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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

With Leaders Like These, What Do We Have to Fear? - Secretary of Energy Appoints Former Exxon CEO to Craft National Energy Policies

While I can't find confirmation of this in the news, Daniel Sweeney of Charge (blog) reports that this week, Secretary of Energy Samuel Bodman has appointed former Exxon-Mobil CEO, Lee Raymond, to head a group developing national energy policy initiatives.

As Sweeney points out:

"[This is the guy] who during his tenure at the oil giant funded pseudo-scientific research purporting to disprove the existence of global warming and scoffed at the notion of lessening foreign oil dependence through the promotion of alternative energy sources. Exxon-Mobil has been virtually alone among the biggest international petroleum companies in its failure to diversify into alternative energy in one form or another, and also has been unusual in its stated insistence that global climate change studies are “junk science”.

Exxon-Mobil under Raymond’s leadership also issued statements to the effect that current conventional oil reserves total in excess of 3.1 trillion barrels, almost double the median number cited by leading oil analysts, and suggested that oil producers would increase production to over 50% above current levels. Exxon also dismissed the conventional wisdom to the effect that almost all oil producers have already passed the peak of production. Scores of countries would be boosting production in the future according to Exxon’s top management."
Well I for one am extremely comforted to know that a man with such unflinching confidence in his positions, a man willing to scoff at the vast array of scientific evidence and opinion opposing him, a man with clear vision for where to lead this country during our modern energy crisis is now helping to craft national energy policy strategies. With leaders like these, we've got nothing to fear, right?!

All sarcasm aside, I am simply amazed at this appointment. First of all, I thought we had already bid a fond farewell to Mr. Raymond, but the man just won't stay down. Second, I can't imagine how Bush plans to reconcile the consistent positions of Mr. Raymond and Exxon-Mobile (at least he's been consistent, you've got to give him that) with Mr. Bush's recent (empty?) rhetoric about America's addiction to oil and talk about alternative fuels.

How do you square that circle, Mr. Bush?

Of course, this is just another indication of where Bush's true intentions and loyalties lie. Don't worry folks, Bush, Raymond and Co. will lead the way...

[An obvious hat tip to Mr Sweeney at Charge]


Anonymous said...

...for every gallon of gas pumped, the oil companies make 8 cents. For that same gallon, the US government takes in about 56 cents. Which is the bigger problem here? That fat slob in the picture is reaping record profits simply because we are using record amounts of fuel.

Jesse Jenkins said...

Notice that I didn't make any mention of oil companies' record profits in this post. I'm not accusing the oil companies of price gouging or anything like that.

My beef with Mr Raymond is not that his former company is earning record quarterly profits, or that this fat cat got a gigantic retirement package... beef with Mr. Raymond is that he has consistently worked to deny and disprove global climate change and confuse and stop any efforts to invest in combatting the threat of global warming. He has also consistently claimed that world reserves of oil are FAR higher than anyone else is claiming and while leading Exxon-Mobile, had the destinction of being the ONLY major oil company who refused to diversify their energy holdings into anything but oil and gas.

And now this man is apparently helping the Bush Administration craft our energy policies! A man who has denied to two key threats/problems that must be addressed by any forward thinking and sound energy policy - climate change and peak oil/resource depletion - is going to lead us into the future!

And with leaders like these, what a bleak future it will be...

My other beef here is with Mr. Bush, who speaks about ending America's addiction to oil out of one side of his mouth and appoints someone like Mr Raymond to craft energy policies out of the other side of his mouth. That's an inconsistency that I think reveals where Mr Bush's priorities really lie - and it's not with crafting policies that transition us into a healthy, sustainable, secure energy future...