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Apr 20, 2007 - 02:30 PM

Will Arnold Take On Chevron?

by Jamie Court
The lawyer from Ecuador who is prosecuting Chevron for its crimes against the Amazon has written Arnold Schwarzenegger, asking the Gov to get tough with Chevron, which has kicked in more than a half million to Schwarzenegger's political committees.

Peter Nicholas of the LA Times wrote the story. For those of us who have watched Arnold work, it's hard to imagine that letter will get answered.

Schwarzenegger has not lifted a finger to challenge oil company profiteering and, as Nicholas himself reported recently, Schwarzenegger's environmental record is pretty shady... despite Arnold Inc's marketing effort to position the Governator as the second coming of Al Gore.

Bobby Kennedy, the environmental lawyer, is brother-in-law to the Gov, but I doubt even he can defy political reality and get Arnold to criticize one of his top donors. Schwarzenegger's last chief of staff was actually a former Chevron lobbyist. The inconvenient truth is that oil companies are the wind beneath Arnold's political wings and he won't be ruffling any feathers soon.

In addition, California U.S. Senator Feinstein has been trying to convince Arnold Schwarzenegger to allow LNG facilities in California just after the state lands commission voted down a proposal off-shore in Ventura.

Chevron's got a big stake in both isssues, including Australian LNG, the very type bound for California's shore if Schwarzenegger allows the building of a terminal.

Ask around high society in San Francisco and you'll find out that Feinstein and hubby Dick Blum are pals with Chevron CEO David O'Reilly. Is Feinstein's friendship getting in the way of her representation of the state?

Arnold Schwarzenegger has similar choices to make. Chevron is the Gov's 18th largest donor, kicking $516,800 to his political committees, with a host of other LNG advocates on his top 100 list too.

Not only has Schwarzenegger been an LNG supporter, but his appointee on the state lands commission was the losing minority vote in favor of the nixed Ventura project. Reviving that project would take the Gov's support now and a lawsuit against the state lands commission.

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