Monday, June 23, 2008

Russian Oil

Heard this on the radio the other day. It's long, and it's not really that fascinating, but there it is. It's a 20 minute radio documentary on Russian oil, Medvedev and Putin.

Apparently, there has been some nastiness recently (and for the last hundred years, apparently) in the Russian oil industry. There are some oil companies who are in bed with the politicians, and they are appropriating assets to make a profit. It's like the wild west. Bits of it sound like it'd make a cool movie.

Two things I'd like to point out to any potential listener:
  1. The sense of astonishment that oil companies would behave in an unethical manner, buy politicians off, and resort to force to get what they want. It speaks of a naivete that is nothing short of breathtaking.
  2. The horror at the fact that it's difficult to draw a line between the oil company and the federal government. The idea that you have to cross the Atlantic to get that kind of story (or leave the fucking country, for that matter) is wonderful. Apparently, it has escaped everyone's notice that Cheney used to run Halliburton, and Bush is neck deep in oil. Or that Ed Stelmach is clearly in the pock of Alberta Oil, is as our PM, Mr. Harper.
I know that most reporters are smarter than that. And I'd like to think that our National Broadcaster recruits some pretty bright lights. But after this story, I'm not so sure.

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