Phillip Morris Wins in Missouri
Philip Morris USA and other major tobacco companies won a lawsuit Friday filed by 37 Missouri hospitals seeking more than $455 million for treating sick smokers. Philip Morris USA was one of six tobacco companies involved in the lawsuit. The hospitals had claimed cigarette companies delivered an "unreasonably dangerous" product.
Clean Water and Dust Regs. Might Bother Farmers
The chief environmental counsel for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association says the EPA’s proposed clean water guidelines could have a devastating impact on America’s farmers and ranchers.
"I don't know what the plan is over there. But if we can't work with water or dusty situations, what do they expect us to do?" Tamara Thies says the clean water guidelines and the dust regulations are two more examples of what she calls the Obama administration’s vast overreach. The National Corn Growers Association President Bart Schott says he’s concerned that the new proposal could expand EPA’s authority over isolated waters including ditches and farm ponds.
No Word On Damage to Farms Yet
Sixty-percent of Alabama’s poultry farms were in the path of the recent tornadoes. Ray Hilburn of the Alabama Poultry and Egg Association suggests it’ll take several days to determine the full extent of bird losses and infrastructure damage.
"So many growers we haven't even talked to yet, we can't get to them because of trees down, these are in rural areas."
Consumer Spending Up, Because of Gas and Food Prices
Gasoline prices are expected to soar to new heights this summer. On Friday, Chevron announced first-quarter earnings rose 36 percent. The CEO of Growth Energy Tom Buis says there’s nothing wrong with profits but there is something wrong with this picture. He notes the profit margins of oil companies isn’t simply due to higher fuel prices but also tax breaks.
"The impact on our economy and the fact that we're struggling in the United States with a huge federal budget deficit, it looksl ike to me that they're doing well enough that those tax credits could be eliminated."
Domestic Oil Production and Lizards...
You might think that getting oil out of the ground in places like Texas and New Mexico these days might be a priority but you'd be wrong:
If the dunes sagebrush lizard is designated as 'endangered', the idea of 'west Texas tea' would be no more in five counties here and four more in New Mexico. Barbara Shook is with Energy Intelligence: "No matter what direction you look in, you're going to see pumping units because this is oil country." Two of the counties are the top producers in Texas. Shook says Obama is talking from both sides of his mouth, pushing increased domestic oil production while at the same time calling it into question.