You don’t have to read too far into “Louisiana judge overturns offshore drilling moratorium” to figure out where this one is going …
Like many judges presiding in the Gulf region, [Judge Martin Leach-Cross] Feldman owns lots of energy stocks, including Transocean, Halliburton, and two of BP’s largest U.S. private shareholders — BlackRock (7.1%) and JP Morgan Chase (28.3%). Here’s a list of Feldman’s income in 2008(amounts listed unless under $1,000):
BlackRock ($12000- $36000)
Ocean Energy ($1000 – $2500)
NGP Capital Resources ($1000 – $2500)
Quicksilver Resources ($5000 – $15000)
Hercules Offshore ($6000 – $17500)
Atlas Energy Resources
EV Energy Partners
El Paso Corp
ATP Oil & Gas
In his opinion today, Feldman wrote, “Oil and gas production is quite simply elemental to Gulf communities.” Indeed, it is so elemental that the justice system is invested in the oil and gas industry. As TP’s Ian Millhiser has written, “Industry ties among federal judges are so widespread that they are beginning to endanger the courts’ ability to conduct routine business.
The administration is appealing, but how far can that go, knowing that the ultimate court of review has a plutocrat majority?