Monday :: Feb 27, 2012

Big Oil vs the Little Guys

by Mary

According to TPM, Tea Partiers in the path of the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline are uniting with environmentalists to protest the pipeline. Why? Because TransCanada has been aggressively using threats of eminent domain to take over the land if the farmers and land owners aren't selling their property to the company.

Farmers on the proposed route likely wouldn’t face these threats were it not for the 2005 case Kelo v. City of New London in which the Supreme Court, divided 5-4, ruled that eminent domain powers extend to the transfer of land from one private owner to another, if that action increases economic development.

The ruling outraged conservatives and libertarians. The effect of it today is to place people like Randy Thompson on an unfamiliar side of the divide between conservatives and environmentalists; and business and liberal political activists. He even testified this month against TransCanada as a witness for Henry Waxman’s minority on the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

“I’m a little ashamed to say that maybe if it hadn’t come across our land, I wouldn’t have gotten involved,” he told me. “I’ve gained a great deal of respect for people who do care about our environment I’ve become much more aware of environmental issues. I have to admire them for being concerned about our environment.”

“Republicans,” he said, by contrast, “could give a rats ass about the people out here.”

Obviously this is another case where conservatives side with the people they normally hate because it's their ox being gored this time.

Mary :: 10:01 PM :: Comments (4) :: Digg It!