Rachel Maddow Tears Apart Oil Company’s Ridiculous Claim That Oil Spills Can Have “Positive Effects”

maddow-oil-spillsThis is one of those times when I have to give the obligatory “this is not satire” warning.  The only thing I can compare it to are those old ads I’ve seen from the tobacco industry about “doctor recommended cigarettes,” though I think this is actually even more ridiculous.

It seems that Kinder Morgan believes that oil spills can actually have “positive effects.”  The company claims that following oil spills there’s the chance for an “economic boost” to local economies by way of jobs being created to clean up the spill.

No, seriously, that’s what they’re claiming.

This laughable argument stems from Kinder Morgan’s attempts to get the Canadian government to allow them to triple the capacity of their pipeline.  Their argument literally being that if they’re allowed to pump more oil there’s a better chance for an oil spill that might then lead to jobs being created wherever that spill might occur.

If there was ever a time for a “facepalm” moment, this would be it.

It’s like trying to make the argument that cancer is good because the fight against cancer has created so many jobs in the medical field.

But I think Rachel Maddow put it brilliantly.  She said, in part:

“That is seriously what Kinder Morgan is arguing to the freaking Canadian government about why they should be allowed to triple the capacity of their pipeline. More oil means more chances for oil spills. And more oil spills means more jobs cleaning up oil spills.  Honestly, this is like, in old movies and old cartoons like you’d see a vacuum cleaner salesman, the guy would come and knock on the door and if you open the door, he’d dump the bag of dirt, you know, coffee grounds or whatever into your rug. ‘Hey, I’m offering to sell you a vacuum cleaner to clean it up.’ That’s what Kinder Morgan is doing.”

I couldn’t have said it better because that’s exactly what they’re trying to argue.  They’re attempting to justify their desire to triple their pipeline capacity by saying that if the environmentalists are right and this move could lead to catastrophic oil spills, it won’t be all bad – because if there is a spill we should think of all the jobs that might be created cleaning it up.

It’s quite honestly one of the most ridiculous arguments I’ve ever seen used by a corporation trying to get away with something.  I just hope the Canadian government isn’t foolish enough to fall for it.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • Mrs_oatmeal

    How smart! You could have jobs created so workers get to spend their day cleaning up an environmentally toxic mess! ( while the oil companies rake in their millions). Oh, there probably won’t be any health repercussions. Yea. Sign me up. Jerks!

  • Edward Krebbs

    I say call them on facts. From the Deepwater Horizon, how much money went into the economy for the cleanup? Versus How much money was lost from fishing, tourism, etc. And how much continues to be lost as people like myself remain skeptical of the quality of cleanup and therefore don’t go there as tourists and don’t buy gulf fish/shrimp/etc.? And then there is estimating the costs of treating any illnesses related to long-term exposure to the spill and contaiminated foods.

    • Jim Bean

      I was there this time last year on vacation. The beaches were beautiful. Had a great time and lived to tell about it.

  • surfjac

    Probably the most long lasting jobs created from Keystone will be in the clean-up industry. Not to worry, they’ll destroy an aquifer but look at all those jobs! Ain’t that sumpthin’?