Thursday, May 15, 2008

Corruption in Fort Worth, Texas?

You non-Texans, I'm going to be writing about Fort Worth here. So, you might want to look away if you don't want to be freshly appalled at how different things are here than how your city and state operates.

Fort Worth started as a Fort. That is sort of obvious. What isn't so obvious is that Fort Worth is run by what amounts to being a Ruling Junta, with little accountability to the good citizens of Fort Worth.

A few years ago it was discovered that natural gas, in shale form, known as the Barnett Shale, was underneath much of north Texas, including Fort Worth. Prior to the drilling beginning, Fort Worth's Ruling Junta installed an oilman named Mike Moncrief as Mayor of Fort Worth. That is Mike Moncrief behind bars in the photo.

Mike Moncrief is a millionaire. He has holdings in all the drilling companies that have been and continue knocking holes in the ground all over Fort Worth.

Last year Mayor Mike Moncrief made an estimated $633,000.00 from his various oil and gas deals.

Now, in pretty much any jurisdiction in the rest of America a mayor would recuse himself from having a say in any public policy matter that affected his holdings. In the rest of the nation this is what is known as a conflict of interest.

In Fort Worth it is known as the status quo.

In a bizarre case of one of the foxes saying the hen house is safe, Fort Worth's Ruling Junta's mouthpiece, that being City Attorney David Yett, said Moncrief's gas and oils deals are not a conflict of interest because no single one of his deals amounts to more than 10% of Moncrief's total income.


Moncrief's wife also benefits from all the gas drilling by owning her own stock in one of the drilling companies called XTO.

Fort Worth's Ruling Junta continues to approve of new drilling operations, one of the latest being Chesapeake Energy will be drilling under the heart of downtown Fort Worth thanks to the Bass Family selling them the drilling rights to the parking lots known as Sundance Square.

I don't know what the Mayor of Fort Worth's cut will work out to be for the Sundance Square wells.

And on a totally different, yet related subject. Did you know that these gas wells sometimes blow up? Watch this video of a well explosion 30 miles west of my abode. I saw the smoke plume from this one.


Patty said...

Texas really is an entirely different country isn't it?

Steve-O said...

I like the way you roll -- take no prisoners. Keep up the good work. I can see I need to drop by here more often.

Durango said...

Thanks for liking my rolling. Taking prisoners is way too much extra bother, not to mention time consuming.