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Message from Horace Oilee: “Animal Farm is coming to you ” Nov 17, 2010

Posted on November 17, 2010

Message from Horace Oilee “Animal Farm is coming to you ” Nov 17, 2010

BOEMRE…. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (All kneel…)
Translated: Bureaucrats Over Everything, Missing Required Expertise????

The Gulf of Mexico in November, 2010 is stagnating. Pure and simple. The wheels of Free Enterprise are seizing up. Or, to put it bluntly, the wheels of Commerce are being sabotaged.
Why…!??
And with it, jobs. Hundreds of jobs. Maybe, very soon, thousands of jobs. Tens of thousands of jobs.
Why…!??
We Oil and Gas Workers know it, but Billy Jo Public, outrageously misled by the media, cynically misled by Big (Gormless) Government, doesn’t get it. Yet.
They will, sadly, get it, one day. Right in the shorts. Ka-BOOM in the wallet. When it’s too late. THEN there will be weeping and wailing. Outrage.
And pretty speeches from dim witted politicians. Well groomed puppets spouting empty promises.
Too late…

Start drilling, or start PAYING.

Little Barry Obama was fond of saying during the election rah-rag-rah that he would “lead us by the calloused hand”. Dude, you wouldn’t recognize a calloused hand if it slapped you round the room. YOU sure as hell never got a blister on your pretty little fingers…
If you, dear Reader, are a humorist, with a sense of profound historical irony, then you might be quietly shaking your head. The whole world wants Oil. The whole world is hunting for Oil. Exploring, drilling, investing.
Except… the United States Gormless Government in the Gulf of Mexico.

Governments all over the world are being very nice to Multi National Oil Exploration Companies. Big Investors. Except Hugo Chavez. But old Hugo is just another cliché socialist yapping bumpkin, promoted way above his level of incompetence. And he’ll soon learn his lesson about the cold facts of RealPolitik. Just another Community Organiser, somehow propelled by the Ignorant to lofty heights of Total Ignorance. Who does that remind you of?
But not the American Government. Our stellar “leaders” (when they are not worrying about the island of Guam tipping over, see here) or when they are not hiding their ignorance by the transparent means of resorting to Complete Gobbledygook ( click here) , or when they are not simply Denying Awkward Reality (see here), still just don’t get it. The “solutions” they advocate are always variants of the same tired old saw:

MORE GOVERNMENT!
MORE SELF IMPORTANCE FOR US, THE CROOKED POLITICIANS, WHO SCREWED IT ALL UP IN THE FIRST PLACE!

Or even, (A REALLY TIRED old saw):
LET US NATIONALIZE OIL AND GAS AND TAKE IT ALL OVER!! (RAH-RAH-RAH!!)

Yeah, well, that has NEVER been tried before, and has ALWAYS worked, right? That’s why Russia has Free Enterprise today. And even a flat tax…
Students of History should be able to spot the trend. No matter how badly ‘Gormless Government’ screws up, the solution is ALWAYS “More Government”. More self importance for the strutting political peacocks. More busy-body meddling. More bureaucrats. More taxes. More regulations. More distortions in the Free Enterprise Price-Supply-Demand Model. More false indicators. More propping up of inefficient (politically well connected) companies with tax payer monies.
But with the “new” MMS, the revamped Mineral Management Services, even this nutty bunch of dangerous Narcissists in Washington DC are REALLY turning over a new leaf. Now we are moving in a direction that conjures up fears in the Oil and Gas Industry of a SINISTER NEW TREND.
First, let’s examine the way the BOEMRE has come into being.
First, from “Wikinews”, on May 27,2010, I quote:

After reports that President Barack Obama has fired the director of the Minerals Management Service, Elizabeth “Liz ” Birnbaum, the Interior Department revealed that she instead resigned “on her own volition “. The resignation occurred amidst growing criticism of the federal government’s response to the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explosion and the agency’s oversight over offshore drilling.
Birnbaum, who became director in June 2009, was expected to testify before a subcommittee of the House of Representatives today with Interior Secretary Ken Salazar. She was not present when Salazar began to speak, however. Salazar said in a statement: “She is a good public servant. She resigned today on her own terms and on her own volition. I thank her for her service and wish her the very best. “
News agencies had reported that Birnbaum was forced out of office, and Obama was expected to officially announce the supposed firing later today in a news conference along with discussing an Interior Department report on the explosion. Birnbaum observed in her letter of resignation that Salazar “will be requiring three new leaders for the Office Natural Resources Revenue, the Bureau of Energy Management and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement ” as the entire Minerals Management Service is reorganized.

Hmmm…. 1) Who is thinking “scapegoat” here? 2) and who is thinking that there is nothing new with a Government changing a name, shuffling some faces, and presenting the same old dog and pony show?
If you think that regarding the second item, you might, in your defense, point to Franklin D.Roosevelt’s “alphabet soup of agencies”. FDR is Little Barry’s real hero, as opposed to his proclaimed admiration for Abraham Lincoln. (I don’t think Abraham Lincoln would have had much regard for the Village Idiot from Kenya). FDR had everybody (including himself) totally confused with a seemingly unlimited amount of very expensive agencies. Government fiefdoms, that wasted truly prodigious amounts of taxpayer money. Government experiments. So bizarre, so extreme, that different agencies were often promoting diametrically opposite policies. Just like today. But no matter, whenever public dissatisfaction became too much, there would be a quick shuffle, a change at the helm, and a new wide-eyed wonder would be introduced to the Obliging Media cameras. Nice things would be said about him or her, until such time as it was time to change the show…
Meanwhile… behind the scenes, the exact same middle level “Apparatchiks”, secure in their Ivory Towers, continued to regulate, enforce, tax and destroy, the earnings of hard working Americans.
So you could be excused for pointing to History, and stating your opinion that the current facelift of the MMS, the fancy-dancy BOEMRE (Bureaucrats Over Everything Missing Required Expertise), is just more political razzle-dazzle, and the inevitable result of having a President who is totally, hilariously, out of his depth. But has to be seen to be “doing something”, so Billy Jo Public will keep voting for him.
I think you are wrong. Stop right there.
BOEMRE is dangerous. A whole new threat to hundreds of thousands of American Oil and Gas Workers and supporting industries..
Why…?!!

Because of the emergence of a whole new, ruthless, Soviet-era methodology.

No, I don’t mean the simple fact that NO permits are being issued. The Moratorium has been lifted? Ha-ha-ha! That’s funny.
No, I don’t mean the simple fact that everything is being BOGGED DOWN in reams and reams of paper work and irrelevant minutiae.
No, I don’t mean the simple fact that they are effectively shutting down deep water drilling in the Gulf.
No, I don’t mean that there are thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of jobs on the line.
No, I don’t mean that Big Oil is seriously wondering if the risk of “Unlimited Liability” is worth the potential profits.
No, I don’t mean that drilling companies are upping their rigs and moving abroad. Far, far away. Never to return.
No, I don’t mean that thousands of hard working husbands and fathers are worried about their jobs and their families, their mortgages and their bills.

Much of all that could be (partially) excused by the usual bumbling bureaucratic incompetence. By the fear of the faceless bureaucrat for his job. The fear of being held accountable.
No, there is much more coming into play here.
Consider the stories coming in from all directions. All corners. Reports of a whole new governmental ruthlessness.
MMS Inspectors with years of experience, SUMMARILY FIRED.
Inspectors with years of experience, placed on TWO YEARS probation. TWO YEARS AHEAD. This is unheard of.
Inspectors fearful of having a cup of coffee on a platform offshore, never mind having a MEAL.
Inspectors afraid of their jobs, their futures, their retirement…. RUTHLESSLY under the thumb.
Can you imagine what it’s like trying to eat your sandwiches, on your own, after they have spent six hours on a helicopter on a hot day?
Can you imagine what it’s like, after years of trying to do your job, to be facing interminable PROBATION, subject to termination on a moment’s notice?
Can you imagine what it’s like to have the STASI Police go through your deleted emails, each and every one, Gestapo style, hunting for ANYTHING to hold over you? To use as a lever?
Can you imagine what it’s like to be questioned about the fact that you went to a youth football match, where an oil worker was also present? Despite the fact that you live in the same village, and have known each other for decades? Where now your constitutional rights?
Can you imagine what it’s like to be grilled by new bosses, who don’t know a drilling rig from a production platform? A Derrick barge from a floating casino??
Whose only claim to power over you is not knowledge, (for they have none), but the right political connections?
But who, by God, WILL sit in absolute judgment of YOU??
These, and many other stories, paint a truly frightening picture of the arrival of a new breed of BOEMRE “management”.
An over class, in charge, ruthlessly wielding its new found clout. This is George Orwell stuff. 1984. Animal Farm.
The newly arrived BOEMRE upper management is making a crazy grab for Absolute Power. Gone is any pretense to being a servant of the people. A servant of the tax payer.
The new “Apparatchiks” in BOEMRE don’t care if the Gulf deep water drilling program slows to a crawl.
They only care about their Power, their own careers, and not getting fired. There IS no ‘common sense’.

* * * * * *

I watched a goods train arrive in Warszaw, Poland. Many, many years ago. Long before their independence, when the Russians still occupied it, and the Communists were in total control of everything.
When the shops were empty, there were huge (massive) potholes in all the roads, and when a gang of us once actually drank a Hotel Bar dry. They ran out of beer…
I was there, under cover. Masquerading as a truck driver… Smuggling all kinds of dangerous stuff. Right under the noses of the ubiquitous AK-47’s.
There was fear in the air. Fear of a violent crackdown by the Communists on the Polish trade union, Solidarity. Fear of what might happen. Memories of the violence in Hungary in 1956, and Checho Slovakia under Alexander Dubcek… When Russian tanks crushed the aspirations of Freedom.
On this train, there were hundreds of car shells. They were unpainted, and rusting. But they were obviously newly manufactured. It seemed very odd. Curiously, I made enquiries. My curiosity always gets me into trouble. I discovered they were on the way to the Apparatchiks, the Bureaucrats, for INSPECTION. After being INSPECTED, they would be sent BACK two hundred miles to the factory. Meanwhile, they were RUSTING AWAY, unpainted, with zero prime, in the harsh Polish autumn weather. I asked, in amazement, if it would not be much smarter if the BUREAUCRATS would get off their bureaucratic asses and go to the FACTORY??
Somebody translated my devastating insight into Polish, for the benefit of a group of listeners. Everybody burst out laughing. In reply, they told me:
“That is too logical!”
“This is the Communist Workers’ paradise! You don’t expect efficiency!”
“The Apparatchiks rule everything from their warm offices! That is why we starve and freeze!”

* * * * * *

And here I sit, in America, the country of my dreams, the country I love, in November 2010, sadly watching the relentless march of the New Wave of Apparatchiks.
They are coming. To rule us. More and more. Because they know better. Than we do. How to spend our wages, and live our lives.
I have… some ideas about what we Oil and Gas Workers can maybe do.
In the next while, permit me to write about some suggestions I would like to make…

Horace Oilee

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Last edited by Horace Oilee on December 18, 2010, 9:03 pm


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