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No, Gary Peters' investment in a French oil company does not raise eyebrows

by: Eric B.

Wed Aug 20, 2014 at 17:25:09 PM EDT


Chad Selweski found a post at the Detroit News opinion blog thing that he linked to because it was supposed to do what Chad Selweski like to do, pretend that everyone is equally terrible so you don't have to take a position on someone's awfulness. In this case, it's Terri Lynn Land's awfulness as a candidate and the mysterious $3 million and whatnot. Or, in the case of the original post that Selweski links to, a portion of Gary Peters' investment portfolio.

Kudos to Brandon Helderop, a New Hudson freelance writer, who has reportedly uncovered a glaring bit of hypocrisy in Senate candidate Gary Peters’ personal finances.

A Republican activist, Helderop wrote on his blog that the Democratic congressman, who paints himself as pro-environment and anti-Keystone pipeline, has a large investment in a French oil company, Total S.A. France. According to the company’s website, they are the fifth largest publicly-traded international oil and gas company in the world.

How large an investment, what percentage of his total portfolio is invested in oil? We're never actually told, only that it's large. So, what about the hypocritical nature of this particular investment? It's pure "Al Gore flies in jets, so he doesn't care about climate change" nonsense. It's expecting someone to hold themselves to a standard that you yourself set for them and that is arbitrary and unrealistic.

First off, Total S.A. isn't behind the Keystone pipeline. A Canadian pipeline company is. Second, petroleum isn't the same thing as the petroleum-like substance synthesized from Canadian tar sands. Third, the only way this smacks the slightest of hypocrisy is if Gary Peters has ever in his life said that we need to stop burning all petroleum right this instant, which not only hasn't ever happened but would be, well, an insane thing to say (we should stop burning petroleum, but we are currently dependent upon it).

So, there's no "glaring hypocrisy" or anything else here. It's just that Gary Peters' investment portfolio includes holdings in energy, which if you want an investment portfolio that is, you know, successful, you probably want.

This is great stuff for rightwing bloggers to flog. These people are mostly bellowing and shouting the same kind of thing about Tom Steyer just as they did it when they discovered that Al Gore's house used a lot of electricity (also that Al Gore at one point was heavy). This is the sort of thing that works to whip the rubes into a right frenzy and into believing that they're on to something. In some circles, Al Gore's energy use is still considered a reliable excuse to say that climate change is a myth.

Chad Selweski isn't a rightwing blogger, however. He's a centrist columnist who should know better than to fall for this sort of thing. Hopefully anyone who reads his post will be smart enough not to join him.

Eric B. :: No, Gary Peters' investment in a French oil company does not raise eyebrows
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The Funny Thing (0.00 / 0)
The funny thing about the right-wings take on this is that this is an attack that, at best, was initiated the fend off an attack on their candidate.  At best, this kind of attack is done to neutralize a successful attack against your candidate ("see, both sides do it").  This does kind of retaliatory attack isn't the kind that gains you ground; it's the kind that you hope stops the bleeding.  

No swing voter in their right mind who'd vote on an issue of the environment believes that Gary Peters is worse on the environment than Terri Lynn Land.

Land supporters, you're going to have to do way better than this if you even want to keep this race competive.  And, no, your trollish Republican pollsters with your ridiculous samples trying to show this as a race within the low single digits does not make it so.


Mark my words (0.00 / 0)
Peters wins by 10, Schauer by a couple, Totten sends Schuette into retirement, and Dillard does the same to Ruth Johnson. Dems don't get the 55 or so percent needed in legislative races, so don't flip the House or Senate, so it's not all jubilation on election night. We need redistricting reform badly.


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