May 26, 2008

Do You Own an Oil Company?

Bill Georgevich

Hear the 1 minute show:

"Do You Own an Oil Company?' -- that's what the American Petroleum institute's full page ads in Time Magazine are asking. The ad reminds us that it's millions of Americans owning a piece of the Oil and Gas industry who get hurt when government attempts to tax or regulate Big Oil. This warning is from the same industry who so recently denied the reality of global warming.

Yes, it is true that "tens of millions of Americans own a piece of the US Oil and Gas Industry", but it does not mean that "when the political rhetoric gets hot about increasing energy taxes or taking 'excess profits' from U.S. oil companies, it is important to step back, look at the facts, and ask yourself, 'who does that really hurt?'"

This the latest spin from the Petroleum Institute, the same folks that brought you the "myth" of Global Warming. If you are indeed a stock holder in the Oil and Gas business then you have a vote, a vote to influence these mega-corporations at stock holder meetings that oil as a fuel should be voluntarily phased out and used exclusively for durable goods like plastics. You, as a part owner of this business, have the right to demand that these companies take their billions and billions (127 billion in 2007 alone, according to Congress) in profits and invest that in renewable energy.

You can be sure that like all monolithic industries (remember Enron?), the Oil and Gas Corporations are hiding as much of their rising profits as possible. According to their own pie chart above just 1.5% of the oil business is owned by executives, yet the outgoing president of ExxonMobil got a 400 million dollar retirement check. That's nearly 20% of the 2.4 billion the Bush Administration has totally allotted for government spending on research into Wind, Solar, Hydrogen, Coal, and Nuclear combined!

The man who received the 1/2 billion dollar golden parachute was Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of ExxonMobil Lee R. Raymond. Hey Lee, how about sharing the wealth? Your buddy George Bush could use some help with the whole renewable energy, global warming thing. Your president is spending 2.4 billion dollars in Iraq every 40 hours and, since you, Lee, are earning $6,000/hr while in retirement, do you have any spare change for our War President?