February 23, 2012

When you only have one speed, no brakes,

and minimal steering, you're bound to hit walls sometimes.

When I checked in yesterday at Energy in Depth Marcellus, the PR mouthpiece for the gas companies, to see what their response to the Dryden lawsuit ruling might be, all I found was this piece shouting at Vestal lawmakers not to pass a ban that pretty much made exactly the same arguments that Judge Phillip Rumsey had just thrown out.

Maybe their posts are just scheduled in advance? Or maybe they just don't care what the court says?

From their later post on their loss in the Dryden suit, it seems to be the second option (or maybe both). After griping that people mysteriously don't like them, and referencing WKRP in Cincinnati (always a good idea), they march on to "a critical flaw in the judge's reasoning" and give a lot more detail than I would have thought wise on outlines for an appeal. None of their arguments seem especially fatal to me, but there are of course another two levels of court before this case is settled.

The funny part to me, though, is that in their griping, they note an opponent who called them mercenary and don't bother to contest it. They are, of course, the local branch of a mercenary operation:

Launched by the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) in 2009, Energy In Depth (EID) is a research, education and public outreach campaign ... an effort that benefits directly from the support, guidance and technical insight of a broad segment of America's oil and natural gas industry, led in Washington by IPAA, but directed on the ground by our many affiliates — and IPAA's more than 6,000 members — in the states.

They also seem to think that all of their opponents must be mercenary, as this bizarre piece on the Park Foundation suggests. At first I thought that piece was just an incredible exercise in paranoia, but after thinking about it for a while, I suspect they just can't imagine that their opponents would be structured differently from their own operation. People couldn't possibly oppose these things because it's a bad idea - just like Energy in Depth, they must be coordinated from some central place.

On the bright side, mercenary operations require financial support. Maybe collapsing natural gas prices and our having the "wrong" kind of gas, dry instead of wet, will give these folks the opportunity to take their paranoia someplace else - or better yet, shut down.

Posted by simon at February 23, 2012 6:34 PM in , ,
Note on photos