News Deposit/Open Thread

link and discuss news articles here...or ask a question/say what's on your mind.  (some links already under the fold).
The Sept 1 shut in capacity is 90.43% for oil and 78.66% for gas,

I wonder if the reason the rescue effort is fouled up is that the Feds are deliberately diverting military assets to assessing/fixing the damage to the Gulf oil infrastructure?  I think the damage is at least as bad as the "insider" claims, if not worse.  If you think about it, given the reports of how pipelines have sort of come on line, that HH is apparently online, the LOOP online, etc., how could people get to these areas when access roads are supposedly washed out?  Who is providing the manpower to work them?  I think our military is there in a BIG way, and they're freaking out now, because what's going on in NO is a direct result of this neglect.

I'm not trying to be heartless, I am ENRAGED that we're not trying to save people in NO.  But I'm sure the interests of Wall St. and oil come before those in NO in the minds of the administration.

The military is actually commandeering oilfield helicopters for recue missions, per an email I got from J. You have it backwards. The government is grabbing whatever it needs from the oil companies.

As for repairs - the oil companies get to these platforms by boat from the western coast of Louisiana and the Texas coast, which are undamaged. And by helicopter until today...

Government never overtly helps with the oilfield - at best some tax incentives. They have no expertise - their energy people are the guys who generally didn't fit within the private oil industry or came straight out of college and into a government job. Some went to work for the government for the benefit package.

The military doesn't have the expertise to do anything within the oilfield, and the private oil companies would resist any overture of help for that reason alone.

Just to let you know, oil companies right now are mainly concerned with making sure their employees are OK.  Secondly they are trying to figure out how to make sure their employees have housing and immediate assistance.  Third, they are doing damage assessment on their facilities and trying to figure out how to get them back up. As far as I know, the military is not involved with any of this.  I know this because I just came from a meeting from my company covering these issues.
Bubba, where are those evacuated GOMEX workers?
I need some help from one of you who knows this industry about how gas stations raise their prices:
A local station gets a truck load maybe twice a week, right?  Do they pay for that fuel at that time?  If they do, how does it work that they raise prices on fuel they've already bought?
I'm wondering if there is a consignment system that we aren't aware of... maybe they don't pay for the fuel in the ground until they sell it.  There's got to be something I don't understand here - my inclination is to believe the local operator who says "I have no choice" about raising prices.
...but there's a windfall somewhere.  Where is it?
A few years ago, I stepped up to the counter at a Chevron station to pay for gas I had just pumped. The owner said I was lucky I had already pumped it because the company had just sent him a message instructing him to raise the prices. I suppose some owners get to set their own retail price, but apparently others just get to do what they are told.
Re: FEMA and Pat Robertson

Might as well put this here. has this article relating that FEMA is directing donations to Pat Robertson!!!!

For the memory-impaired, I'll remind you that he called for the assassination of Hugo Chavez some days back.

Anyway, I looked at this report and to my surprise? I found that on the FEMA Volunteer or Make a Donation page we find, listed 3rd after the Red Cross and something called America's Second Harvest, a link to Operation Blessing, an organization created by Pat Robertson's 700 Club.

I do not want that ignorant piece of **** involved in any way with relief for New Orleans. I'm sure he'll find some way to make money from it and get the "Good News" out. This is outrageous.
Do you think Katrina marked the point at which America passed Peak Gasoline?  If some of the refinery capacity takes a long time to bring back online, it could be that the US market never again enjoys the same level of fuel supply that it did a week ago.
I have to vent here about what a HOLE has become.

The Katrina comments have the idiots in high dudgeon. Anyone who doesn't see the world through rose-colored classes is pounced on with ad hominem attacks.

Also, under another username, I was castigated by a moderator for posting a graphic image that made a clear point, yet they let comments like this stand:

Well would be nice but the blondes are being raped and killed by the blacks from the Superdome to the streets. And by the way had it been white people the city would be pulling together.
Another argument against anonymous posting.
with anonymous posts the regiestered users should be able to flag it as bad and if it get 10 flags then it should be deleted like craigslist