Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Here's a Surprise: Big Oil Execs Met with Cheney's Energy Task Force

If there was nothing improper in the secret deliberations of Dick Cheney's energy task force, then why has the White House steadfastly refused to reveal the identities of its participants? And if there was nothing improper, then why did the heads of several major oil companies deny their participation?
The Washington Post obtained a White House document that uncovers what has been kept secret for more than four years:
The document, obtained this week by The Washington Post, shows that officials from Exxon Mobil Corp., Conoco (before its merger with Phillips), Shell Oil Co. and BP America Inc. met in the White House complex with the Cheney aides who were developing a national energy policy, parts of which became law and parts of which are still being debated.
In a joint hearing last week of the Senate Energy and Commerce committees, the chief executives of Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp. and ConocoPhillips said their firms did not participate in the 2001 task force. The president of Shell Oil said his company did not participate "to my knowledge," and the chief of BP America Inc. said he did not know.
The executives don't have to worry about perjury. Commerce Committee Chairman Ted Stevens saw to it that they were excused from the indignity of having to be sworn in.
What we still don't know is how a thinking, reasoning adult can equate the interests of big oil with the energy needs of the rest of us.

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