Saturday, April 19, 2008


When Senator Hillary Clinton's staffers said they were throwing the kitchen sink at Senator Barack Obama, they were not kidding. Someone this Saturday night hacked the website. This video shows what happened when I went to my blog page, then clicked on "Community Blogs" -- I was taken to the front page of Senator Clinton's website.

This means Senator Clinton's staffers possibly hired someone to hack into the Barack Obama website system. Such efforts generally don't go unpaid, either.

Moreover, Blue State Digital is running the site, and has to bear some responsibility for this. Did an ex-Blue State Staffer do this? Was Blue State hired by the Clinton staff recently? There are many questions to answer. But if Senator Clinton bowed out of the race, these games would stop.

This is serious because it means Senator Clinton could also unethically poach donors from the Obama campaign via online website redirects like this. Terrible and unethical.

Barack Obama Oakland Delegate Convention Movie - Oakland,CA

This is a 20 minute movie on the dramatic event that was the convention held in Oakland, CA to elect delegates to represent the 9th Congressional District in Oakland and Barack Obama. It drew 2,000 people.

If you live in Oakland and are politically involved, you're going to see someone you know in this video. It was really a kind of homecoming for people in Oakland politics and of course Oaklanders who have been involved with the Obama campaign. I thank the people in the video from Peralta Community College District Chancellor Elihu Harris to my friends, all of whom are in the movie and listed, and the delegate winners in this movie who are just some of the Oaklanders that will represent Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention, Jennifer Pae, Fred Feltz, Mark Friedman, Ayelet Waldman , and Darlene Brooks.

The estimate of 2,000 people was my own and came from first, eyeballing the event, second from figuring that of 101 candidates, each had perhaps 10 people average who came out for them, which leads to 1,000 people, then adding volunteers, media, and people who just wanted to see what was happening, and then participate.

More Chevron Truth

Chevron, the parent company of Texaco Petroleum (Texpet) has been horribly libeled in the media as well as the courtroom by opportunistic U.S. environmental lawyers looking to turn a quick buck. They were illegitimately sued for its partnership with Petroecuador, Ecuador’s state-owned oil company. Chevron has been falsely linked to genocide and that is patently false as evidenced with the steady increase of the Cofan indigenous population from 1920 to present day.

There is absolutely no basis for the claim of genocide of any indigenous group. Ecuador
government census data and all peer-reviewed published population data agree that the population of the six indigenous groups has either increased or remained stable since Texpet began operations in Ecuador. For example, demographic studies presented by Dr. Bedoya indicate that the Cofán - far from "facing extinction" as claimed by the plaintiffs and their supporters - increased in number from about 300 inhabitants in 1955 to 1,044 in the official government of Ecuador census of 2001. All government (1) and peer reviewed population estimates (23) found by Dr. Bedoya are shown in the figure below. Doctor Eduardo Bedoya has a Ph.D in Anthropology from New York University and has worked as consultant for the ILO, CARE-Perú, WINROCK Corporation, the World Bank, and the IUCN.

Cofán Population: 1920 - 2010
ROJO Cofán

1970 1980 1990
Period of Texpet Concession
1920 1930 1940 1950 1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2010
1923: Measles epidemic
Period of
3005 3006

The production took place primarily on government lands and was conducted in compliance with Ecuadorian laws and regulations. Roughly 1.7 million barrels of crude oil were produced, with the Government of Ecuador (GOE) receiving 95% of the total financial proceeds. Perhaps they want more because the Ecuadorian government is in collusion with fraudulent U.S.-based lawyers greedily seeking to extort monies from Chevron over these bogus allegations.

At the conclusion of the venture’s twenty-year concession, the area and facilities of the former consortium were subjected to a government-supervised audit, which, together with other Government data, became the basis for a settlement agreement under which Texpet was required to conduct environmental remediation with respect to the sites in proportion to its one-third interest in the venture. Everything was fine then.

To that end, Texpet executed a $40 million remediation and public works program under close GOE supervision. Texpet’s remediation was fully inspected, certified and approved by the GOE, and the GOE granted Texpet a full and complete release of all further claims, liabilities and obligations associated with Texpet’s operations in Ecuador.

The release documents were signed by the GOE’s Minister of Mines & Energy, the President of Petroecuador, and the General Manger of Petroproduccion—the operational division of Petroecuador. Texpet has had no role whatsoever in exploration and production in Ecuador since 1992.

Petroecuador, the sole owner and proprietor of the oil fields, had 15 years to make remediation and failed to remediate its sites even though it was more than willing to do so when it took the $40 million in funding from Texpet in 1992. The environmental degradation which still takes place today is due to Petroecuador’s poor operations and negligence, and the Ecuadorian government’s unwillingness to fund adequate remediation.

Interestingly, in 1999, seven years after Texpet ceased to have any involvement in Ecuadorian operations, the government of Ecuador enacted a new environmental statute – the 1999 Environmental management Act. This allowed any Ecuadorian to file suit for environmental reparations on behalf of the collectivity. While the 1999 EMA created new substantive rights that did not previously exist, the new law cannot be used to challenge pre-1999 conduct, as per Article 7 of the Civil Code of Ecuador, which expressly prohibits retroactive application of Ecuadorian substantive law. Nevertheless, in 2003 the very same U.S. lawyers whom have been waging this campaign since 1993 filed suit against Chevron using this same 1999 law. They should be disbarred for misrepresenting a legal statute in a transparent effort to extort monies from Chevron.

Chevron is getting blamed for environmental degradation and being illegitimately sued for an environmental crime committed by Petroecuador which accepted Chevron/Texpet’s $40 million pay-out and didn’t fulfill its responsibility to remediate the sites that were explored and extracted. A costly and long-standing legal dispute has arisen between U.S.-based contingency fee-based trial lawyers working in partnership with NGOs and local activists whose goal is to extort a large windfall from Chevron, a large and successful corporation with deep pockets. The general public perceives large corporations such as Chevron as evil-doers, and public opinion tends to scapegoat them.

The litigation in Ecuador has followed the typical pattern for such suits. The lawyers retained a consultant to devise an astronomical estimate of financial liability, which the plaintiffs have attempted to use to frighten the company into a settlement. The expert in question, David Russell, made only a cursory examination of a small handful of sites and did not seek to distinguish between damage caused by Texpet/Petroecuador consortium and damage caused by Petroecuador over the 15 years since Texpet left Ecuador. Also, they did not determine how much was the fault of Petroecuador’s and the Government of Ecuador’s negligence after they had received $40 million in funding to more than cover the costs of this operation from Chevron, as well as being signed off by the GOE upon Texpet’s agreed-upon departure.

Ad-Tech San Francisco Digital Marketing Convention - Video

This video presents sights, sounds, and people at Ad-Tech San Francisco, a digital marketing convention annually held at Moscone Center in San Francisco. What I noticed about Ad-Tech this year is that there was less space used overall but more people, and far more people of color than ever before.