Wednesday, September 10, 2008

In Bed with the Oil Industry

You can't make this stuff up.

David Ivanovich reports in the Houston Chronicle today:

The Interior Department's Inspector General, who has been investigating the U.S. Minerals Management Service's Royalty-In-Kind program, said government employees who were supposed to be regulating the oil companies were engaging in drug use and having sex with industry contacts.

"Several staff admitted to illegal drug use as well as illicit sexual encounters," Inspector General Earl Devaney wrote in a Sept. 9 memo to Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne released today....

Devaney said that between 2002 and 2006, a third of the Royalty-In-Kind staff socialized with, and received a wide array of gifts and gratuities from companies with which the government was doing business.

"While the dollar amounts of gifts and gratuities was not enormous, these employees accepted [gifts] and gratuities on at least 135 occasions from four major oil and gas companies with whom they were doing business — a textbook example of improperly receiving gifts from prohibited sources," Devaney said. "When confronted by our investigators, none of the employees involved displayed remorse."
Here comes the best line in the report, however (italics added):
Two program marketers became so intoxicated on one occasion that they had to accept lodging from industry officials, according to the memo.

"These same ... marketers also engaged in brief sexual relations with industry contacts," Devaney wrote. "Sexual relations with prohibited sources cannot, by definition, be arms-length."
Are we experiencing a cultural moment that calls for the return of Dallas and Dynasty to TV's prime time?

1 comment:

Steven Latimer said...

Do you reckon they used the oil as lube?