Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Chesapeake Energy's Aubrey McClendon Modern Day Whimpy

There are a lot of terms one could use to describe Aubrey McClendon of Chesapeake Energy...flamboyant, egotistical, eccentric, brash, self-absorbed, shyster depending on your opinion of him, and the company he co-founded...but perhaps the simplest and most appropriate description of the man is to state he is the modern day Whimpy of Popeye fame, telling his investor's and those he seems to make deals with, "I'll gladly deliver you Natural Gas next Tuesday for a few billion today."
From Wiki

Hamburgers are Wimpy's all-time favorite dish, and he is usually seen carrying or eating one or more at a time – e.g. in Popeye the Sailor Meets Sindbad the Sailor he is seen grinding meat or eating burgers almost the entire time – however, he is usually too cheap to pay for them himself. A recurring joke involves Wimpy's attempts to con other patrons of the diner into buying his meal for him. His best-known catchphrase started in 1931 as "Cook me up a hamburger. I'll pay you Thursday." In 1932, this then became the famous "I'll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today". This phrase is now commonly used to illustrate fiscal irresponsibility and still appears in modern comedies such as The Drew Carey Show and The Office
In Aubrey McClendon's quest to corner the (un)Natural Gas shale plays, to push himself upward into a higher ranking of his billionaire status, he has basically conned investors, the general public and America.  Chesapeake for far too long now has been selling Whimpy's promise, telling investors "We'll gladly sell you a share of this play or that play, will gladly promise you a percentage of the whole when at some future date when it is drilled, if you give us X Billions of dollars today."  McClendon's plan it seems....double down, sell off promises (IE...the company wants to raise $2 Billion by selling a percentage of advanced sales of output in Texas and Oklahoma) of future deliverable s, or better yet, run out the company's cash reserves, deliberate push it into bankruptcy and come out the other end whole while all those who invested in the company take a blood bath.

Sadly, Aubrey McClendon seems to be the poster child for the (un)Natural Gas industry, the whole bloody lot of them prepared to say anything that gets them what they want...the right to FRACK at all costs anywhere and everywhere that shale can be found.  They have bought off politicians, spied (illegally) on those who oppose them, and spent tens if not hundreds of millions of dollars on a propaganda campaign worthy of comparisons to Adolph Hitler and the Third Reich.  How many of us have seen the commercial where Eric Oswald of Exxon tells us, "...we recognize the challenges, and how important it is to do this right".  Exxon and Chesapeake are the two biggest players in the (un)Natural Gas speculation game, the two biggest hucksters trying to sell America and the world on Horizontal Hydraulic Fracturing...can they, and the information they have provided to those who are supposed to be regulating them be trusted?

Chesapeake Energy's financial woes and questionable business practices should lead everyone to one logical conclusion...no, the industry cannot be trusted, and they will NOT GET IT RIGHT.  States like Maryland, Ohio and New York should simply pass a BAN  ALL HYDRAULIC FRACTURING FOR (un)NATURAL GAS...BAN FRACKING.  Problem is, we all know most politicians in positions of authority are as inherently dishonest as the Aubrey McClendon's of the world, each doing their own version of Whimpy as they tell campaign donors, "I will gladly pass laws that favor you when elected if you open up your wallets today." 

 Take our own governor here in New York...he's already bought into the Natural Gas scam, has already decided that extracting natural gas from the Marcellus Shale is far more important than the health of New York's citizens, far more important than our fresh water supplies, far more important than preserving our state parks and natural resources.

Wake up citizens...Whimpy was a CON MAN, and pretty much everyone involved in the (un)Natural Gas industry is no different than this hamburger guzzling character of Popeye fame.

PS...in breaking news of the too little too late variety....Aubrey McClendon is partially being pushed out at Chesapeake, being stripped of his role as Chairman.