Thursday, August 14, 2003

Taking Advantage

I'm watching Gov. Bill Richardson on Larry King Live right now, talking about all things blackout.

Here's the funny thing: he seems to be stressing rather forcefully the need for the President to propose a massive energy bill, and is saying that it is absolutely critical for Congress to pass such a bill.

I will refrain, for the moment, from pointing out the sudden flood of drool issuing forth from the President's major financial backers at the prospect of massive national support for a comprehensive energy bill drafted by the current administration.

Instead, let us focus on the major soundbites Gov. Richardson has been desperately attempting to imprint on my mind. Our infrastructure is massively out of date. We're barely wheezing by. We need to massively overhaul our infrastructure. We have a woeful lack of capacity. We need to increase energy production and build all kinds of new modern production facilities. We need to fight the local utilities tooth and nail in favor of...well, that part isn't quite clear.

These seem reasonable enough. But something about his manner piqued my curiosity. He seemed far too eager to convince me to demand that Congress immediately pass massive legislation with huge potential ramifications (and massive payouts to various players in the energy business), the necessary public discussion of which could not possibly take place in any but the most superficial form were Congress to actually pass it as quickly as he seems to want.

So I decided to take a slightly closer look at Mr. Richardson.

Courtesy of, I see that the Governor has some very interesting friends. When he ran for Governor of New Mexico, he resigned from a number of corporate boards, among them American Energy Group, Inc., Energy Investors Fund Group, Diamond Offshore, Valero Energy Group, TerraSolar (a solar power company), and Venoco (an oil and gas company).

Hmm. Interesting. But those were probably just honorary positions. No big deal.

So let's look at sources of income over $5,000 (the disclosure of which was required by New Mexico state law): Terra Solar, Intersate Natural Gas Association (trade association of the natural gas pipeline industry), EIF Management (Energy Investment Fund), Diamond Offshore Drilling Inc., and Valero Energy Corp. [among others]

Fucking shameless.

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