Sunder and Sundry

By May 9, 2008Energy
  • Some law firms continue to use mass, automated phone calls to solicit personal-injury business. Listen to the phone message here, recorded last night at home as a firm trolls for plaintiffs who suffered health troubles after heart surgery.
  • Saturday is Pangea Day, another opportunity for raising, fund and consciousness, by the anti-global warming movement. There are sure a lot of these new celebrations, seems like, part of some Gaea-based ritual calendar. (The more radical of Southern Hemispheric activists refer to Pangea Day as Gondwana Day. It’s really caused a schism.)
  • CNN’s Christiane Amapour is featured prominently at the Pangea Day website. Isn’t she supposed to be an objective reporter? Ha, ha. Just kidding.
  • Speaking of consciousness-raising, The Washington Post’s Jeffrey Birnbaum writes about the oil and gas industry’s education/PR campaign to explain the industry more effectively, “Oil Lobby Reaches Out to Citizens Peeved at the Pump.” Good story.
  • The American Petroleum Institute has indeed been doing a very good, fact-based job of presenting the industry to the public. We liked the ads like this one explaining who owns the industry: 29.5 percent of U.S. oil and natural gas company shares are owned by mutual funds and other firms; 27 percent are owned by pension funds; and individual investors own 23 percent. So when politicians go after the oil companies, they’re also going after your pensions and IRAs.
  • Loved the reaction from self-styled consumer groups reported in the Post: “‘It’s basically deceptive advertising that dulls the natural and proper reaction of the public,’ said Mark N. Cooper, research director of the Consumer Federation of America.” Get the rhetoric right, Mark. The correct term is “false consciousness.”
  • Disclosure: Your correspondent went on a blogging tour mentioned in Birnbaum’s story — the one to Corpus Christi and the Chevron platform, Blind Faith. The latest update on the $1.4 billion project is that its operation has been delayed until the second quarter. Yes, that’s right: $1.4 billion. Thank goodness for profits.
  • Also in the Post, its weekly editorial condemning the farm bill, a good summary of the problems with the bill. The Post also reports that President Bush will veto it.
  • The API’s energy-information and media-oriented website,, is indeed very good.
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