Big Oil Always Wins

Big Oil welfare – big rip off for American taxpayers
Published on Friday, December 22, 2006.
Source: America Blog – By Chris in Paris

It’s no wonder the federal government did not want to release details for a year, because once again, it’s all handouts to Big Oil who set new records in profitability while sticking the middle class with the bill. Good grief, can we re-set priorities and worry about the middle class again and quit giving more welfare and handouts to the richest?

If Exxon can give half a billion dollars to the CEO, I see no reason why taxpayers should have to fund their business since they seem to be doing pretty well without taxpayer handouts. These are not small companies who need help to get started, but very mature companies who bathe their executives with lavish compensation packages and then pass on the bill to governments around the world, rich and poor alike. I don’t know what is worse between them asking or governments actually giving over the money.

The study, which the Interior Department refused to release for more than a year, estimates that current inducements could allow drilling companies in the Gulf of Mexico to escape tens of billions of dollars in royalties that they would otherwise pay the government for oil and gas produced in areas that belong to American taxpayers.

But the study predicts that the inducements would cause only a tiny increase in production even if they were offered without some of the limitations now in place. It also suggests that the cost of that additional oil could be as much as $80 a barrel, far more than the government would have to pay if it simply bought the oil on its own.

“They are giving up a lot of money and not getting much in return,” said Robert A. Speir, a former analyst at the Energy Department who worked on the report. “If they took that money, they could buy a whole lot more oil with it on the open market.”

Oil closed Thursday at $62.66 a barrel in regular trading.

Despite all of the claims by the GOP that we have to drill in coastal waters, the end result for consumers and taxpayers is limited. The GOP continues to give away public natural resources, well above international standards.

Read it here.

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