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WH Defies Courts With 2nd Drilling Ban

From those champions of tyranny at the New York Times:

U.S. Issues Revised Offshore Drilling Ban


July 12, 2010

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar issued revised rules on Monday for a six-month moratorium on deepwater oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, replacing an earlier one that had been declared invalid by federal courts.

The revised moratorium would allow some drilling rigs to resume operating under certain conditions. To qualify, the rig’s owners must prove that they have adequate plans in place to quickly shut down an out-of-control well, that the blowout preventers atop the wells it drills have passed rigorous new tests, and that sufficient cleanup resources are on hand in case of a spill. Industry officials said it would be difficult to meet those conditions quickly, which could threaten thousands of jobs.

The original moratorium, struck down late last month by a federal judge in New Orleans, halted work on 33 wells being drilled in water greater than 500 feet deep in the gulf. Other new regulations have slowed or stopped work on dozens of other wells in shallower water.

Mr. Salazar directed federal regulators to come up with interim rules by the end of August that would clarify the steps needed to resume operations. But he made clear that most rigs would remain barred from drilling in deep water through November.

So the oil companies are supposed to meet requirements that haven’t even been written yet? That won’t be written until the end of August at the earliest? How typically Orwellian.

Not that any of this matters, since as the article notes, Mr. Salazar has ruled that most rigs will remain barred from drilling anyway.

His department characterized the moratorium issued on Monday as a refinement of the previous one that was rejected by the courts, not a retreat from it.

The two courts have not struck down the previous moratorium due to any lack of clarity about "the steps needed to resume operations." The courts ruled that the government had failed to show how just because one rig exploded, the other rigs pose an imminent danger.

Mr. Salazar’s latest moratorium does not seem to have address that point at all.

“Like the deepwater drilling moratorium lifted by the District Court on June 22, the deepwater drilling suspensions ordered today apply to most deepwater drilling activities and could last through Nov. 30,” the Interior Department said in briefing materials on the new ban

That is, through election day. Mr. Obama must please his constituents, after all. Nobody in the oil business was going to vote for him anyway.

Mr. Salazar directed Michael R. Bromwich, head of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management — the former Minerals Management Service — to conduct public hearings and discussions with industry officials to make recommendations for ways to improve the safety of deepwater drilling.

Why can’t such (useless) hearings be conducted whether there is a ban or not? Why haven’t they already begun, if they are so important?

“I remain open to modifying the new deepwater drilling suspensions based on new information,” Mr. Salazar said, “but industry must raise the bar on its practices and answer fundamental questions about deepwater safety, blowout prevention and containment and oil spill response.” …

Yes, Mr. Salazar’s open-mindness is obvious to all.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, July 13th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

2 Responses to “WH Defies Courts With 2nd Drilling Ban”

  1. proreason says:

    No end to the thug’s criminality.

    When Obama is 5 minutes from being evicted from the White House, he will be stuffing china cups down his pants.

  2. BannedbytheTaliban says:

    With all the comparisons of this moonbat to other Presidents, I always said he was most like Andrew Jackson:
    Came to power on made up lies about his opponent’s private life.
    Has a deep seated hatred for the Supreme Court and Checks and Balances.
    Was the first democrat and reason they are represented by the jackass.
    Thought he was a King.
    He had a criminal disobedience to the rule of law.
    Ruled by what he considered to be populist mandate.
    Set the seeds of secession by pitting states, namely South Carolina, rights of sovereignty against authoritative rule of the federal government during the nullification crisis.
    Had a group of unelected advisors known as the kitchen cabinet, or to Obama, Czars.

    But they do have some significant differences:
    Jackson was a competent leader and effective general.
    Jackson’s administration was the first and only time there was no national debt.
    Jackson absolved the 2nd Bank of the US, which would be equivalent to the Fed.

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