Tuesday, 22 June 2010 15:04
Gulf Oil States Could Rue New Orleans Judge’s Rule On Obama’s Oil Ban
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New Orleans federal judge Martin Feldman handed the Obama administration a major defeat in its efforts to prevent future oil spills from occurring and in its efforts to contain such future calamities.

To a vast majority of Louisianans, numerous Gulf Coast government officials, and certainly the oil industry, the decision makes plenty of sense.

Actually, “plenty of sense” is an understatement.

I cannot recall hearing a single person in Louisiana say they favored the federal moratorium. Instead, the rallying cry against President Obama’s decision has been the moratorium would only hurt the very people who have been most harmed by the Gulf of Mexico spill—states like Texas and Louisiana.

The objections have been that the Obama policy would cause massive unemployment, bankruptcies, high energy costs and future oil companies to hit the waters to find less restrictive conditions.

Over the past two weeks, I have had an opportunity to travel to South Louisiana to view the spill. Yesterday, along with other media members, I accompanied Mayor Mitch Landrieu and certain US Mayors to a bay opening to the Gulf.

For miles, as far as the eye could see, were black stains upon the edges of the marshes—clear evidence that neither government nor industry has stopped the defacement of our coastline.

While the court decision is a very positive sign for so many families and industries who depend upon the oil industry, should Judge Feldman’s decision be upheld by higher courts, the major deterrence to stopping such future catastrophes will have been restrained. While we high-five the Court’s decision, let us remember that we have been on the same side in the fight with the same industry captains who deceived us about their abilities to prevent the very type of crises resulting from the Deep Horizon explosion.

Once again, our fate is in their hands and in the hands of the government who failed to keep us safe. In ordinary times, it would be highly unlikely that such an environmental disaster would ever occur again any time soon.

For the past few weeks, those wanting the curtains to fall upon Obama’s decision, have been humming the same mantra—government does not shut down airports for a lengthy period of time after one airplane crashes. So, why should it shut down an entire industry after one rig fails?

As I have said before, this is a poor analogy. Currently, many of us are saying the $20 billion that BP says it will put into escrow will not be enough to pay the total loss—not by a long shot. While the probabilities are rather meager that a similar event will occur any time soon, should it do so, we might have to quarantine all the lands around the Gulf Coast.

Not every one outside of Louisiana or Texas or other oil producing states agree with Judge Feldman. In fact, you can bet that those supporting the drilling ban will be the first ones to claim that the oil producing states and the oil companies have been only thinking of themselves in this time capsule called earth.

Obama’s drilling mandate has been supported by millions who see their futures at greater risk. In fact, the cheer is loud in many of the other states as it is despised along the coast.

In short, the battle line is drawn between those who support green energy and the others who support green produced by black oil. For now, it is a good day for those whose lives are dependent upon an oil paycheck.  but there could be a tomorrow and a new day, very soon.

However, should our good luck run dry and once again should  the bowels of the earth belch toxics down under, those in favor of the oil ban will be quick to say-- don’t come to us for a government bailout, after all, we’ve told you so

 by Stephen Sabludowsky, Publisher of

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