Sunday, August 23, 2009

Obama to finance offshore drilling ... in Brazil

From the Wall Street Journal:
You read that headline correctly. Unfortunately, the Obama Administration is financing oil exploration off Brazil.

The U.S. is going to lend billions of dollars to Brazil's state-owned oil company, Petrobras, to finance exploration of the huge offshore discovery in Brazil's Tupi oil field in the Santos Basin near Rio de Janeiro. Brazil's planning minister confirmed that White House National Security Adviser James Jones met this month with Brazilian officials to talk about the loan.

The U.S. Export-Import Bank tells us it has issued a "preliminary commitment" letter to Petrobras in the amount of $2 billion and has discussed with Brazil the possibility of increasing that amount. Ex-Im Bank says it has not decided whether the money will come in the form of a direct loan or loan guarantees. Either way, this corporate foreign aid may strike some readers as odd, given that the U.S. Treasury seems desperate for cash and Petrobras is one of the largest corporations in the Americas. ...

Article here. I guess when you're spending trillions of the people's money, a few billion may not seem like much anymore to the Washington elites. We have long since become our own worst enemy, and now the game seems to be to figure out the most imaginative way to simultaneously screw the American taxpayer and screw our domestic energy industry, all while helping our economic competitors boost theirs.

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