Tuesday, July 15, 2008

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Friday, July 11, 2008

Is Battlestar Galactica's Col. Tigh modeled on McCain?

Others have noticed that John McCain bears an uncanny resemblance to Col. Tigh on BATTLESTAR GALACTICA.

McCain is the one on the--ah hell, I'm not sure. But one of them is him.

However, the resemblance is more than just skin-deep.


Both are cranky old men, still working long after many of their peers have retired or died.

McCain was a POW who was tortured during the Vietnam War. Col. Tigh was a POW tortured by the Cylons and had his eye plucked out.

When McCain was released from Vietnam, he divorced his loyal first wife for a statuesque, blond hottie and has children with her. When Col. Tigh was released by the Cylons, he killed his loyal wife for betraying the resistance to secure his freedom. Later, Tigh hooks up with a statuesque, blond Cylon hottie and impregnates her.

John McCain verbally abused his hottie wife, calling her a "cunt" in public and saying she plasters on her make up like a trollop after she joked about his thinning hair. Col. Tigh verbally and physically abused his Cylon hottie because of his own conflicted feeling about being a Cylon himself.

John McCain thought he was in line for the presidency in 2000, only to be upstaged by the largely untested son of a former president. Col. Tigh took temporary command of Galactica only to be upstaged by Apollo, the largely untested son of the Admiral.

Most importantly, Col. Tigh thought he was a loyal colonial officer only to find out in his old age that he was one of his lifelong nemesis, the Cylons. If others knew his identity, his heroic record would be forgotten. John McCain thought he was a maverick, but finds himself a tool of the worst, most anti-democratic, corrupt, and dangerous president in American history, a man who insulted McCain's wife, his child, and his heroic military service. If the public realizes the degree to which he is a puppet of the same moneyed interests as Bush, his heroic record would be forgotten.

Col. Tigh has a drinking problem, and if I was John McCain, I would too.

I don't think McCain should be president, but since there are multiple copies of each human-looking Cylon, maybe McCain has a future as a guest star on BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, playing Col. Tigh's Cylon brother.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Can Obama end our cancerous slavery to big oil dictated foreign policy?

The US Gas Garrison by Michael T. Klare has a good summary of the problem:

The Carter Doctrine, established 28 years ago, put the US military in service of assuring the nation’s regular supplies of imported oil. This has near-bankrupted the US and corrupted the military, yet left the US insecure in energy sources and globally loathed. The time has come to demote petroleum and stand down the troops.


In this brief summary, Michael T. Klare has handed the Democrats a bullet-proof issue for the fall (because it happens to be true).

I will add one more element to this: Bush is endangering the at least defensible goal of energy security with one that is not--forcing the Iraqis to give up most of the profits of their oil to big oil companies in the Hydrocarbon Law.

A possible result of this is that once our military is further weakened or we withdraw, Iraq could cancel contracts and laws they were coerced into signing, and cut off our oil as happened with the Saudi embargo in the 70s when they were mad at us for backing Israel in the Yom Kippur War, and when America lost any diplomatic influence over Iran after the revolution because we had backed the oppressive Shah for decades, and the Shah was installed because the OIL COMPANIES asked us to get rid of Iran's democratically elected president who wanted to nationalize their oil.

More recently, the demonization in the US press of the democratically elected Hugo Chavez of Venezuela has far more to do with how he treats oil companies than how he treats his own people. Bush backed one failed coup against him, but if he succeeds at another or has Chavez assassinated, the results will be still more disruption of the oil supply.

The greed of oil companies too often conflicts rather than dovetails with our needs for access and relatively low prices for oil.

If Obama is the candidate for change, this is the change we need most. Abraham Lincoln freed African Americans from slavery--will our first African American president free all of us from an oil industry that robs us not only of our wealth at the gas pumps, but our tax dollars to fight wars to seize oil reserves, and the lives of idealistic young soldiers who fight in those wars?

Oil Theft Motive for Iraq War resources

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Gallup poll: Financial "elitist" is McCain

A favorite dig of the now defunct Hillary campaign and likely of McCain's once Karl Rove kicks into high gear is that Obama is some kind of elitist.

However, John McCain is the one with the back of the financial elite according to this Gallup poll, and Obama has the lead with people struggling to make ends meet.

People must be figuring out that the GOP is the party of Wall Street at the expense of Main Street. For all their talk of family values, patriotism, and religion, they would send your job to Bangladesh in a heartbeat, and if you are lucky enough to keep a job, they'll rob your paycheck by not regulating health insurance companies or checking the power of oil companies to jack up gas prices.

The evidence is pretty clear if you look at after tax income in the last couple of decades we have been guided by Republican economics:

The Republicans love the wealthy like their own family, and love the rest of us the way a lion loves a gazelle.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Iraqis say NO to profit sharing with big oil

The Iraqi oil ministry says big oil companies are dragging their feet about finalizing short term contracts because they want part of the profits of the oil, not just service contracts. It's a little like your gardener demanding you put his name on the deed to your house in exchange for mowing your lawn.

The Iraqis aren't stupid about this and said no.

Profit sharing is what the big oil companies demanded in the Hydrocarbon Law too, but the Iraqis are unlikely to ratify it with that in, given their hard line here.

It would be ironic if after a three trillion dollar war, over four thousand US soldiers dead, and over a million Iraqis dead, the oil companies got the same deal they would likely have gotten before the war.

Ironically, it is likely that the Iraqis are more eager to ramp up production than the major big oil companies. Before the war, Oil & Gas Journal said they were concerned that once the sanctions came off Iraq, they would pump too much and drive prices down. They would probably prefer to be in the driver's seat so they could set the pace to pad their profits rather than help out the Iraqis--or us.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Iraq offers oil contracts

Hussein al-Shahristani, the oil minister, told a news conference that the deals had not yet been concluded as the companies wanted a share of the profits.

"We did not finalise any agreement with them because they refused to offer consultancy based on fees as they wanted a share of the oil," he said.

Shahristani stressed that Iraq needed the services of experienced companies to realise the potential of its reserves but added that it was not ready to do so at any price.

"It is not possible for Iraq which has large oil reserves to stay at the current level of production. Iraq should be the second or the third source of oil exportation," the minister said.

"We went to these global companies and asked them to offer us consultancy but they will have no privileges or will not get a share of oil."



UPDATE: Greg Muttitt at Hands Off Iraqi Oil has a less optimistic and more knowledge opinion of the current contract negotiations.