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munga
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This just scratches the surface.
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cherrypoptart
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I was just about to post that, was looking for the story as I heard it on the news.

From your link:

Gov't officials investigated for sex, gifts


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Sep 10, 6:26 PM (ET)

By DINA CAPPIELLO

WASHINGTON (AP) - Government officials handling billions of dollars in oil royalties partied, had sex with and accepted golf and ski outings from employees of energy companies they were dealing with, federal investigators said Wednesday.

The alleged transgressions involve 13 former and current Interior Department employees in Denver and Washington. Their alleged improprieties include rigging contracts, working part-time as private oil consultants, and having sexual relationships with - and accepting golf and ski trips and dinners from - oil company employees, according to three reports released Wednesday by the Interior Department's inspector general.

The investigations reveal a "culture of substance abuse and promiscuity" by a small group of individuals "wholly lacking in acceptance of or adherence to government ethical standards," wrote Inspector General Earl E. Devaney, whose office spent more than two years and $5.3 million on the investigation.

"Sexual relationships with prohibited sources cannot, by definition, be arms-length," Devaney said.

-------------------------------------------

My suggestion as Acting Deputy Attorney General and Chief Counsel for the Department of Energy (imaginary) is that ALL contracts must be reviewed and ANY that have connections to these types of improprieties must be renogatiated in the harshest possible terms. The news report I heard mentioned that there was no proof that taxpayers had lost money as a result of these improper relationships. As should be expected, I scoff at that assertion.

Of course I always knew that the contributions the oil and gas industry makes to political campaigns reap huge profits for oil companies in money our government negotiators leave on the negotiating table, but I hadn't realized, though I'm not surprised really, that our government employees were literally in bed with oil industry representatives.

This cuts across party lines as we surely had this same type of arrangement under Clinton as well as Bush. This has been going on a long time. Who will put a stop to it?

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munga
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uh ok. Well, tell me, where the contracts WON unfairly because of maybe these folks were all "friends".... hm?

they need a shovel to handle this stuff.

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munga
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WHO WILL PUT A STOP TO IT?

MCCAIN- by Climbing in Bed with the Nuclear Financiers, silly!

Which is so obviously corrupt it doesn't need discussion. The nuclear facilities have been paid-off for years, but for some reason.... they never ever lower their price.... if they were government financed, why would that be? Could it possibly be because Americans can't figure out that energy is a commodity that can be inflated with speculation, maybe?

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LoneSnark
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What people charge for what they sell has nothing to do with their costs. The price is set by the market, some businesses will lose money and never pay back their creditors, some businesses will make profits from day one paying off their creditors early.

As such, that the nuclear plants are paid off is irrelevant: the owners must charge what the market will bear, otherwise their charity will produce shortages down the road.

All that said, the Government sucks and should put all public lands up for auction.

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munga
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LS-

Please don't be silly LS. What should be charged, if it was funded by the government, is the least charge, right? Should the government be making money off a monopoly energy facility? Or should the government be having the facility run, and leaving the money with the people, inasmuch as it is owned by the public. But nooooooo the fact is that the operators are the ones making the money, on facilities that were financed by the people which are now paid off.

THE OWNERS ARE THE PEOPLE if the PEOPLE FINANCED it, no matter who is technically in operatorship, and they shouldn't be able to use "market" as their ****en excuse.

[ September 10, 2008, 10:34 PM: Message edited by: munga ]

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cherrypoptart
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> munga

> Please don't be silly LS. What should be charged, if it was funded by the government, is the least charge, right?

How about a compromise?

The government charges market rates with surpluses going to the Treasury, just like the Postal System was supposed to operate. Surpluses could also be reinvested into the industry to improve infrastructure, service, and to expand as demand and market forces warrant.

The entire industry would NOT be nationalized, but there would be competition in exactly the same way the USPS competes against FedEx and UPS.

That's how I would work renewable energy.

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munga
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Orrrrrrrr........


the government could lower the cost per MW for each nuclear facility which, via the BTU all-in conversion would bring down the cost of gasoline at your fuel pump in a big way.

I like that one better.

Renewables can finance themselves, if and when we are given equal access, that has been the choke hold. No shortage of money, just a lot of corrupt republicans and financiers.

And the other thing that I like less about your idea is that you are basically saying, "let's let government finance for renewables" when I'm saying, "let's let government finance for NO ONE" because it is exactly the fact that the debt paper on facilities is GOVERNMENT issue that government is co-opted into protecting monopolies. When I use government money to finance a 100 MM facility, but next year another technology comes along that is 2x as good as mine, the government MUST do what it can to prevent the financing of the new guy BECAUSE it holds the debt paper on mine. I don't think we need to fight fire with fire, we need to fight fire with water. We renewables can handle it better this way: Equal access to capital for interim-construction loans, mandated commercial Take Out- permanent loans.

[ September 11, 2008, 06:52 PM: Message edited by: munga ]

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FiredrakeRAGE
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While it sounds like there was a whole bunch of bad (even illegal) behavior going on, I do not know that I would classify any sexual relationship with a oil-company employee as an illicit affair.

After all, when you're working for the dept. of the interior, half the people you work with are private-industry counterparts. The possibility of something happening in an innocent manner is pretty high.

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Storm Saxon
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Given the number of energy discussions on the forum initiated by munga, I'm not sure where this should go. So, it might as well go here.
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munga
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Yep.

They covered the Enron Loophole (low margin on options in energy)

Trading = demand = higher price, they are trading their own product to MAKE it a higher price.

Last, they covered the prime mechanism.... and folks, wake up please, guess where lots of those hedges are written from.... they are written from you UTILITY company which is why they go to Washington and point fingers at each other.

-----exactly the points we made with Amy Meyers Jaffe just after he testimony at the House Global Warming and Energy Special Committee and with Congressman Childer's point man.

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