Month 6, Day 24: Another Day, Another Dullard

The Boston Herald ran the same AP story on Feldman’s ruling blocking the drilling moratorium. For a dose of idiocy, check out the comments. The Herald has yet to run one of my letters. Or maybe they have, and don’t bother to call or confirm. How would I know?

Judge Feldman’s opinion is logically flawed. The government wants to stop exploratory drilling until it figures out what caused the catastrophe in the Gulf — and the judge decides that the platforms are safe, because nothing’s happened to them yet. Well, maybe that’s it’s done in Louisiana, but I learned that if something’s broken, you stop using it until it’s fixed. If my mechanic thinks my brakes are bad, it’s irresponsible to go back on the road, even if I haven’t had an accident. We don’t know all the factors that brought about the catastrophe on the Deepwater Horizon, and it’s a grotesque blunder to assume that because other drilling platforms haven’t yet exploded and sunk, they must be safe. I suspect the judge’s substantial investments had an influence; I have observed that oil, among its other malign side effects, appears to make people in positions of power act stupidly.

Warren Senders

Month 6, Day 23: The Dolphins Are Full Of Oil. Why Should Federal Judges Be Any Different?

So the judge who overturned the drilling moratorium turns out to own a bunch of stock in oil and drilling companies. Gosh! Who could have expected it?

Time Magazine ran an AP story on the injunction, but didn’t mention the Judge’s questionable investing practices, so I sent them the following:

It should come as no surprise that Judge Martin Feldman, who just blocked the administration’s proposed moratorium on deepwater drilling, appears have substantial investments in companies involved in the offshore oil industry. Judge Feldman, according to 2008 reports, even owns stock in Transocean, the owners of the ill-fated Deepwater Horizon platform. That Mr. Feldman did not immediately recuse himself from the case is revealing; it suggests that such a level of financial intimacy between the oil industry and the judiciary is not particularly remarkable. Oil kills pelicans, dolphins, fish and whales. It ruins ecosystems and local economies. It is destroying the atmosphere. It sullies everything it touches — including, apparently, the administration of justice in America. Even leaving aside the threat of catastrophic climate change, that alone should be reason to shift our consumption patterns — why continue giving money to the corrupt and undeserving?

Warren Senders