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Thursday, November 10, 2005

Kangaroo Court

Kangaroo Court: Noun; "A self-appointed tribunal that violates established legal procedure; also, a dishonest or incompetent court of law. For example, The rebels set up a kangaroo court and condemned the prisoners to summary execution, or That judge runs a kangaroo courthe tells rape victims they should have been more careful. This expression is thought to liken the jumping ability of kangaroos to a court that jumps to conclusions on an invalid basis. [Mid-1800s]"
1. A mock court set up in violation of established legal procedure.
2. A court characterized by dishonesty or incompetence. [AmericanHeritage]

"And that definition clearly describes yesterday's Senate hearings on energy prices.
First and foremost was the Republicans efforts to kiss the pearly white asses of the oil industry executives that they were supposed to be demanding answers from. As you may recall, these executives have used America's oil industry crisis to rake record profits, while bleeding American consumers dry (Exxon, for instance, pocketed more in profits this quarter than any corporation in U.S. history). Yet, instead of grilling these guys, the GOP did everything they could to make them comfortable. As just one example, Republicans refused to swear in the executives, and actually cleared the room of reporters so that there weren't any damning photos of them a la the famous hearings with tobacco industry execs." [Sirota]

What's worse is this: "But what really made this a kangaroo court was the testimony of Federal Trade Commission Chairwoman Deborah Majoras. As the New York Times reported, " she opposed a federal price-gouging law because it might lead to price caps." Hmm...so let us get this straight - the industry is price gouging Americans all over the country, but what we really should be afraid of is a law barring that price gouging because it may actually force companies to bring down their prices?"

More on Majoras here. [WorkingForChange]
Oil Company Execs Defend Huge Profits. [Yahoo]

This is fantastic. Bush appoints Majoras, a former ChevronTexaco exec, to head the Federal Trade Commission. What a gift to the oil companies, and ensures they stay loyal to the republican party. So, the republicans let these execs continue bilking the American consumer for extraordinary amounts, but it's ok because the oil industry is lining their pockets to keep them in office. Then they get soft questions when they finally have a hearing in the House about it, and don't even swear in the execs to keep them "honest." I love cronyism!!!

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