According to reports from Fox News and the Wall Street Journal, President Barack Obama has generously agreed to lend $2 billionÂ to the oil industry for the purpose of offshore drilling. Those of you who have been proponents of this for some time now are probably thinking that the president has finally come to his senses and has taken the first of many concrete steps required in order to reduce Americaâ€™s dependence on foreign oil.
Not so fast.
Like everything else coming out of the Obama administration, thereâ€™s more to this than meets the eye. The government is not lending the money (your money, actually) so that our domestic oil industry can drill offshore and in oil-rich areas with proven reserves such as the Gulf of Mexico. Rather, the government is lending the money to Brazil, so that they can drill offshore and in the Gulf of Mexico.
The recipient of this great act of generosity is Brazilâ€™s quasi-public national oil company, Petrobras, which will use the money for the exploration and drilling of 270 sites in the Gulf of Mexico and over 200 more off the coast of Brazil itself.
For those not knowing much about Petrobras, here are a few interesting facts:
â€¢ The Company has been run since 2005 by JosÃ© Sergio Gabrielli, a firebrand socialist member of Brazilâ€™s leftist Workersâ€™ Party.
â€¢Â Brazilâ€™s socialist government holds 40% ofÂ Petrobras’ shares. The Communist Chinese–who have been guaranteed a supply of 200,000 barrels of oil a day for ten years by the Brazilians in exchange for a $10 billion loan from Chinaâ€™s government earlier this year–also own a significant stake in Petrobras.
â€¢Â Petrobrasâ€™ largest individual shareholder, by far, is none other than leftist billionaire George Soros, whose hedge fund, by some remarkable coincidence, increased its holdings in Petrobras just prior to Obamaâ€™s loan announcement.
â€¢ Petrobras is currently under investigation by Brazilâ€™s Congress amid allegations that it has padded contracts and paid off politicians.
So the Brazilians will soon be taking oil from the Gulf of Mexico, one of the richest oil fields in the world (and where, until recently, environmentalist protestations have thwarted any drilling attempts by our own government). And, it seems, they will have plenty of company. China, India, Norway, Spain and Russia, to name a few, have all signed agreements with countries bordering the Gulf, such as Cuba and the Bahamas, enabling them to initiate exploration and production in the Gulf of Mexico as well.
Within the next two years, when rigs proudly displaying the flags of Brazil, China, Russia, Cuba and other countries are extracting oil right off our coast in order to fuel their economies, take note of the fact that the one flag you wonâ€™t be seeing is the Stars and Stripes.Â For that, you may have to visit a wind farm.