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It seems like every time we announce ExxonMobil’s earnings, critics jump on soapboxes to demand that we and others in the industry pay more in taxes, predictably calling for the repeal of so-called “subsidies” to the industry that are nothing more than standard tax provisions. Today was no exception. We reported our earnings, and before you could say “Big Oil,” the usual critics were urging the U.S. government to punish ExxonMobil.

Like so many Americans, I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Sally Ride yesterday after a lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer. Many knew her for her accomplishments as the first American woman in space. However, among her many achievements was to inspire young people, particularly girls, to become interested in science and to pursue careers in science, engineering and math.

In finalizing its proposed offshore oil and gas leasing program covering the years 2012-2017 recently, the Obama administration announced it was advancing the president’s “directive to continue to expand safe and responsible production of America’s important domestic resources.” But a closer look at the plan’s details makes one wonder where the expansion is.

NPR had a good piece Wednesday morning about the state of the economic recovery in the United States. What really stood out was its treatment of the transformative role played by the American oil and gas industry in driving economic growth and job creation. Among the guests on the Morning Edition segment was Zanny Minton Beddoes of The Economist, who highlighted the role of American shale oil and gas development. Beddoes said it “is completely revolutionizing part of the U.S. economy, and it’s a strength that a lot of other advanced economies haven’t got.”

  • Worth a deeper look...