,
    located in the Florida straights – that’s between Key West and Cuba – effectively 30 miles off the coast of Key West, Florida. – and approx 1000 ft deeper than the busted BP well in the gulf.
    We are not allowed to drill off of our own coast…..
    …obviously everyone else can
    Because of our embargo with Cuba, if any one of those “foreign” wells springs a leak…
    ….we can not even try to fix it

  5. Wait.
    I think someone need to get their heads (and special interest registers) throughly checked/audited.
    Allow me an analogy to see if I correctly understand this:
    If a house burnt down because people ran through the house with flaming torches , and subsequently, the local authority banned the use of flaming torches indoors, which is then lifted because the flaming torch industry lobbied for it, then reimposed because it’s REALLY NOT SAFE to use flaming torches indoors, the authority is “in contempt” ?
    WUWT ?

  6. Our would be king has a lot of trouble with authority and the constitution. First he lost cap n trade in the senate and decided to go around the legislative branch via the EPA. Then he lost the drilling moratorium and chose to go around it by not issuing permits. Now obamacare has been struck down by the courts, but they plan on continuing to implement it anyway.
    Our prez seems to find the rule of law an inconvenience to be sidestepped and head faked instead of the structure of our society. I couldn’t imagine the wailing and gnashing of teeth that would go on if a prez with an (R) behind his name were pulling this.

  7. Won’t matter. Feldman is not a Party member, therefore his authority is Unauthority, his orders are Disorders, and his injunctions are Unjunctions. They do not exist and never did exist. The Party shall continue its Great Leap Forward without obstruction.

  8. I haven’t seen an instance where the law applies to the Political elite…. Are they not a power unto themselves???…..

  9. Obama cares not a whit what any court says unless he can claim it supports any of his positions.
    That’s ’cause he’s a “Progressive” and can do no wrong.
    Like these progressives

  10. A lawless administration in so many ways. If they’re not stripping bondholders of their legal rights (GM takeover), or ignoring a Federal Judges’ ruling on Obamacare ( ref. to todays demand that states still impliment the law), they are busy circumventing congress to impose their own rules on society (carbon taxation, card check, etc., etc., etc.)
    Investigations in the HoR need to start immediately.

  11. Did they get to this part of this yet?
    “Before the Obama Administration sweeps under the carpet the controversy over the drilling experts it falsely used to justify its moratorium, the incident bears another look. Not least because it underlines the purely political nature of a drilling ban that now threatens the Gulf Coast economy and drilling safety.
    When President Obama last month announced his six-month deepwater moratorium, he pointed to an Interior Department report of new “safety” recommendations. That report prominently noted that the recommendations it contained—including the six-month drilling ban—had been “peer-reviewed” by “experts identified by the National Academy of Engineering.” It also boasted that Interior “consulted with a wide range” of other experts. The clear implication was that the nation’s drilling brain trust agreed a moratorium was necessary.
    As these columns reported last week, the opposite is true. In a scathing document, eight of the “experts” the Administration listed in its report said their names had been “used” to “justify” a “political decision.” The draft they reviewed had not included a six-month drilling moratorium. The Administration added that provision only after it had secured sign-off. In their document, the eight forcefully rejected a moratorium, which they argued could prove more economically devastating than the oil spill itself and “counterproductive” to “safety.””
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704198004575311033371466938.html

  12. Article 2, section 1, paragraph 8 of the Constitution of the United States:
    “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of president of the United States, and will to the best of my ability preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the United States.”
    What form of government results when the president ignores his constitutional oath and governs by executive order (fiat) and through extra-constitutional agencies(i.e.,the EPA)?
    ——————————————————————–
    EPA Administrator Won’t Say If She Agrees With Climate Scientist Who Says There’s Been No Global Warming Since 1995
    http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/epa-administrator-ducks-question-global
    ———————————————————————-
    When viewing administrator Jackson in this video clip, I was reminded of the First Lady’s anti-fat campaign and if the First Lady has discussed the issue with Supreme Court Justices Kagan and Sotomayor, former economic adviser Christina Romer and administrator Jackson.

  13. Jeroen B. says:
    February 3, 2011 at 12:49 pm
    Wait.
    I think someone need to get their heads (and special interest registers) throughly checked/audited.
    Allow me an analogy to see if I correctly understand this:
    If a house burnt down because people ran through the house with flaming torches , and subsequently, the local authority banned the use of flaming torches indoors, which is then lifted because the flaming torch industry lobbied for it, then reimposed because it’s REALLY NOT SAFE to use flaming torches indoors, the authority is “in contempt” ?
    =======================================================
    Bad analogy Jeroen
    Here it is fixed:
    If a house burnt down because people lit a fire in the fireplace to keep warm, because of all this global warming, and subsequently, the local authority banned the use of fireplaces indoors…………………

  14. @latitude:
    I have a suspicion that any ‘leaking wells’ in Cuban waters will be less of an environmental disaster than the Deepwater Horizon became, if only because the Cubans realize they have got neither resources nor manpower to combat such a situation and will happily accept foreign aid when it’s offered to them, rather than tying said aid up in (EPA) red tape and union demands.
    So before you point fingers, realize that a large part of the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon disaster was of your country’s own making. I find it stunning to believe that nobody has even bothered to reflect on this, instead people are caterwauling that their precious right to despoil for profit is in mortal danger.
    Astounding.

  15. The administration is acting stupidly. When D.C. sells leases, the dollars go to our spending. When oil is produced, the gubment collects 18% royalty. We need the money. Imported oil collects no federal royalty.
    We had an oil spill. The 30 dollar increase in crude prices since then is about a 350 billion dollar burden on our economy. Am I the only economist that sees that?

  16. Throughout the U.S.A.’s history [at least from 1803] the judiciary have been the referees between the Legislative and Administrative branches. They interpret the Constitution, and when one of them throws a flag, the game stops until the matter is finally settled, usually in a higher court.
    Several federal judges have now thrown flags on Obama’s plays, but the Administration tramples over the law, the Constitution and our justice system. This is very serious. Practically treason, isn’t it?

  17. Jeroen B.,
    I’m sure that if you try really hard, you can manage to come up with an even more inane and unrelated analogy.

  18. I have learned through my work in the environmental sector that “regressives” talk about the shades of gray in law and science, but only respect the black and white that supports their position.
    This is true to some extent for all political types, but is far more advanced in my opinion with those on the North American left. It may also apply elsewhere, but my experience does not include those places outside of the US and Canada.
    It does annoy me. Even more annoying is that the left constantly claims to be tolerant when all the evidence shows otherwise.

  19. And Vinson offered no stay in his judgement against O-care. The citations against this admin are mounting. Coverups by DOJ and DHS already noted. Look for unfunded spending by the EPA during the spring after Fed shutdown is finally over.

  20. Actually it’s not at all like running through a house with flaming torches. It’s more like a bad plumbing contractor dropped a torch and burned down a business under construction. So the local government denies all new business construction. And closes existing businesses because they might burn down..
    When this is brought to court. The judge says the reaction is excessive. But the local government say ” up yours” to the court, and continues to deny new business construction. And forces people from the community to travel great distances to buy goods. And enriching other towns, rather than the local community.

  21. The Obama Administration may have used contempt in this court ruling, but for shutting down the internet, it certainly wants to cross its t’s and dot its i’s ahead of time, by skipping judicial review altogether.
    Renewed Push to Give Obama an Internet “Kill Switch”
    A revised version of a bill giving the President power over the internet in an emergency includes new language saying that the federal government’s designation of vital Internet or other computer systems “shall not be subject to judicial review.”

  22. Jeroen B. says:
    February 3, 2011 at 1:22 pm
    @latitude:
    I have a suspicion that any ‘leaking wells’ in Cuban waters will be less of an environmental disaster than the Deepwater Horizon became
    =====================================================
    Jeroen, you either mis-read, or mis-interpreted.
    Cuba has no intention of maintaining the wells at all.
    Cuba is selling the drilling rights to foreign countries. China has bought several and so has Venezuela. Those countries will be responsible for their own wells.
    The only points are, we will have no recourse of anything happens. Our laws are stupid to ban us from drilling, in our own waters, but allowing other countries to drill in those exact same waters when we have no control.
    ..and then they turn around and sell it back to us

  23. Fortune has an excellent article going in depth on the BP spill. Basically it boiled down to cost-cutting, lazyness, and not listening to engineers. BP has had quite a few disasters resulting from process maintenance screw ups as it seems they have no hard a fast proceedures, just kind of wing it when things go wrong.
    It’s an old conundrum, business cut costs and play chicken with disasters, government regulates and taxes businesses to death… which result in more cost-cutting… etc…

  24. Well let me see, a Federal Court has also ruled that Obamacare bill is unconstitutional; which means there is NO Obamacare bill for the Congress to repeal; Obamacare is kaput.
    So now let’s see how the contempt of court rulings go in this since “The White House” which I take to mean President Obama; have said “so what?” to the Court’s ruling. The court even cited Obama’s own words (as a Constitutional law expert and former Professor of Constitutional law) that establish that even obama can see that the law must be unconstitutional because of the very terms that Obama insisted be in there; while asserting that they couldn’t be removed from the bill, and leave ANY bill.
    There IS NO Obamacare bill; it’s gone.

  25. If our Federal Government believes they are free to ignore decisions by Federal Courts, what reason do we have to believe they would not similarly ignore rulings by the Supreme Court itself? (Or work around them).
    The EPA has already ignored the intent of Congress by circumventing control of carbon.
    This will become a Constitutional crisis, though we don’t know it yet.

  26. Jeroen B. says:
    February 3, 2011 at 12:49 pm
    Wait.
    I think someone need to get their heads (and special interest registers) throughly checked/audited.
    Allow me an analogy to see if I correctly understand this:
    If a house burnt down because people ran through the house with flaming torches , and subsequently, the local authority banned the use of flaming torches indoors, which is then lifted because the flaming torch industry lobbied for it, then reimposed because it’s REALLY NOT SAFE to use flaming torches indoors, the authority is “in contempt” ?
    WUWT ?

    As has been pointed out, your analogy is somewhat lacking. Since Cuba is allowed to sell drilling rights to wells off of Florida leaving us no recourse should anything go wrong, a proper way to portray your analogy would go like this: We outlaw any use of fire in our house including gas water heaters, gas stoves, gas furnaces, while allowing your neighbors to run through your house with lit torches, all because part of your house once burned down due to extreme negligence on your part.
    Deepwater horizon was tragic, but one failure is not a valid sample for the safety/danger levels of a particular endeavor. If this were so, we would have stopped exploring space after Apollo 1 caught on fire on the pad.

  27. “”””” Jeroen B. says:
    February 3, 2011 at 12:49 pm
    Wait.
    I think someone need to get their heads (and special interest registers) throughly checked/audited.
    Allow me an analogy to see if I correctly understand this:
    If a house burnt down because people ran through the house with flaming torches , and subsequently, the local authority banned the use of flaming torches indoors, which is then lifted because the flaming torch industry lobbied for it, then reimposed because it’s REALLY NOT SAFE to use flaming torches indoors, the authority is “in contempt” ? “””””
    Well I do believe that people have run through indoors, with flaming torches, and not only not get stopped but got cheered along; but they didn’t burn the place down; happens every two and four years at the Olympic games.
    Monster truck shows, and WWF wrestling fire off flaming torches indoors all the time; with impunity.
    You see burning the house down is what we seek to prevent; not the running through with a flaming torch.

  28. Pull My Finger said “It’s an old conundrum, business cut costs and play chicken with disasters, government regulates and taxes businesses to death… which result in more cost-cutting… etc…”
    Geesh, PMF . . . You got to quite pulling your own finger!!!

  29. Jeroen B. says:
    February 3, 2011 at 12:49 pm
    Wait.
    I think someone need to get their heads (and special interest registers) throughly checked/audited.
    Allow me an analogy to see if I correctly understand this:
    If a house burnt down because people ran through the house with flaming torches , and subsequently, the local authority banned the use of flaming torches indoors, which is then lifted because the flaming torch industry lobbied for it, then reimposed because it’s REALLY NOT SAFE to use flaming torches indoors, the authority is “in contempt” ?

    Well, not exactly – in this case the “authority” banned the use of houses, whether there were flaming torches in them or not.

  30. Forget about law or “protect and defend”. History shows us what every elitist dictatorship has done when a system of law or democracy is in their way. Whether it is fascism, communism, junta etc., the tactics are the same. Use the law to obtain control, ignore the law when it goes against you, and finally use force to maintain power.
    Our guys need to start drilling, now, and call their bluff or force the use of force to show them for what they are. The leftists are street fighters and conservatives want to fight by the Marquis de Queensbury rules. The only reason fascism beat communism in Europe in the last century was the fascists were better at the street fighting and fought dirtier than the commies. They also murdered way less people than the communists. The only ones to beat the Russian communists at murder were the Chinese communists.

  31. Hans Sennholz an Economics Professor at Grove City College in PA, used to warn about the “Coming of Caesar.” The behavior of this administration has a lot of trappings of the original “Boys from Italy.” He’s daring Congress and the Judiciary to take him to task, thus far, he’s far from losing. Lots of legal rulings, lots of no action. Talk and writing are cheap, it’s the actions that mark the men and women who matter.
    If those of us who care keep working on the education of the populous we may yet stem the tide. Woe is us if we sit on the couch and bitch at the TV. /rant

  32. Jeroen B. says:
    February 3, 2011 at 12:49 pm
    Wait.
    …because it’s REALLY NOT SAFE to use flaming torches indoors, the authority is “in contempt” ?”
    Let’s try a different version of your analogy:
    A guy lives in a glass house. He decides he would like a new window in his house. So, ignoring all the safety warnings, regulations and proper procedure, he goes outside and grabs a stone and throws it through the wall. His house collapses.
    A local authority comes through and takes ALL the stones in the entire village and goes on TV immediately “Look, I kicked some ass, and I saved the village!”,
    and then a judge says “hey, stop taking all the stones, that dumbass in the glass house was the problem, give them back”
    and the authority gives back some stones,
    but then raids all the houses in the night to steal them back and then goes on TV to say “WE SAVED THE VILLAGE FROM ITSELF!!! ”
    and the judge goes “no you didn’t, you stole all the stones after we told you not to so you could go on TV”
    and the authority goes “BUT THE VILLAGE!!! ”
    and the judge goes “no, you’re in contempt of my orders which are part of the system of checks and balances to protect the people from their elected officials in exactly situations like this, the PEOPLE, not the houses in the village”
    and the authority will go “BUT THE VILLAGE!!! ”
    There, that is a much, much better analogy.

  33. The Obama administration doesn’t simply have contempt of court. They have contempt of the United States itself I fear.

  34. George E. Smith says:
    There IS NO Obamacare bill; it’s gone.
    ———————————————————————————–
    Obamacare is, at the least, on life-support until the fat-ladies sing (SCOTUS hands down its decision).
    Before SCOTUS is consulted, the appellate court may have its say of yea or neigh, although
    Virginia Attorney General Urges Supreme Court to Hear Health Law Challenge Now
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/02/03/virginia-attorney-general-urges-supreme-court-hear-health-law-challenge/

  35. I agree with Smokey (1:22 p); when the Administration tramples over the law, this is very serious. About as close to treason as one can get. But then our President has dual allegiance. His father was a British Commonwealth, then Kenyan citizen. Individuals with dual allegiances are not supposed to even run for President. What’s up with that? And who continues to refuse to discuss the truth of this reality. How many laws trampled, how many untruths, how many government takeovers does it take until everyone wakes up?

  36. “Robert A says: February 3, 2011 at 1:46 pmIf our Federal Government believes they are free to ignore decisions by Federal Courts, what reason do we have to believe they would not similarly ignore rulings by the Supreme Court itself? (Or work around them).
    The EPA has already ignored the intent of Congress by circumventing control of carbon.
    This will become a Constitutional crisis, though we don’t know it yet.”
    And Chicago, D.C. and others are circumventing the Supreme Court decision on the right to keep and bear arms. While an unauthorized body, the fed reserve, prints money. We have a constitutional crisis right now and not many notice it.

  37. Combine the drill ban with the general anti-drilling sentiment of this administration and the situation in the middle east, with its potential for oil supply disruption…
    We may yet have the decarbonized economy that the greens want, without any cap and tax or other policies being implemented.

  38. George E. Smith says:
    February 3, 2011 at 1:53 pm
    “”””” Jeroen B. says:
    February 3, 2011 at 12:49 pm
    Wait.
    You see burning the house down is what we seek to prevent; not the running through with a flaming torch.
    ======================================================
    Well, only some George, only some of us. Others value inanimate matter over the quality of life for the general public. There are also some opportunists that have an inordinate fear of a particular molecule called carbon dioxide. They used this tragedy to further their cause. Then, of course, there are those who are of even more suspect character…….
    As Latitude pointed out, this moratorium doesn’t ban deep sea drilling. It bans the U.S. from deep sea drilling. Apparently, many feel Cuba sells better the same oil, and Venz and China are more deserving of oil. I wonder, do those countries have anything in common that would cause the U.S. to be separated from them?

  39. Robert A says:
    The EPA has already ignored the intent of Congress by circumventing control of carbon.
    —————————————————————————————
    The EPA can be faulted for a number of tyrannical actions and regulations, but they are acting on the scientifically ignorant decision by the SCOTUS in Massachusetts v. EPA, which decision declared carbon dioxide to be a pollutant.

  40. I’m looking forward to the Chinese declaring that our territorial waters cease at three miles and drilling up to that line for all it’s worth. After all, it really doesn’t matter who brings the oil to market, except in as far as who gets the production jobs.
    There are close to 300 million vehicles in this country that don’t run on green tech. In ten years, with massive investment in green tech, there will still be close to 300 million vehicles in this country that don’t run on green tech.
    Bottom line, we need all the oil we can get. One of the biggest crimes in human history was capping one of the most productive oil wells of all time (sure, that’s based on the government’s wild exaggerations of the BP spill size, but still–that was one hell of an oil well that could be producing right now!). Billions of lives depend on civilization’s main energy sources. It’s nothing short of mass murder on an unprecedented scale to impede energy exploration and exploitation and risk a resultant collapse of civilization.

  41. James Sexton says:
    February 3, 2011 at 3:27 pm
    As Latitude pointed out, this moratorium doesn’t ban deep sea drilling. It bans the U.S. from deep sea drilling.
    ================================================
    Exactly, we’re only hurting ourselves. As long as the oil/crude is there, someone is going to get it and use it.
    It’s the same non-sense as banning coal plants in this country. We have the largest coal reserves. Stopping us from burning it will not stop other countries from burning it. We will just mine it and sell it to them.
    This is also one of the main reasons China is so “for” global warming legislation.
    They know they will need more oil/crude, if they can slow us down, it’s just more for them.
    Somehow these green/enviro whack jobs think moving pollution, oil exploration, etc to another country solves the problem.

  42. In effect Judge Feldman has voided the DOI deepwater drilling regulations. He has broad discretion in deciding how to deal with the contempt. He can order
    secretary Salazar to appear in court and ream him a new one. He awarded substantial attorneys fees to the plaintiff. He can supervise the development and promulgation of new permtting rules. He can order DOI to start issuing new drilling permits ASAP to abrogate the ongoing irreparable damage Obama’s minions have caused.
    Judge Feldman’s decision is a preview of what Judge Vinson can do if the Obama Administration continues to implement Obamacare after he declared the law unconstitutionally void.
    We have ringside seats from which to observe how our President, who believes he is above the law, deals with the wrath of District Judges as he flaunts their decisions. Unless Obama obeys, he could bring down his presidency. I would not bet against the judges.
    We might get a rational energy policy yet.

  43. “China takes big lead in CO2 emissions race
    February 1, 2011
    The Department of Energy released yesterday its estimates for global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from energy use:
    U.S. emissions were 5.42 billion tons, about 17.8% of global emissions (2nd place).
    China’s emissions were 7.71 billion tons, about 25.3% of global emissions (1st place).
    India has overtaken Russia for third place (1.60 vs. 1.57 billion tons).”

  44. Jim G says:
    February 3, 2011 at 2:57 pm
    “Robert A says: February 3, 2011 at 1:46 pmIf our Federal Government believes they are free to ignore decisions by Federal Courts, what reason do we have to believe they would not similarly ignore rulings by the Supreme Court itself? (Or work around them).
    ——————————————————————————
    As President Andrew Jackson said of Justice John Marshall: “Now that he has made his decision, let him enforce it.” That pretty much sums up the attitude of the Obama administration…

  45. So the judge holds the Obama Administration in contempt?
    Take a number and get in line, judge.

  46. It is difficult to understand why the media does not let the public know the economic impact of the administration’s negative policy toward oil and natural gas production. The policy of choking off US production not only increases our oil imports with the corresponding flow of dollars to foreign countries, it ignores the huge taxes and royalties that the treasury collects from our oil companies. I guess they don’t care about the deficit.
    Since Obama took office and removed rich oil/gas sources off the table and essentially stopped lease sales, the treasury collection has fallen dramatically. Gulf coast offshore production has fallen 20%.
    Some recent facts:
    “The deficit? The oil industry already pays the US treasury more than $95 million a day in taxes, rent, royalties and the like. If you expand exploration, you expand revenues. ”
    “If America unlocked its oil and gas reserves, the government could take in an estimated $1 trillion to $2 trillion more revenue over the coming years. That’s not counting the revenues from the stimulus of lower fuel and energy costs.”
    Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/drill_obama_drill_SSKeRpmku3HEDRb4mjujmN#ixzz1CxSUTp7j
    Furthermore:
    “According to the MMS, annual revenues from federal onshore and offshore (OCS) mineral leases are one of the federal government’s largest sources of non-tax income. In 2000, the MMS collected $5 billion in oil and gas royalties. The bulk of this ($4 billion) came from offshore production, with natural gas production generating 60 percent of the royalty revenue. For federal onshore lands, gas production generated over 70 percent of the almost $1 billion in royalties. The MMS also collected over $1 billion in bonus bids and rental payments to bring the total federal revenue collected by MMS from oil and gas leasing to approximately $6.3 billion”
    In addition:
    “CLAIM: The American people aren’t getting their fair share from oil and gas companies drilling and producing on federal lands in and in federal waters.
    FACT: The U.S. government’s revenues from federal oil and gas production and leasing is on par with the rest of the world when bonus bids – the upfront fees paid by oil and natural gas companies to purchase leases – are factored in. In 2008, the U.S. collected almost $23 billion in revenues from federal oil and gas production and leases: $13 billion in royalties and $10 billion in bonus bids.”
    http://www.api.org/aboutoilgas/sectors/explore/oilandnaturalgas.cfm
    Think this revenue continues when oil/gas leasing is curtailed? When our politicians talk about subsidies to the oil companies they mean that the lease and royalty deals don’t extract enough (their definition of a subsidy). They don’t like the agreements Clinton made when oil prices were $18/bbl and royalties were reduced for deep offshore drilling to incentivize costly production, and they call it a subsidy.
    Finally, if the health of the environment was the inspiration behind the drilling moratoriums, why did the Obama administration transfer $2 billion in American borrowed dollars to help fund the Brazilian oil company Petrobras so that the company can continue to drill in nearly 3,000 meters of water, nearly twice the depth of the Gulf? Is it a mere coincidence that Petrobras is heavily supported by Obama’s associate George Soros, who also invested millions into the Brazilian oil company.
    Can it get any worse?

  47. Ed Scott: The EPA can be faulted for a number of tyrannical actions and regulations, but they are acting on the scientifically ignorant decision by the SCOTUS in Massachusetts v. EPA, which decision declared carbon dioxide to be a pollutant.
    Don’t think so, Ed. I believe the SCOTUS

  48. merely passed the decision to EPA, saying they had authority to make the call. So, it was the EPA that showed scientific ignorance. Check if I’m wrong. (Apologies for the split message. Not sure how that happened.)

  49. Does anyone know how rare/not rare it is for a judge to make such a ruling about a branch of the US government?
    How many times has this happened during the past 20 years? During the past 100?

  50. Danj, thanks for the Andy Jackson reference which is about the Marshall court’s ruling that the ethnic cleansing of the SE tribes was unconstitutional.
    Now perhaps 0 is no AJ as previously pointed out, but his following such precedent is quite interesting coming from a liberal. I’d love to see the opposition use that analogy.
    I should also note that AJ succeeded and thousands died as they traveled west to what is now Oklahoma. Sixty years later most of the land given to the tribes was taken (stolen) back.

  51. You do know Nazi Germany fell in 1945 and the USSR lasted a good 55 years after that? And Communism spread across most of Eurasia in those years? While the Soviets and ChiComs did murder more people than Hitler, they had a lot more time to work with. They were all a little too good at killing people.

    The only reason fascism beat communism in Europe in the last century was the fascists were better at the street fighting and fought dirtier than the commies. They also murdered way less people than the communists. The only ones to beat the Russian communists at murder were the Chinese communists.

  52. “Pull My Finger says:
    February 4, 2011 at 5:37 am
    You do know Nazi Germany fell in 1945 and the USSR lasted a good 55 years after that? And Communism spread across most of Eurasia in those years? While the Soviets and ChiComs did murder more people than Hitler, they had a lot more time to work with. They were all a little too good at killing people.”
    Most estimates are that the Russian Commies killed about 35 mm, mostly by starving them to death, mostly Ukranians, mostly during the war years, to feed their war machine, Nazis 12 to 15 mm. Chicoms 60 to 65 mm, yes, over a longer period of time. You are right, there are no good guys here but we never hear much about the communists’ record compared to all we hear about the Nazis maybe because the commies were our “allies”. Also, many if not most, of those killed by the Nazis were communists or communist sympathizers. Stalin killed anyone who could even potentially be a future threat to his personal power, much more ruthless than was Hitler. Proabaly why he was on the winning side. They were both evil in the truest sense of the word but there is a scorecard even for evil and people fear fascism more than they fear “socialism” and that is the danger of not reporting all the facts.

  53. a very naughty comment ,
    Nostradamus mistook hister for hitler
    Did he also mistake Obama for Mabuse ?
    Anyway nostradamus had particular problems with the s !

  54. Section. 4.
    The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors

  55. Let me see…The Government bans Drilling in all US waters by America Companies because a Foreign Owned Oil Company and one of their own Inspectors Breaks the Safety rules? The result of this is a massive spill that is could have been brought under control well before it was so bad if Obama had of allowed skimmers from other Countries into the area This Blow out also would have been easier to cap if this Drilling was allowed in shallower waters of the Gulf!!!

  56. Oh Yes…If Deep water drilling is so dangerous then Why did the Obama Administration send 2 Billion of our tax dollars to help fund even Deeper Water Drilling off the Brazilian Coast???

  57. It is obvious that this administration will do anything legal or illegal to choke off the supply of conventional fuels to our industry and us commoners.
    Below is another example of stopping drilling and production at sites already leased.
    Sooner or later the government will be required to return the Millions of dollars companies paid the purchase the lease.
    Even Democratic Senators are blaming Obama and the administration.
    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Shell-No-Beaufort-Sea-apf-844337881.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=main&asset=&ccode=
    “ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Shell Alaska has dropped plans to drill in the Arctic waters of the Beaufort Sea this year and will concentrate on obtaining permits for the 2012 season, company Vice President Pete Slaiby said Thursday.
    The recent remand of air permits issued by the Environmental Protection Agency was the final driver behind the decision, Slaiby said at a news conference.
    Alaska receives upward of 90 percent of its general fund revenue from the petroleum industry, and top state officials reacted strongly to the decision. U.S. Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, blamed the Obama administration and the EPA.
    “Their foot dragging means the loss of another exploration season in Alaska, the loss of nearly 800 direct jobs and many more indirect jobs,” Begich said. “That doesn’t count the millions of dollars in contracting that won’t happen either at a time when our economy needs the investment.”
    The EPA issued Shell an air permit, but the agency’s review board granted an appeal because of limited agency analysis regarding the effect of emissions from drilling ships and support vessels.
    Slaiby said the issue is not with the environment but with the process not being satisfied. He said Shell has no air issues with Alaska villages.
    “That’s coupled with $15 million in improvements we made on these assets to put together what’s really a world-class program,” he said.”

  58. Not what I meant Mark T.
    Democracy is electing people to run the country yes? If you don’t like the way they do the job, well that is what elections are for. What I find bizarre is trying to run a country by court case case.

  59. Ian,
    I think you are confused as to a Democracy that has a Constitution and laws that are passed by the Congress that must be followed and enforced.
    The court case that the Administration lost declared that there was no legal bases for the Administration action. According to the court the action was arbitrary and not based on any existing law or regulation. In the US system, the rulling of the court must be followed or appealed. The edict from the administratio was not legal according to the court case. The contempt occured since the Administration declared a second order similar to the first after losing in court.
    Since we are not under a dictatorship the administration must follow the laws of the land and the Constitution. If they thought they were on legal grounds, they should have appealed to a higher court rather than issuing another edict in contempt of the Court.
    The President does not have the power to do anything he wants, there is a balance of power between the President, Congress, and the Judiciary to avoid the President acting as a dictator.
    The same issue exists re Obama care and the 2 Judges have already declared that it violates the powers of the federal government . The Administration needs to appeal this, and the determination will ultimately be determined by the Supreme Court. According to the US system they have final say, not the President.

  60. “Ian H says: February 5, 2011 at 1:25 amNot what I meant Mark T.
    Democracy is electing people to run the country yes? If you don’t like the way they do the job, well that is what elections are for. What I find bizarre is trying to run a country by court case case.”
    We are not a democracy here in the US of A, we are a constitutional republic with checks and balances among our branches of government to protect our God given rights from the tyrany of the few or the majority, whichever the case may be.

  61. Mark T says:
    February 4, 2011 at 6:12 pm
    Indeed, Ian H., unless running it into the ground is really their objective.
    Mark, Ever read “confessions of an economic hit man” written by John Perkins. The objective is great riches, the result is running a country into the ground.

  62. Don Shaw says:
    Don,
    Excellent summary but I said it in significantly fewer words. The key is that the majority in a democracy can also be tyranical. I assume that Ian is a Brit or from a “more direct democracy” type of system though there are many here in the US that think we are a democracy. Good comment!
    Jim

  63. Isn’t the USA in a state of war? Seem to recall that Bush used this to override your Constitutional rights. I could be mis-remembering this, but I think the tyrranical few have won again. You already gave up all your money supply to a coterie of bankers, they’re the ones ruling your govt. and so you. Welcome to the club.

  64. http://consumercal.blogspot.com/2011/01/4th-amendment-takes-another-hit-phone.html
    Lots more nibbling away at this since the Patriot Act. At least you haven’t yet given away your sovereignty to another. Ireland simply gave it all away to the EU, second time around after being forced to have another referendum and after ballot papers were ‘taken into custody’ for a while by the police before being returned..
    “Stop throwing the Constitution in my face”, Bush screamed back. “It’s just a goddamned piece of paper!”
    http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Bush_administration_vs._the_U.S._Constitution
    It will be interesting to see how Obama responds to this.
    [As an aside, I think the US Constitution an amazing doc., a blueprint which could have been spread as an ideal rather than the failed ‘democracy’ model.]

  65. Myrrh says:
    February 5, 2011 at 12:53 pm
    “Stop throwing the Constitution in my face”, Bush screamed back. “It’s just a goddamned piece of paper!”
    Interesting you bringing this up . . . . There are plenty, out there that think it’s just a piece of paper, when if it’s principles were “real”-ly followed it would be “peace on paper”.

  66. Interesting to hear Americans so willingly admit that the US isn’t a democracy. I have often thought that myself. However my experience has tended to be that Americans will not only stridently claim to have a democracy, but also lay claim to have practically invented the concept.
    You admire the constitution. Personally I think it sucks as the basis for a system of governmment. I also think it is dangerous and unhealthy the way that you brainwash your young into adoring this document and tolerate no criticism of it.
    The constitution designs a system of government which is deliberately crippled. The purported justification is that power is dangerous, and must be divided so that it cannot be abused. However it is more likely that rich guys who had just won a revolution to avoid paying taxes wanted a weak government that they could control.
    However power doesn’t go away in a divided system. It still gets exercised somehow. All that division does is obscure the exercise of power and allow it to be exercise out of the public eye via backroom deals. It is a recipe for corruption. Influence gets peddled. Backs get scratched. Money is exchanged. Decisions get made in secret. And nobody is ultimately responsible for anything.
    The tyranny of the majority is an 18th century sound bite. It sounds impressive (and uses a hard to spell word), but I bet you can’t show me an example in a modern democracy.
    Back when the constitution was written representative democracy was still rare and the writers of the constitution did a lot of theorising and worrying about it how it might work. The tyranny of the majority was one of the theoretical problems they were concerned about.
    But today there are lots of democracies of various flavours in the world. We don’t need to conjecture about how democracy might work. If the tyranny of the majority is a real problem you should have no problem coming up with a few examples – yes?
    And as you look for examples of tyranny in other democratic systems to demonstrate how superior your constitution is, you might want to also think about the tyrannies that have existed in your own supposedly tyrrany proofed system. Slavery springs to mind.

  67. Laurie Bowen – we can see by the post following yours that the US Gov in spreading the idea of ‘democracy’ for other countries, those particularly it goes in for smash and grab, has everyone now believing that it was saying that the US was a democracy.. The power of memes.

  68. Ian H. said:

    Democracy is electing people to run a country yes?

    No. That is the definition of a republic. In a democracy people vote on every decision.
    Not understanding this explains your comments regarding tyranny of the majority. The reason you won’t find modern examples is that no countries actually implement a democracy precisely because of the tyranny issue. If they did, you’d see it.
    It is not strange at all to have cases decided by courts. They are the only protections people have from bad laws.
    Mark

  69. I have an excellent excuse for poor spelling, I am an engineer that types directly into this blog with no spell check. I would only add that our admittedly imperfect system of constitutional republic has out performed all the political/economic systems invented to date in terms of prosperity and freedom while never taking true advantage of our ability for domination of others and pulling other other countries’ fat out of the fire at great cost in blood and money. This is one of the reasons we are all doing this blog in English instead of German or Russian or Chinese (yet).

    • Hear hear.
      America is the beacon of hope for all men who wish to be free through their own efforts.

  70. “”””” Mark T says:
    February 5, 2011 at 5:29 pm
    Ian H. said:
    Democracy is electing people to run a country yes?
    No. That is the definition of a republic. In a democracy people vote on every decision. “””””
    ” The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union, a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; …………..”
    That in case you don’t know it is from Article IV, Section 4 of the US Constitution. Good luck on getting any of that protection against invasion. My apologies if I didn’t get the correct punctuation or capitalizations; I can only remember so myuch stuff.

  71. “”””” Myrrh says:
    February 5, 2011 at 12:53 pm
    http://consumercal.blogspot.com/2011/01/4th-amendment-takes-another-hit-phone.html
    Lots more nibbling away at this since the Patriot Act. At least you haven’t yet given away your sovereignty to another. Ireland simply gave it all away to the EU, second time around after being forced to have another referendum and after ballot papers were ‘taken into custody’ for a while by the police before being returned..
    “Stop throwing the Constitution in my face”, Bush screamed back. “It’s just a goddamned piece of paper!”
    http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Bush_administration_vs._the_U.S._Constitution “””””
    You should verify your facts before posting them here at WUWT.
    Why don’t you find an AUDIO clip, Of former President Bush actually saying that. Nobody else can, or in any other way, verify that he said that. Can you find any other AUDIO clip about anything else Bush ever said, in which he used the ‘GD’ term.
    Whether he believed it’s a piece of paper (which it isn’t) or not; he nevertheless took an oath to uphold and protect it. I can even believe he might think it is just a pice of paper. The wording of that alleged statement is more like an Oliver Stone script; that something he would say.

  72. “”””” Ian H says:
    February 5, 2011 at 2:58 pm
    Interesting to hear Americans so willingly admit that the US isn’t a democracy. I have often thought that myself. However my experience has tended to be that Americans will not only stridently claim to have a democracy, but also lay claim to have practically invented the concept.
    You admire the constitution. Personally I think it sucks as the basis for a system of governmment. I also think it is dangerous and unhealthy the way that you brainwash your young into adoring this document and tolerate no criticism of it. “””””
    Well then you obviously have no understanding of us.
    We ARE a Republic; well a Union of Sovereign Republics actually.
    BUT, we do make use of Democratic principles, in selecting our government. The People by Democratic vote elect the members of both houses of the Congress. On the Other hand, the several States , elect the President of The United Sates; by means of the Electoral College. Each State in turn chooses its electors to that Electoral College, by means that are separately determined by the laws of each State; and from a slate of candidates, that are likewise chosen. Democratic voting of the people of each State ends up choosing the distribution of the electors, according to the traditions and laws of that State; but it is up to the electros in the electoral college to make the final choice.
    So what are the ten top countires in the world that DO have a Democratic form of Gevernment ?
    Think how wonderful everything would be, when major decisions are made by people who have NO vested interest in the outcome of their deliberations; no skin in the game so to speak.

  73. As for tolerating no criticism of the Constitution; that simply is not a true statement; and the document includes within it; all the machinery required to amend it as that is deemed to be necessary; and that has taken place at least 26 times; that I am aware of; including at least in one case, the going back and forth to restore a status quo, as in the Prohibition case.
    Other Countries can choose their own poison from oppressive dictatorships, to free love, as far as I am concerned. Some of those have stood the test of time; others haven’t and won’t.
    The British system, stems from a long history of evolution; a most interesting process that has had its ups and downs. It is now on its way to being destroyed by multiculturalism; in a somewhat similar manner to the way the USA is going. It used to be called Balkanization.
    The Biblical Tale of the Tower of Babel, is an example of multiculturalism at its finest.
    Actually, you can’t meaningfully discuss the US Constitution, without first understanding the Declaration of Independence; which is where Americans actually declare the scope of the rights of the people.
    The Constitution adds nothing to those rights; it actually gives upo some of them to the Government; “in order to form a more perfect Union…” But it does specifically tell the Government in no uncertain terms of certain issues it is to butt out of completely, and defines what The Congress is authorised to do; which is a list of maybe 20 things; 17 of which are specified in Article I, Section 8.

  74. Myrrh said . . . . “those particularly it goes in for smash and grab, has everyone now believing that it was saying that the US was a democracy.. The power of memes.”
    If you are talking about, the fascists, and communist statements . . . are they not “laissez-faire”, no rules, capitalists . . . of and by the those in control of the “State”? . . .
    and could you tell me what is “memes”? Is that like mine, mine, all mine?

  75. George E. Smith said “As for tolerating no criticism of the Constitution; . . . . ”
    I just say, if you can’t burn the flag . . . . you may as well just burn the flag . . . .

  76. GES

    it is up to the electros

    Heh, heh.
    You must be thinking of Technocracy!
    I assume the “electros” are battery-operated robots.
    😉

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