The Spill, The Scandal and the President

The inside story of how Obama failed to crack down on the corruption of the Bush years – and let the world’s most dangerous oil company get away with murder

A revealing article in Rolling Stone points out how Obama and Salazar did nothing to reform the well known corruption at MMS. It is expected that industry will try to cut as many corners as possible but the culture at the Department of Interior’s Minerals Management Service did nothing to curb the corruption of gas and oil companies and instead facilitated the current destruction of the Gulf of Mexico.

“Bush owns eight years of the mess,” says Rep. Darrell Issa, a Republican from California. “But after more than a year on the job, Salazar owns it too.”

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Members of Congress say abolish Minerals Management Service

Agency inspectors have still been accepting oil company gifts-

Lawmakers assail Minerals Management Service. By Perry Bacon Jr., David A. Fahrenthold and Steven Mufson. Washington Post Staff Writer. The agency might be beyond the ability to be reformed.

Interior official who oversees offshore drilling for MMS resigns

Chris Oynes will step down

Interior official who oversees offshore drilling for MMS resigns.
Washington Post

Minerals Management Service to undergo reform?

Salazar claims he will solve problems by dividing the oil leasing/revenue collecting agency-

It’s an obscure agency in the Dept of Interior to some, but not to the oil companies or the federal treasury. It collects more money than any federal agency except the IRS. It has been the seat of a number a scandals in recent years from undercollecting royalities, lax safety and environmental oversight, and giving out oil and gas leases for sex from oil lobbyists.

When Salazar took office he said these days were over.  He hopes splitting the environmental oversight and safety part of the agency from the leasing and royalty collection will help.

In other news, public support for more offshore drilling is collapsing in the polls. So is perception that Obama is doing a good job handling the situation.

Here’s a story from the Washington Post. Minerals Management Service to undergo radical overhaul. By Juliet Eilperin and Ed O’Keefe: