Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Liars, all

Do you ever feel as though you are paying some kind of hidden tax or ransom each time you buy fuel of any kind? Maybe you've wondered why gasoline prices have doubled in the past year and a half?

Have you wondered if there was any hanky-panky going on between energy companies, this administration & VP Cheney - especially since Cheney has steadfastly refused to release any documents concerning their 'secret' meetings? Cheney & his staff adamantly maintain that the President & Vice President have the "constitutional right to obtain information in confidentiality", (and apparently from anyone they wish to listen to, especially if they can somehow collude together).

Well, wonder no more:

These were meetings which oil company executives have denied to a man that ever took place. Nonetheless, according to the *Washington Post article:

"According to the White House document, Rouse met with task force staff members on Feb. 14, 2001. On March 21, they met with Archie Dunham, who was chairman of Conoco. On April 12, according to the document, task force staff members met with Conoco official Huffman and two officials from the U.S. Oil and Gas Association, Wayne Gibbens and Alby Modiano.

On April 17, task force staff members met with Royal Dutch/Shell Group's chairman, Sir Mark Moody-Stuart, Shell Oil chairman Steven Miller and two others. On March 22, staff members met with BP regional president Bob Malone, chief economist Peter Davies and company employees Graham Barr and Deb Beaubien.

Toward the end of the hearing, Lautenberg (D-NJ) asked the five executives: "Did your company or any representatives of your companies participate in Vice President Cheney's energy task force in 2001?" When there was no response, Lautenberg added: "The meeting . . . "

"No," said Raymond.

"No," said Chevron Chairman David J. O'Reilly.

"We did not, no," Mulva said.

"To be honest, I don't know," said BP America chief executive Ross Pillari, who came to the job in August 2001. "I wasn't here then."

"But your company was here," Lautenberg replied.

"Yes," Pillari said.

Shell Oil president John Hofmeister, who has held his job since earlier this year, answered last. "Not to my knowledge," he said."

(Oil industry executives testifying before the US Senate last week, left to right are Lee R. Raymond of Exxon Mobil, David J. O'Reilly of Chevron, James J. Mulva of ConocoPhillips, Ross Pillari of BP American and John Hofmeister of Shell Oil.)

So, to a man they all LIED. But, why should this be surprising since lying is the very defining hallmark of the current US administration many of whom spring exactly from these same precise roots?

So, how did they get away with lying to senators? Well, the answer will not be at all surprising to any Alaskan. *From the Washington Post article:

"The executives were not under oath when they testified, so they are not vulnerable to charges of perjury; committee Democrats had protested the decision by Commerce Chairman Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) not to swear in the executives."


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