Here, you are urged and encouraged to run your mouths about something important.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


We learned some time ago how Barack Obama reacts to court rulings he doesn't like - he stomps, he stammers, he pouts, and he yammers. In the latest example, he does so vicariously through Department of Interior Secretary, Ken Salazar. On June 22nd, a Federal Judge in Louisiana struck down Obama's offshore drilling moratorium. In response - also on June 22nd - the Obama administration appealed the decision as Salazar simultaneously issued a statement saying he will issue a new drilling ban.

Salazar's move in particular carries with it chutzpah on steroids. As head of the Interior Department, Salazar oversees the Minerals Management Service (MMS). This fact is especially relevant because BP was actually in communication with MMS as early as February regarding concerns about the safety of the Deep Water Horizon rig. When viewed in that context, it's safe to say that Salazar is advocating a punitive course of action against all oil companies that drill offshore, all employees that work on those rigs, and any industries that help keep them running. This amounts to penalizing others for your own Department's incompetence. MMS - and by extension the Dept. of Interior - appears to have some culpability relative to the BP disaster while other oil companies have zero. This ranks right up there with having a tax cheat heading the Treasury Department.

Check out how MSNBC reports on the story:
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said Tuesday he will issue a new order imposing a moratorium on deepwater drillingafter a federal judge struck down the existing one.

Salazar said in a statement that the new order will contain additional information making clear why the six-month drilling pause was necessary in the wake of the Gulf oil spill. The judge in New Orleans who struck down the moratorium earlier in the day complained there wasn't enough justification for it.
When a judge rules against Obama, that ruling apparently involves complaining, which is what District Judge Martin Feldman did in the eyes of MSNBC in this case.


After reporting on Salazar's intentions without challenging them and coming off as bitter toward the judge, MSNBC takes it a step further, implying that the judge's ruling may have had something to do with ownership of oil stock. Not only do they report on it without any facts that his decision was related to such a premise, MSNBC doesn't even seem to know what stock he owns.
Feldman's financial disclosure report for 2008, the most recent available, shows holdings in at least eight petroleum companies or companies that invest in them, including Transocean Ltd., which owned the Deepwater Horizon. The report shows that most of his holdings were valued at less than $15,000, though it did not provide specific amounts.

It's not clear whether Feldman still has all of the energy industry stock listed in the report. Recent court filings indicate he may no longer have Transocean shares. He did not own any shares in big companies such as BP PLC, which was leasing the rig that exploded, or ExxonMobil.

Feldman did not immediately respond to a request for comment about his current holdings.
This is despicable reporting - yeah, I know it's MSNBC but this may be a new low. Ok, maybe not but it's still a dereliction of journalistic integrity. Why SHOULD Feldman dignify insinuations that his decision was corrupt due to a conflict of interest? As a judge, he deals in facts exclusively. Reporters making such claims had none.

MSNBC is implying a conflict of interest without any facts because it doesn't like the ruling. Why call into question the Judge's motives for ruling a certain way without investigating the evidence that Salazar's Department dropped the ball with respect to red flags coming from Deep Water Horizon, beginning back in February?

This episode is yet another in a long line of examples that illustrate Obama's immaturity. When something doesn't go his way, he can't accept it. This is particularly obvious when it comes to the courts. We all remember his reaction to the Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United vs. FEC; he called out the Supreme Court Justices at the State of the Union and began work on getting around that ruling, which served to demonize the five Justices who ruled in favor of Citizens United.

Of course, we also have the FCC attempting to circumvent a court ruling that said the former had no right to regulate the internet as a utility, thereby restricting access to web content.

h/t to Free Republic

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