BP: Beyond Petroleum My Ass

bp.gifEspecially in recent weeks, with their focus of going more and more to the left (on purpose! Can you believe it?!?!?!), I haven't had too many mornings where I'm riding the train to the city and I find myself agreeing with the Sun-Times and the Chicago Democrats. Today, however, I was pleasantly surprised. First, there's this article about Alderman Ed Burke putting the screws to BP for attempting to dump more toxins into our Lake Michigan. The environment should be an issue that cuts across party lines. The GOP should seize this opportunity to stand up to big business. The Republicans can win on the environment if we want to. We should be winning on the environment, or at least, taking it off the table, should we? Outside of Congressman Mark Kirk, where's the GOP?
Chicago's most powerful alderman called Thursday for a boycott of oil giant BP -- by city government and consumers alike -- to stop the company's refinery in northwest Indiana from dumping more pollution into Lake Michigan.

...Burke isn't stopping there. He's also using the clout he has as finance chairman to unilaterally cut off city bond business to three financial institutions whose directors have "interlocking relationships" with BP: Goldman Sachs, Bank of America and the Royal Bank of Scotland.

The chairman of the board of BP is also the chairman of Goldman Sachs International and a director of the Royal Bank of Scotland. Another BP director is also chairman of the Royal Bank of Scotland. Still another BP director is a director for Bank of America and McDonald's.

The stakes are high. Since 2002, Goldman Sachs has received $1.1 million in city bond business. Bank of America has raked in $1.8 million.

The city's leverage against McDonald's is the lucrative concession agreements the fast-food giant has at O'Hare and Midway airports, Burke said.

Bravo, Alderman Burke. The Sun-Times knows to strike while the irons hot, and today they editorialize about the issue. They throw this jab at the oil giant:
t's hard to believe a company that made $22.3 billion last year can't afford to come up with a more creative solution.

It's a solid issue, and one that Congressman Mark Kirk is standing up for. You can sign his petition here. I've already signed it. Go ahead. Join me.

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