Tag Archives: Robber Barons

President Bush Leads the Charge for Modern Day Robber Barons!

George Bush is no Teddy Roosevelt. Instead he continues to lead the charge for the big oil companies as they pick the pockets of America’s middle class.

The Washington Post yesterday reported that “Bush Rejects Calls for Tax on Oil Profits

President Bush said Friday that taxing enormous oil industry profits is not the way to calm Americans’ anxieties about pain at the gas pump, and that his “inclination and instincts” are that major oil companies are not intentionally overcharging drivers.”

OK I know I shouldn’t say it but this sounds a little bit familiar. In 2001 the Seattle PI wrote a story entitled “Bush-backing Enron makes big money off crisis

The new president’s rejection of price controls to hold down soaring electricity costs in the Golden State reflects the views of Enron, the largest wholesaler of electricity and largest owner of natural gas pipelines in North America.
The company and its employees have given more than anyone else to Bush’s two campaigns for governor, his unsuccessful House campaign in 1978 and last year’s race for the White House, according to the watchdog Center for Public Integrity.
Enron and its employees gave $113,800 to Bush’s presidential campaign, his 10th most generous contributor; $250,000 to the Republican National Convention host committee; and $300,000 to the Presidential Inauguration Committee.

So what have the oil companies given to Bush. Actually quite a bit. Opensecrets.org notes that in 2004 Bush got $2,627,825 from oil and gas companies. Kerry got only $305,010. In 2000 Bush got $1,930,710. Gore got $142.012.

So want to guess which oil company gave the most contributions to Congressional candidates in 2004? It was the company with the most profits last year, Exxon Mobil, with $935,016. 89% of that went to Republican candidates. The next two oil companies with record profits also gave hugely. . Chevron gave 83% of its $444,509 to Republicans. Conoco Phillips gave 84 % of its $366,628 to Republicans.

So far this year the oil and gas industry has contributed some $3,863,622 to Republicans and some $786,913 to Democrats. Exxon Mobil , with some of the money you gave them at three gas pump in inflated prices, has contributed $303,212 to people running for Congress.

So why is it no surprise that on Wed. the Washington Post said that “GOP Blocks Measures Boosting Taxes on Oil Companies’ Profits”

“While Republican leaders sharply criticize soaring gasoline prices and energy industry profits, GOP negotiators have decided to knock out provisions in a major tax bill that would force the oil companies to pay billions of dollars in taxes on their profits. House and Senate tax writers have been struggling to reach an accord on separate tax bills approved last year to extend some expiring tax cuts enacted during President Bush’s first term. But House Republicans have raised strong objections to Senate-passed provisions that would raise nearly $5 billion in taxes over five years — primarily by changing arcane accounting rules that have allowed oil companies to substantially lower their tax bills, according to House and Senate tax aides familiar with the talks.”

I call Bush and the oil and gas industry Modern Day Robber Barons! Just like Enron.