Big Oil

To: Big Oil's Big 5
From: Your Advisor
Date: 14 November 2005
RE: It Ain't Easy Being Big

Gentlemen, let me first congratulate you on a fine showing last week before U.S. Senators trying to grill you on what you do best - keeping the world fun for SUVs.

All five of you should stand proud. In the last quarter, Exxon-Mobil, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, BP, and Royal Dutch-Shell reported total earnings of nearly $33 billion - equal to the cost of about 6 months occupying Iraq. We pay to get the oil for you. Then, we pay again to get the oil from you. Now that's what I call a business cycle! Three cheers.

As captains of industry you lead those willing to follow and so I thought I would outline below your Senate hearing highlights:

You showed great insight in taking the unusual step of emptying reporters and photographers from the hearing room before you took your seats.

This allowed you to enter and sit without looking like other recent witnesses from other recent industry captains, like Bernard Ebbers.

You were also careful to avoid being sworn-in.

This allowed you to speak from the heart. And in case your heart "forgot" something your brain remembered, helped you avoid perjury charges.

To ease gasoline prices, you asked the government to ease federal environmental regulations and open offshore sanctuaries to oil and natural gas exploration.

Finally, CEOs with the courage to blame the tree huggers for their money gouging.

"I can recall with pain when crude oil was at $10 a barrel," said Exxon CEO Lee R. Raymond. "And consumers were very happy because gasoline was at less than $1 a gallon.

Hard-scrabble reality on the mean-streets of big-oil. Your gritty truth is finally told. Thank you. Thank you all.