Friday, October 28, 2005

"For Big Business, By Big Business"

Oil Companies post soaring profits; meanwhile the average American is paying record high prices at the pump, not to mention the devastating hurricanes, that wreaked havoc in the states making thousands homeless, seem to benefit the oil companies. Oddly, Katrina and Rita seem to be just what the oil companies and government want to see, because it gives them the excuse to reorganize the legislative agenda in favor of "Big Oil" even more than it already is. For example, tax breaks to stimulate the construction of more refineries and other things left out of a major energy bill Bush signed into law in August. Who cares if people are starving and homeless as long as the corporations are cashing in? It is projected that the world's five biggest investor- owned oil companies are heading for combined 2005 profit of almost $107 billion, and if the tax incentives go through and any other perks the oil industry could reap larger profits.

Not too long ago, we learned that oil companies not only manipulate Washington but also went one-step further and intentionally restrict refining capacity to increase their profits. It is becoming very clear that "for the people by the people" is closer to "for big business by big business" in this country.

The Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights (FTCR) published an article exposing internal oil company memos that show how the industry intentionally reduced domestic refining capacity to drive up profits. The exposure comes in the wake of Hurricane Katrina as the oil industry blames environmental regulation for limiting number of U.S. refineries.

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