Ben Oostdam story #602


The Email I received has some interesting information
which may or may not be (entirely) true.
Judge for yourself and let me know if it is wrong...

Dear MoveOn member,

You might have heard this: 
BP is so well connected in Washington that even
after being cited for 760 different safety
and environmental violations, the company still
got environmental waivers for the Deepwater
Horizon rig that's now destroying the Gulf.
But BP's not alone in using its DC influence.
Check out the list below of other companies' outrages,
then pass it along.And be sure to sign our new 
Fight Washington Corruption Pledge to support 3 key measures
that will protect our democracy from corporate lobbyists!


1. Exxon Mobil made billions in profits, 
and yet paid not one dime in federal income taxes in 2009.

2. The 2005 energy bill had a little known provision,
commonly called the Halliburton Loophole, which
exempted natural gas drilling from the Clean Water Act.
The result?
Water so contaminated that you can light it on fire.

3. Massey Energy was cited more than 2400 times
for safety violations in its mines, but chose not to
fix potentially lethal problems because low penalties
meant it was cheaper to simply keep paying the fines.
This spring, 29 miners were killed in an underground
explosion at a Massey mine in West Virginia.

4. Michael Taylor was the FDA official who approved
the use of Monsanto's Bovine Growth Hormone in dairy
cows (even though it's banned in most countries and
linked to cancer).
After approving it, he left the FDA—to work for Monsanto.
Until last year, when he moved back to the government-
as President Obama's "Food Safety Czar." No joke.

5. Internal Toyota documents outline how the company
was successful in limiting regulators actions in the
recalls last year -
saving hundreds of millions while the death toll
continued to climb.

6. GE and its lobbyists—including 33 former government
employees - have successfully lobbied Congress to
override Defense Department requests to cancel a 
GE contract to work on a new engine for the
Joint Strike Fighter jet.
GE will need $2.9 billion to finish the project.

7. Top executives at 9 top banks including Citibank,
Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley
paid themselves over $20 billion dollars in bonuses
just weeks after taxpayers bailed them out
to the tune of 700 billion dollars.

8. During the waning days of the Bush administration,
officials responded to a long-term lobbying campain
by pre-empting product liability lawsuits for dozens
of whole industries.
They bypassed Congress entirely and rewrote rules
ranging from seatbelt manufacturing regulations to
prescription drug safety.

9. Sunscreen manufacturers including Johnson and
Johnson and Schering-Plough, in the interest of
profits, are opposing an FDA proposal requiring
full reporting on sunscreen labels.
The New York Times just confirmed that current
SPF ratings don't even measure sun rays
that cause cancer.
10. BP—a company with a record of 760 drilling
safety and environmental violations -
was granted safety waivers in order to
operate the deepwater drilling rig that
ultimately created the worst environmental
disaster in US history.

Mad yet? Sign the pledge here and we'll pass your name on
to your member of Congress, and ask them to
Fight Washington Corruption too.


Thanks for all you do,
Ilyse, Robin, Milan, Amy and the rest of the team


1. "BP's latest plan succeeding, but may make spill worse,"
Newsweek, June 2, 2010. 

2. "GE, Exxon Paid No U.S. Income Taxes in 2009,"
 ABC News, April 6, 2010 

3. "Why is Dick Cheney Silent on the Oil Spill?," Newsweek, June 10, 2010

4. "Other Massey Mines Showed A Pattern Of Violations,"
 NPR, April 13, 2010 

5. "Monsanto's man Taylor returns to FDA in food-czar role,"
Grist, July 8, 2009 

6. "Toyota tried to cut costs on recalls,"
Los Angeles Times, February 22, 2010  

7. "GE vice chairman openly challenges Gates over F-35
fighter jet engine," The Hill, June 17, 2010 

8. "Bankers Reaped Lavish Bonuses During Bailouts,"
 The New York Times, July 30, 2009  

9. "Bush Rule Changes Curtail Rights of States, Consumers,"
Wall Street Journal, October 15, 2008 

10. "UVA Reform: It's Not PDQ,"
The New York Times, June 23, 2010 


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