Reason Morning Links: Oil Invades America, Crist Leaves the Party, Lobbyists Love ObamaCare

• A catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico reaches the U.S. coast.

• Florida governor and would-be senator Charlie Crist leaves the GOP.

• Two prominent Republican pols -- a Florida congressman and a Texas governor -- attack Arizona's immigration law; other Republicans in Texas, Georgia, and Colorado call for their own versions of the bill.

• Nine of the 10 most active medical industry lobbies supported the president's health care legislation.

• The littlest terrorist.

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  • TP||

  • Jordan Elliot||

    You posted this super early out of guilt for not having Morning Links yesterday, didn't you?

  • Johnny Longtorso||

  • Corduroy||

    I'm beginning to hate patents.

    How do you f*cking patent an exchange? How is this novel or even non-obvious? For god's sake, it's wholly dependent on the creation of regulatory law to support it.

    ^#@^*@*^#%@$$##!!

  • kinnath||

    They claim a computer-implemented method.

  • Chris||

    Celine said it best:
    "I have never voted in my life...I have always known and understood that the idiots are in the majority, so it's certain they will win."

  • Rich||

    Nice links, JL.

    The voting stuff is one of my "favorite" peeves. "If voting counted, they wouldn't let you do it."

    The patent, which covers both the "cap" and "trade" parts of Obama's top domestic energy initiation, gives Fannie Mae proprietary control .... Depending on where the Environmental Protection Agency sets arbitrary CO2 standards, that could be every company in America.

    Some mind-blowing shit, that.

  • Draco||

    "Charlie Crist leaves the GOP"

    Is there any politician on the national stage more slimy than this guy? I watched him on Fox News just a few weeks ago state that he'd never run for Senator from FL as an independent.

    I guess, like Arlen Specter, when the actual prospect of not being a Senator stared him in the face, he did what he had to do.

    I really hope Rubio can prevail in the general election. At which point Crist can wriggle back into whatever hole he originally emerged from. Maybe even get a job in the Obama administration.

  • ed||

    The Ghost is toast.

  • Father Merrin||

    The power of Crist compels you!

  • Crist||

    This is my body, overcooked.

  • ||

    Crist's face looks like seared chicken skin stretched over a frame of twigs and branches.

  • Warty||

    He might be a wicker man.

  • ||

    Crist is so bad that he's the politician most likely to start a second civil war, but he's a master of Hamilton-Fu.

  • Enyap||

    So he going to get capped in a duel.

  • ||

    Duncan Idaho|4.29.10 @ 10:34PM|#
    It's all your fault I keep dying.
    reply to this

    BakedPenguin|4.29.10 @ 11:34PM|#
    If you lived, you wouldn't have become Captain Picard. So shut up and let the blade piece your shield slowly.

    Groovus Maximus|4.29.10 @ 11:43PM|#
    Patrick Stewart played Gurney Halleck. Richard Jordan played Duncan Idaho, O Fried Aquatic Avian.

    After that, I hope BakedPenguin never shows his face on this board again. I am ashamed I called him friend.

  • robc||

    Wait? I missed a Dune thread?

  • ||

  • robc||

    Eh, okay. Not as good as my "Beer in the mindkiller" post.

  • robc||

    IS...the Bene Gesserit made me mistype it. My hand was in a box.

  • zoltan||

    My hand was in a box.

    Heh.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Oh, well I didn't know you'd take it so hard. It's good that you let me know now, though. I was about to send you your birthday present of first edition Amazing Stories magazines from 1928-1936, but now I guess I'll just donate them to a library.

    Probably Louisville University's...

  • ||

    I'm too upset right now to speak to you.

  • smallz||

    Here's a big miss. The Hill reports:
    "Democratic leaders have proposed requiring every worker in the nation to carry a national identification card with biometric information, such as a fingerprint, within the next six years, according to a draft of the measure."
    http://bit.ly/cDBiEO

  • Johnny Longtorso||

    "Democratic leaders have proposed requiring every worker in the nation to carry a national identification card with biometric information, such as a fingerprint, within the next six years, according to a draft of the measure."

    Now, you see, since they make everyone do it nation-wide, they aren't racist so it's OK.

  • Spoonman.||

    Also, Perry shot a coyote while jogging the other day. http://www.chron.com/disp/stor.....80864.html

  • Corduroy||

    Although I'm not a fan of Perry, I think this rocks. Of course, had it been anyone else, charges would have been filed.

  • West Texas Boy||

    Not in Texas... not even in Austin.

    But there would have been a LOT of wailing about "cruelty" to the coyote and the "recklessness" of carrying a weapon around... which has already been the case with Governor Hair:

    HuffPo

    FWIW, coyotes aren't good for anything but shooting. Too bad there wasn't any fence for the governor to hang the beast on, which is the appropriate custom.

  • ||

    But there would have been a LOT of wailing about "cruelty" to the coyote

    WTF is wrong with people. When did it become a bad thing to protect yourself from wild animals?

  • ||

    FWIW, coyotes aren't good for anything but shooting.

    Nonsense. They clean up roadkill and abandoned babies.

  • West Texas Boy||

    They clean up roadkill

    That's what turkey buzzards are for... and, ahem, technically you can't shoot them.

  • West Texas Boy||

    And that's a federal offense... so you can get in trouble for that.

  • Reynaldo||

    And they keep the cat population under control. So they have that going for them too.

  • Reynaldo||

    Yeah, my wife is scared of them too.

  • Ghost of Schrödinger's cat||

    from Bill Maher's twitter, retweeted by everyone yesterday: Every asshole who ever chanted "drill baby drill" should have to report to the gulf coast today for clean up duty

  • Corduroy||

    I think Bill Maher should report to Barney Frank's love den for clean-up duty.

  • Atanarjuat||

    Corduroy: LOL. Also, my 3 year old likes to read about you at bedtime.

  • ed||

    I hated Bill Maher when he was funny.

  • CaptainSmartass||

    When was that?

    Though Religulous is one of the better documentaries I've seen recently.

  • ||

    Religulous was good, i just wish someone less-smarmy had done it...

  • ed||

    When was that?

    Early '80s I think.

  • mr simple||

    That's retarded. So anyone who ever has used a car or bus or goods delivered by truck or used plastic, etc., should have to go clean up this spill. How else does he expect us to get the oil for gasoline and its byproducts? Bill Maher is a retarded monkey cunt.

  • ed||

    And a fascist to boot. I don't doubt for a moment that if he had the power, he would arrange for your transportation to the death beaches.

  • MatTrue||

    I can't stand retarded monkey cunts like Bill Maher. They happily live, no, thrive off the fruits of capitalism and then hurl demagogic remarks at it when something goes awry. OPPORTUNISTIC retarded monkey cunt!

    Someone should ask Bill Maher why he chooses to live in the land of assholes. Oh that's right, they make him money. And I'm sure he feels justified making all that cash. Lambasting capitalism benefits society way more than drilling for oil!

  • MNG||

    I don't think you have to be anti-capitalist to not want possibly calamatious oil drilling in your backyard (or gulf or bay as it might be).

  • ||

    Nope, just a bright red hypocrite or luddite.

  • MatTrue||

    The point is that it isn't in the retarded monkey cunt's or your backyard. It's in the "racist" bible thumpin republican south's backyard. I doubt Bill Maher spends much time there. It's NIMBY Santa Monica/Santa Barbara facists like him that subject the people along the gulf to a more concentrated amount of drilling and its associated risks.

    But that's how we've powered our industry for the last 50 or so years. The same industry that produces profits large enough to be invested in life saving technologies that benefit every single human being on this planet. You and Maher are free not to partake.

  • MNG||

    I would think people with such over the top respect for property rights would have some sympathy for NIMBY. Someone can ruin the purpose or livability of your property with what they do on your adjacent property. Being concerned about that ahead of time is hardly fascism.

  • ||

    I doubt that. My communitarianism would sympathize with NIMBY's (I'd rather not have crackhouses next to me), but my libertarianism reminds me that I do not own that property and therefore have no decision making power over it.

  • MNG||

    Even if it raises the risk of calamity for your property or inteference with your enjoyment of it? Incredible.

  • ||

    Like I said, "I" would not like certain things around me, especially that which could damage my property, but things have to exist somewhere if people enjoy (A) their products or (B) their services. I enjoy having a car and being able to get to destinations quickly, therefore I should temper my dislike of the potential for disaster to my property that oil companies could create with my desire to continue consuming oil.

    Now, if I pretend that wind, solar, nuclear , etc exist as complete substitutes for oil in both energy density and portability, my dislike of oil companies risks becomes a concrete action to remove those risks. However, in the real world the above technologies have not come close to surpassing the effectiveness of oil, therefore I have to realize that although I risk calamity on my property, I have to accept some risk to be able to travel the way I like.

  • ||

    Being concerned about that ahead of time is hardly fascism.

    I'd say "solving" problems before they exist could be considered fascism. It's not like we have Courts or anything, to negotiate settlements between conflicting property interests on a case yb case basis.

  • ||

    I don't know how many times I will have to say this before it sinks in with the irrational wing of the envoronmental movement.

    All energy sources have some adverse environmental effects. The extremely difficult task is to balance the harm to the environment (bad) and the economic benefits (good).

    This is called cost benefit analysis and it is not a new concept. How much oil spill pollution (bad) are we willing to accept for the economic benefits associated with extracting petroleum off shore (good). If it's only a gallon a year, we'd all say go for it. If one of these disasters happened every day in the gulf we'd all agree to shut them all down.

    I heard this being called the worst environmenal disaster in four years so we can safely say this kind of fuckup is not that common. We can also safely predict that the owners and opoerators of this rig are going to take a huge monetary hit over this, tilting the scale a bit towards more caution and safety features.

    Argue that the fines should be higher and I might be inclined to agree with you. Argue that this in some way invalidates the wisdom off exploiting off shore oil resources and I'll just consider you a dumbshit not worth engaging in debate.

  • ||

    This.

  • Atanarjuat||

    Obviously Maher is a court jester, but here in north Florida, the debate about offshore drilling has gone on for a while in local papers and such. The main point of those who oppose it is that a single spill would ruin the white sand beaches that currently generate billions in tourist spending and are in a way the keystone of the local economy. Personally, I was leaning towards allowing drilling because it was presented as a safe, modern technology. This accident blows that argument out of the water, and will probably keep drilling from happening here for decades, and ironically, may tarnish our coastline without the economic benefits of expanding oil exploration.

  • ed||

    Nobody has ever said that drilling is 100% safe. There isn't a single method of creating energy on a large scale that doesn't involve risk. The only people who demand an impossible, risk-free energy policy are the obstructionist environmentalists. Human scum like Maher who crow, "I told you so!" give natural scum a bad name.

  • MNG||

    If you are asking me about the Chesapeake Bay I'm afraid I'd like 100% safe please. Can you imagine the devastation to my state and the surrounding ones if this were to happen there?

    Currently the chances of this happening are 0%.

  • ed||

    Crawl back in your hole, then.

  • MNG||

    My hole? I just don't want to raise the chance my local natural treasure will be marred for what appear to be fairly meager savings at the gas pump (and fairly spectacular profits for the oil company).

  • ed||

    Gulf oil drilling has a .001% spill rate over its long history.
    Still not low enough for you?

  • MNG||

    Aks the LA fishermen if it's low enough for them...

    Even low risks of highly calamtious events can be enough to warrant avoidance.

  • ||

    So, you avoid flying and driving, then?

  • MNG||

    I drive and fly. You have a point?

  • ||

    Oh, just asking, since the risk of a highly calamitous event while driving or flying is greater than the risk of an oil drilling spill.

    I'm trying to gauge your definition of acceptable risk, although I imagine you'll consider scale in your answer.

  • ed||

    Do those fishermen use fossil fuels in their engines? It's hard to shrimp in a rowboat. Have a nice day.

  • MNG||

    I imagine they do. Does that mean that they must want drilling near their backyard?

    By that logic we should all want coal plants adjacent to the properties we live in. I mean, don't you use electricity!

  • ||

    You don't seem to understand or appreciate risk. Its understandable. You don't understand the laws of thermodynamics, so I could hardly expect you to understand or appreciate how you avoid freezing every winter.

  • ||

    Aks the LA fishermen if it's low enough for them...

    You mean the ones who reap the benefits of the fish that collect around platforms? Oh, I forgot, off-shore oil drilling= bad.

  • MNG||

    Yeah Gill, the fishermen are going to make out like bandits here.

    What Panglossian nonsense you libertarians spout from time to time.

  • ||

    One wonders why you continue to subject yourself to it. Wouldn't Mother Jones be a much more comfortable site for you? I assume your Don Quixote instinct is just strong enough to keep tilting at our windmills.

  • MNG||

    Only fools sit around with like minded people agreeing all the time. That would be like an intellectual circle jerk.

  • ||

    That does sound like an accurate description of mother jones. Atleast you see some light.

  • Invisible Finger||

    Ask LA fishermen how low a price they'll take for their wares when the transport costs reduce the ability to ship their goods wherever they can get the highest price.

    There is risk in doing nothing just as much as there is risk in doing something. The knee-jerk reaction to "do nothing" is as dim-witted as the knee-jerk reaction to "do something".

  • ||

    I suppose the fact that hundreds of cargo ships, including many oil and LNG tankers, pass through the Bay in the shipping lanes is lost on ol' Massah Nice Guy.

  • ||

    Can you imagine the devastation to my state and the surrounding ones if this were to happen there?

    So there'd be like 5 crabs left instead of 10?

    Also not surprised the MNG lives in We-Love-Statism Maryland. If he lived in Bethesda, well that would just be icing on the cake.

  • Atanarjuat||

    Well, there have been numerous editorials over the last few months implying that there would be no harm to our coastline. The well's shutoff valve was supposed to prevent spills like this from happening, but apparently that didn't work in this case. And locally, many have allied with environmentalists against drilling, especially those with an economic stake in tourism or commercial fishing.

  • ||

    A serious review of the safety systems on all platforms is going to happen. Drilling for oil in the US will become more expensive and you'll pay more for gas you buy at the pump. Its the nature of these things.

  • ||

    And that fucker should be paying the people of California the wealth they deliberately keep in the ground so rich pricks can have "unspoilt" beach front property. What a tool.

  • MNG||

    I think it's a point well made. Below us here in the fair state of Maryland the rubes in the state of my birth are agitating for drilling off the shore. This kind of thing should give people pause. I haven't been to Va Beach in quite a while, but if the surf there were black with oil I'd be even less inclined to go there...

  • ||

    Don't worry, when you can't afford to travel there any more you won't have to worry what the beach looks like.

  • MNG||

    Yeah, we are so near that poin, and your remedy would so delay that point, we should ignore the introduction of potentially catastrophic conseqeunces to our local resources...Sheesh.

  • ||

    You have no idea. One day you'll long for the day you merely had to worry about oil washing up on your shore.

  • MNG||

    "One day you'll long for the day you merely had to worry about oil washing up on your shore."

    I'm afraid this kind of insanity cannot be caricatured...

  • ||

    And yet its not insane to think that spending more money will reduce America's deficit. Got it.

    What's the verdict on tossing feces? Is that still insane?

  • ||

    I am afraid this kind of stupidity cannot be caricatured. You really don't understand MNG that sometimes there are just degrees of risk and bad choices? it is just astounding how liberalism slowly destroys ones ability for critical thought.

  • Chris||

    More from Lawrence Durrell in 1947:

    "The things you were telling me, Mr. Truman, about the growth of the state as a concept, and the beginning of social conscience - all this is only a detour, a long and vicious detour through the material amenities towards a happiness that will continue to elude men just so long as they continue to elude themselves and each other."

  • ||

    I should have known better than to read the comments after the piece on the 3-year old "terrorist suspect".

    I could have gone all day without feeling that sort of despair.

  • Mike Laursen||

    Which comment(s) in particular are causing you despair?

    The comments seemed to be all over the board, including at least one person who made the obvious joke about all three year olds being terrorists.

  • ||

    A selection:

    Perhaps if his parents had led by example -- not doing something illegal -- he would have not been in this situation. BAD PARENTS. Perhaps the kid should be taken away from them.

    and

    Terrorists kill other peoples children exactly the age of his son without a second thought.
    If the father is a terrorist and has a three year old kid with him then who's fault is the whole thing in the first place.

    I suppose I was mostly disappointed that these comments came from the US.

    The comments are all over the board, I was more disappointed by the ratings.

    I know exactly how my three year-old would have responded to this, and it wouldn't be pretty. Must just be my mother-bear instinct at work.

  • ||

    including at least one person who made the obvious joke about all three year olds being terrorists.

    Damn, i guess most parent's just don't have time to comment on stuff; I'd have expected that sentiment to be the consensus ;)

  • ||

    Which is why you should *never*, EVER read the comments at MSM sites.

    It makes you weep for humanity. It does, however, remove any doubt of how we have managed to fuck ourselves so thoroughly.

  • Brett L||

    You know why Texas will prevail in the long run?
    "The Arizona law has been hailed by conservatives as long overdue and two Texas lawmakers have said they'll introduce similar immigration measures when the Texas Legislature meets next."

    The Texas Lege next meets in 2011. By which time the hyperventilation will have blown over.

  • zoltan||

    And of course, statists here are agitating for more frequent Congressional sessions. Ugh.

  • Mike M.||

    Al and Tipper Gore snap up Montecito-area villa.

    The couple spent $8,875,000 on an ocean-view villa on 1.5 acres with a swimming pool, spa and fountains, a real estate source familiar with the deal confirms. The Italian-style house has six fireplaces, five bedrooms and nine bathrooms.

  • Atanarjuat||

    You could probably get good money for a photo showing smoke coming out of all six chimneys simultaneously.

  • Mike M.||

    I was lurking for a bit on the lefty sites yesterday where they were discussing this, and even most of them sounded like they've had it with fat Albert's incredible hypocrisy.

  • ||

    The Texas Lege next meets in 2011. By which time the hyperventilation will have blown over.

    By which time the federal government will have dissolved all state legislatures and imposed martial law, you mean.

  • Brett L||

    Perhaps. Maybe we should make it unconstitutional to legislate in even years at the Federal level as well.

  • ||

    Its a good start, but lets make it something more like "legislation may take place on every 40th blue moon" or "for 5 minutes every 25 years."

  • ||

    gives Fannie Mae proprietary control

    What could possibly go wrong?

  • MNG||

    The three year old terrorist story is the one that gets me most today.

    I guess he's lucky he wasn't arrested by American law enforcement, they probably would have shot him or something...

  • Jersey Patriot||

    Nonsense. We don't shoot terrorists, we torture them. We shoot wedding parties and dogs. Try to keep up.

  • ||

    Small threadjack for all you small business and self-employed:

    In a recent summary, tax information firm RIA notes the types of transactions covered by the new 1099 rules:

    The 2010 Health Care Act adds “amounts in consideration for property” (Code Sec. 6041(a) as amended by 2010 Health Care Act §9006(b)(1)) and “gross proceeds” (Code Sec. 6041(a) as amended by 2010 Health Care Act §9006(b)(2)) to the pre-2010 Health Care Act categories of payments for which an information return to IRS will be required if the $600 aggregate payment threshold is met in a tax year for any one payee. Thus, Congress says that for payments made after 2011, the term “payments” includes gross proceeds paid in consideration for property or services.

    That's right, starting in 2011 you are required to issue Form 1099 to everyone you pay over $600 to. (utilities, auto lease, etc...)

  • robc||

    Yep, saw that. Insane. Abso-frickin-lutely insane. That may be more paperwork than a VAT tax.

  • West Texas Boy||

    I had not seen this and it's abso-fucking-lutely insane.

    These dicks have NEVER run a business, they court the votes of people who have NEVER run a business either (and are usually ignorantly jealous of the boss), and they have unlimited resources to do whatever they feel is necessary to do their own jobs.... so they just throw regulations around like candy. Fuck.

    Jesus Fucking Christ.

    A 1099 to the landlord? A 1099 to the electric company?

    Shit.

  • ||

    Furthermore:

    In order to file all these 1099s, you’ll need to collect the necessary information from all your service providers. In order to comply with the law, you would have to get a Taxpayer Information Number or TIN from the business. If the vendor does not supply you with a TIN, you are obligated to withhold on your payments.


    Try withholding federal tax from your utility compny because they didn't timely supply you with the required information.

  • Invisible Finger||

    Another nail in the coffin for small business.

    If the left hates big business so much, why is everything they do advantageous to it?

  • West Texas Boy||

    Because it's easier to control people when you are dealing with a small number of employers - that you can bully and mandate - than it is to deal with with millions of moms and pops.

    I've thought about this one a lot. It's all about centralized control. That's all corporatism/socialism/jacobism, or whatever you want to call it, is.

  • ||

  • ||

    I don't know whether to be outraged over the theft of private property, or cheered by a score against The Man for once.

    Nah, who am I kidding. Awesome.

  • MNG||

    Spill, baby spill!

    Not quite the same ring to it...

  • ||

    MNG,
    Go upthread for a rational environmentalist's take (mine) on the oil spill in the gulf. It doesn't have a lot of big words or difficult concepts so you should be able to understand it without extensive tutoring.

  • Mike M.||

    I'll bet you get around Montgomery County in a rickshaw too.

  • ||

    Benefits of oil exploration > risks of drilling. The risk is never zero. But neither is the benefit.

  • ||

    Statistically, these things are quite rare, amirite?

  • ||

    Yes, thank the FSM.

  • Tony||

    But surely the company responsible for the spill should pay for every cent of damage it causes, right? Admittedly it's hard to put a price on endangered species.

    This seems to be a perfectly capitalist arrangement. And now when you finally admit that burning that oil and releasing its byproducts into the atmosphere also impose costs on other people, those eyesore windmills don't seem like such a bad investment. If capitalism worked correctly the benefits of oil exploration would be far exceeded by the costs.

  • ||

    Every cent is always a malleable thing. Exxon paid every last dime of "compensatory damages" the court assigned it for the Valdez spill, but fought tooth and nail on the "punitive damages" the court assigned it because they believed they should not have to pay a random amount of money to people solely because they screwed up (pay what you owe, not what they want)

  • ||

    BP is responsible for this mess, they should pay. And the costs of exploration is not lower than the benefit. There is probably a trillion dollars worth of oil under the gulf. And this spill is a fraction of that. And an even smaller fraction of all of the oil that has been and will be taken from off shore drilling.

  • ||

    Keep in mind that there will be plenty of previously unsuccessful shrimpers and layabouts looking to make money off of this, as well as angry politicians batting about random figures of money they feel should be used to punish BP regardless actual damages. Even if BP does all the right things, they will be drawn and quartered in public opinion (just as Exxon was). All I can say is, it may be that this could have happened to any of the offshore operators and they better thank their deity of choice it didn't happen to them.

  • ||

    YEah. But BP didn't have an automatic shut off valve on the rig. Apparently, most of the other rigs do. If that is true, then they have no one but themselves to blame.

  • ||

    1. This was Transocean's rig just to be clear. BP provided drilling engineers, but Transocean owned and operated the rig with their crew (BP employeed something like 16 of the 126 ppl on board).

    2. I'm not clear as to what automatic shutoff valve is being referred to. There definitely would have been valving in place for the drilling and cementing, but the BOP's (Blow out preventers) are the safety device which are used if the well is lost control of. They were in place, but for some reason, are not functioning properly. This is a serious issue, but only the investigation will be able to reveal where the flaw is.

  • ||

    From the WSJ this morning.

    "The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that the doomed rig lacked a remote-control shutoff device commonly used in other major offshore oil-producing nations."

  • ||

    Once again, I'm not sure what the WSJ is talking about so I cannot determine whether or not that had any affect on what happened.

  • Brett L||

    Read the whole article. They lacked an acoustic shut-off valve, but other auto-offs failed as well. Apparently, it was a catastrophic failure of all systems, including supposed fail-safes. You can't exactly plan for those in advance.

  • MNG||

    I'm a little puppy. See how adorable I am?

    -pees on carpet-

    ARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARF

  • ||

    MNG pees on your leg, not the carpet.

  • ||

    The 2010 Health Care Act adds et c

    The more I find out about what's in it, the better I like it!

  • ||

    You're a tax attorney?

  • ||

    Nine of the 10 most active medical industry lobbies supported the president's health care legislation.

    Way to go Barack! Sticking it to the special interests like you and Pelosi did.

    Wait till they all see their obscene profits tumble as this clusterfuck of a bill carefully considered legislation takes effect. You sure fooled those Wall Street yokels. We common folks will have the last laugh as the health care savings roll in.

    Right?

  • replica watches||

    good post

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