Friday, February 01, 2008

Daily Kos, Chevron, Bill Clinton, and Kazahkstan

Follow the bouncing ball:

So, I popped into dkos late Thursday nite and discovered a front page post by (Mr Environment/Tree Hugger Extraordinaire) Meteor Blades about massive oil company profits.

Noticeably absent: any mention of Chevron.

Now, those of you who are familiar with the history of the controversy of Chevron ads appearing at dkos may also remember kos'"it's all about the money I make" response to the fact that Chevron has abused the human rights of thousands around the world.

Running an ad doesn't imply endorsement. But, if I start rejecting ads, THEN every ad that DOES run has an implied endorsement.

And you guys aren't idiots. The advertising purity trolls seem to think that site readers are moron automatons easily manipulated by advertising. I have a higher opinion of you guys. I actually think you're quite intelligent and capable of independent evaluation of the advertising you consume here and elsewhere.

Finally, I'm not afraid of money, and I'm putting it to good use -- the abandonment of Scoop and a massive ground-up redevelopment of Daily Kos to be the ultimate blogging platform in the world, and the establishment of a corps of "fellows" to do great activism.

More details on those projects will emerge in December, but [sic] bottom line is that I won't cry if Chevron or anyone else wants to help fund the rise of a professional netroots activist class.

(I'll wait while you laugh about that "professional netroots activist class" bit.)

So, is it any wonder MB didn't mention that Chevron'a profits are up 29% more than they were a year ago. You just can't bring that up at dkos without being told one of at least 3 things by the Mighty Defenders of kos brigade:

1. This is kos' site and he has the right to make money (and who cares if he makes it by accepting major cash from big oil?)

2. We're actually fooling Chevron by taking their money (while at the same time, we're not boycotting their products or doing anything like "activism" to bring them down).

3. If you don't want to see the ads, buy a subscription to block them (ie. pay kos so you won't have to be reminded what a sell-out he is to his so-called "progressive" principles.

And what does this have to do with Bill Clinton and Kazakhstan, you ask?

Keep reading...

When "Borat-Gate" broke on dkos earlier this week, alleging that Clinton may have had a role in Canadian Frank Giustra's uranium mining deal with Kazakhstan, kossacks were outraged - outraged that Bill was dealing with a dictator from a country that had such a poor human rights record.

And that's where Chevron and kossack hypocrisy comes in yet again because this week this story also came out: Chevron venture boosts Kazakhstan oil production.

A Chevron Corp. joint venture has boosted production of oil at a field in Kazakhstan using new technology.

San Ramon-based Chevron (NYSE: CVX) has a 50 percent stake in Tengizchevroil LLP, the company doing the work in the Tengiz oil field, located on the northeast shore of the Caspian Sea in Central Asia. Chevron's partners in the venture are ExxonMobil Kazakhstan Ventures Inc., which holds a 25 percent stake; a Russian oil company, LukArco, which holds 5 percent; and the government of Kazakhstan, which owns 20 percent through its state oil company, KazMunaiGas.

Don't expect to see any outrage about that over at dkos though. That would be tantamount to blasphemy as I noted above and, as we know, kos doesn't care anyway. Just like the big oil companies, kos' concerns about human rights come second (or third or fourth) to blatant capitalist exploitation so just STFU.

To top it all off, I accidentally discovered that the city of Berkeley (where kos lives) passed a resolution last week to boycott Chevron products citing the company's "ecological destruction and involvement in human rights abuses in Angola, Burma, Ecuador and Nigeria, as well as the San Francisco Bay Area".

Oh, the irony.

You can't buy a subscription to make those facts go away, kossacks.

(crossposted at Political Fleshfeast)

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