Sunday, August 11, 2013

What the Hell is Happening to My Country, Part 49,926...

Kimberley Strassel, writing at the Wall Street Journal, points out a relatively small, but telling piece of corruption: a single oil refinery (out of 143) has been granted an exemption from the mandate to include ethanol in the gasoline they produce.  The other 142 refineries are being told to take up the slack for the one exempted.

What refinery is the lucky recipient of this exemption?  And by what process was the exemption granted?  Here's where the stench of corruption really starts pouring forth: the EPA (the government agency responsible for assigning ethanol mandate targets) refuses to say which refinery was exempted, or why.  Furthermore, they even fiddled the public numbers to hide which refinery it was.

Ms. Strassel concludes:
Dozens of small refineries are being crushed by the mandate, and a number have petitioned the EPA for exemptions. If "disproportionate economic hardship" is the agency's standard, no doubt plenty would qualify. Yet only one got the nod. The rest of the industry is dying to know what is so special about this refinery, especially since the EPA is making every other refinery shoulder its burden.

The public should want to know too. Washington is rife with secret deals that reward select corporate players, and the numbers have only accelerated under this "most transparent" of administrations. If the process by which the EPA issued this exemption was aboveboard, it should have no problem divulging details. Until that time, the public might fairly assume funny business. 
Go read the whole thing, then write your Congresscritters (I just did).  My conclusion?

   EPA Administrators.
   Some assembly required.