Category Archives: Legal

I’ve long said that no likely BP settlement would ever be enough for the damage that its 2010 oil spill caused to the Gulf region. Mostly, that’s a moral argument: The purpose of punitive damages is that a company must be shown that the cost of doing bad is more than doing good — but that’s hard to do when an oil company’s typically reckless drilling and production practices bring [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Claims, Legal, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Restoration, Spill Damages Tagged , , , , ,

Last week I wrote here that BP’s $54 billion payout for damages and restoration from the 2010 Gulf oil spill just wasn’t really enough — both because of the ongoing environmental damage from the Deepwater Horizon oil that continues to wash up on our beaches and because dollars trumped real accountability. You won’t hear that critique too much from public officials, who are too preoccupied with boastful press releases and [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Claims, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Restoration, Spill Damages Tagged , , , , , ,

If anything has the ability to cut through the clutter in our 24/7 frenetic news cycle, it’s Wall Street. Say what you will about the capital markets, but the way that investors react to important news is a pretty good reality check. This week, there was a major development in the quest for just compensation for the 2010 BP oil spill, the ongoing crisis that sparked the creation of this [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Claims, Commentary, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Regulation, Restoration Tagged , , , , , ,

There’s been a lot of excitement about the U.S. Supreme Court as it wrapped up its 2014-15 session, and understandably so. On Friday, many people took to the streets in celebration when the High Court ruled that same-sex marriage is now legal in all 50 states. In fact, that ruling was held up as a sign that the nine justices were, as a whole, becoming more liberal — building upon two [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Politics, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

I’m very grateful to writer Mark Hand and the popular website CounterPunch for reviewing Crude Justice: How I Fought Big Oil and Won, and What You Should Know About the New Environmental Attack on America. I thought Mark’s piece really captured the essence of the book. Here’s an excerpt: Early in his career, Smith said he learned that big oil and gas companies operated in a system that valued profits [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Commentary, Human Interest, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Regulation Tagged , , , , , , , ,

New Orleans has been through a lot of political and physical upheaval since 2005 and the days after Hurricane Katrina. But there is much that hasn’t changed at all. Because so much of our city—nearly 80 percent—was harmed by the levee breaks following Katrina, it made sense to give the updating of the City Zoning Ordinance and the attendant Master Plan a lot of attention since the storm. And to [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Human Interest, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Politics Tagged , , , , , ,

I’m very grateful for this review in the Advocate of my new book, Crude Justice: How In Fought Big Oil and Won, and What You Should Know About the New Environmental Attack on America. You can read the review here. © Smith Stag, LLC 2015 – All Rights Reserved

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Posted in BP Spill, Commentary, Fracking, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Oil Spill Facts Tagged , ,

GE

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Posted in Human Interest, Illnesses, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Radiation, Response Tagged , , , , , , ,

ExxonMobil is arguably the world’s most powerful corporation, with annual revenues greater than many developing nations and a penchant for CIA-grade secrecy. It’s headquartered in a fortress-style building just outside of Dallas that some employees jokingly call “the Death Star.” But if you remember “Star Wars,” you know that even “the Death Star” had a tiny flaw, one that young Luke Skywalker could exploit — with dramatic consequences. In other [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Politics, Restoration, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

There’s something that people who work in the news business call “the Friday night news dump.” It’s a situation that occurs when a source of news – say, a government agency, or a big business – has information that they’re not excited to make public, but was bound to come out eventually. So they release it late on a Friday afternoon. Why? Because more people out for dinner or to [...]

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