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.


  1. NORTHBROOK - Congressman Mark Kirk (R- Illinois) today unveiled a volunteer recruitment effort among Illinois military veterans to staff the newly organized Illinois Lake Brigade. Kirk was appointed the Brigade Commander during a ceremony by American Legion officials in Northbrook.

    Kirk plans to lead the Illinois Lake Brigade into Indiana to prevent the dumping of pollutant materials by the BP Amoco oil refinery in Whiting into Lake Michigan. This would be the first time since the Civil War that a militia from one state would invade another. “Dammit, this has to get done!” Kirk told the cheering American Legion crowd. “We have to protect our water whether the dumping occurs in Indiana, and yes, Wisconsin.” Kirk proclaimed this effort as "Operation Hoosier". He chastised the British owners of BP saying, “Those Englishmen can pollute their own rivers all they want. They will not do it in my lake!” He added it is now appropriate for police to detain anyone with a British accent in light of the BP dumping plans.

    Blackwater USA, the private militia and security company which has a training facility in northwest Illinois, pledged to provide logistical support and training to the volunteers. Blackwater has extensive military experience in Iraq and Afghanistan. “The professionalism that Blackwater will bring this endeavor will cause serious pause for officials in Indiana who refuse to back down on the dumping issue.” Kirk said. Blackwater recently started providing security to the Kirk to keep anti-war protesters away and recently endorsed him for re-election.

    In front of the enthusiastic American Legion audience, the North Shore congressman had a blunt warning to Indiana about their plans for "Hoosier pollution". “If it has to come to war, then so be it. This is a just cause. If blood has to be spilled over this, then it is up to the authorities in Indiana to back down and realize the serious errors they are planning to commit. They will be personally responsible.”

    Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels put the Indiana National Guard and State Police on high alert after receiving word of Kirk’s threats. He said, “We will not allow any criminal gangs from Chicago to have control of our Indiana streets or our Indiana oil refineries. That punk Mark Kirk better watch his ass.”

  2. As long as the Bush administration exists, BP and any other oil company will do whatever they please. Be realistic. It would cost BP more money to find alternative disposal methods for their toxins. A Lake Michigan sewer is the cheapest method. All the blustering by Mark Kirk will not change their plans.

    Short of an armed assault on that Whiting refinery, the only solution will be a change of control in Washington away from the neocons. Yes, that means Democrats. The Republicans have pissed away their opportunities into Iraq. But they secured the Iraqi oil for BP, Shell and Mobil. When gas hits $4 a gallon, BP will still be dumping their shit into Lake Michigan and there will be nothing any of us will do to stop that. At least until 2009, maybe.

    Mark Kirk is only doing what he is doing to boost his sagging re-election chances. Kirk is a political showboat, very similar to Rod Blagojevich. Nothing more. He is no hero.

    But you seem to admire him. Should Mark Kirk run for US Senate?

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