Energy Sec Demands Racist Banks Stop Racisming Poor ... Oil Companies, With Racism
Everyone is the new Rosa Parks these days. Mask refusers, anti-vaxxers, Elon Musk, and now oil companies. At least according to Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette, who is every bit as gaffe-prone as Rick Perry, but with worse hair.
Here's Secretary Brouillette decrying evil banks who refuse to finance drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
For years and years and years, banks would not lend money, insurance companies would not write policies in minority areas in the country. Redlining is the term used all throughout those debates. We didn't want banks redlining certain parts of the country. We don't want that here. I do not think banks should be redlining our oil and gas investment across the country.
Because systematic exclusion of African Americans from homeownership is exactly the same as refusing to finance immensely unpopular fossil fuel extraction in sensitive ecological areas. Obviously!
This wasn't a leak from a closed-door speech to some industry group; Brouillette actually said this on purpose to Axios's Amy Harder. Because Dan Brouillette is that just that good at finessing the media.
The secretary's brave stance for the civil rights of oil companies arose after Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo, Citi, Morgan Stanley, and JPMorgan said they weren't going to finance any more Arctic drilling projects, including in ANWR.
For instance, in a February announcement, JP Morgan Chase committed to "source renewable energy for 100 percent of its global power needs by 2020," cease financing any coal companies immediately, and exit existing coal company loans by 2024, and to refuse "financing or other forms of asset-specific financing where the proceeds will be used for new oil and gas development in the Arctic."
Which is just good business sense when oil is basically free and the Lower Forty Eight rests on an ocean of natural gas that won't get a bank picketed when it lends money to pull that stuff out of the ground. JP Morgan, one of the lenders financing the Dakota Access Pipeline, knows that some loans bring more bad publicity than they're worth. Plus there's the whole issue of OUR PLANET BEING ON FIRE.
But Energy Secretary Brouillette knows that a private company deciding which sectors to invest in is hideous discrimination. And so do the 36 Republican members of Congress who wrote a letter to Donald Trump on May 7 complaining that
"major American financial institutions continue unfairly to pick energy winners and losers in order to placate the environmental fringe" as they "openly discriminate against the American energy sector." They are GRRR SO MAD that banks get to participate in the coronavirus recovery loan programs while refusing to lend to those squeaky clean coal companies.
Did we mention that Republicans looooove the free market all the time except when they don't? WE DID.
Meanwhile, back at the Energy Department, spokeshack Shaylyn Hynes is disgusted that the lamestream media would take the secretary's explicit analogy to racial discrimination and pretend that he was likening energy companies to victims of racial discrimination.
"Secretary Brouillette has zero tolerance for discrimination of any type, and he was not in any way equating the plight of minority communities to that of energy companies," she huffed to Axios. "Accusing him of doing so in order to manufacture a dramatic headline is both disingenuous and not based in any truth."
"What he did do is make the powerful point that historically there had been discrimination practiced by some in the financial services industry, a custom he and many others worked hard to eliminate and continue to oppose," she continued. Repeating the original analogy equating discrimination against black Americans with the plight of fossil fuel companies.
Filth. These people are filth.
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.