May 19, 2010

Apparently, there's a profit center in causing an ecological catastrophe:

Transocean Ltd. [..], the owner of the rig leased by BP [..] which is currently leaking oil into the Gulf of Mexico, made a $270 million profit from insurance payouts after the disaster, the Sunday Times reports.

The amount, revealed during a conference call to analysts, was made because its insurance policy for Deepwater Horizon rig was greater than the value of the rig itself, the paper reports. The Times says Transocean has already received cash payment of $401 million and the rest is due in the coming weeks.

Unbelievable. Of course, that money has been turned around as part of a nice, fat $1B dividend to stockholders.

That was a damn fast turnaround on the insurance too. Have any of the families of those killed during the explosion seen insurance payouts yet? I don't believe so.

The story behind the oil spill is one of such gross negligence and choosing shortcuts to safety in the name of profits that it's absolutely disgusting to see Transocean profit this way, when we all will be paying the costs of their negligence for years and years to come.

Meanwhile Senate Republicans have stalled legislation that would require oil companies to pay fully for their accidents. Listen to Senator Inhofe (R-Oil Companies) push for Big Oil's ability to make obscene profits over safety:

You gotta love how these "Oh noes! Obama wants us to be socialists!" Republicans have no problem with a multi-national oil company privatizing their profits and socializing their costs. Why aren't the protesters who scream about bailouts not screaming about this?

Obama made a statement expressing his frustration:

"I am disappointed that an effort to ensure that oil companies pay fully for disasters they cause has stalled in the United States Senate on a partisan basis. This maneuver threatens to leave taxpayers, rather than the oil companies, on the hook for future disasters like the BP oil spill. I urge the Senate Republicans to stop playing special interest politics and join in a bipartisan effort to protect taxpayers and demand accountability from the oil companies.”

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