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Well, I guess that explains why the GOP didn’t swear ’em in. The Post obtains a smoking gun document that proves, contrary to their statements last week, big-time oil executives met with Cheney’s energy task force to determine the nation’s energy policy in 2001. No big surprise there — While Cheney has been trying to hide records of the meetings for years, we’ve known that 62 of 63 members of the task force had ties to the coal, nuclear, or oil industries, with nary an environmental group in sight. Plus, it was clear at the time that the final energy plan was tailored by Enron for Enron, and their ilk. Still, this does mean that Big Oil lied bald-faced to Congress (and specifically Sen. Frank Lautenberg, who asked them about this directly.) And, while perjury’s not on the table, “a person can be fined or imprisoned for up to five years for making ‘any materially false, fictitious or fraudulent statement or representation’ to Congress.”

The Halftime Score.

Monica who? On the eve of Dubya II, Salon‘s Peter Dizikes offers a short but comprehensive list of this administration’s scandals thus far. Thirty-four and counting…not that you’d know it from watching the evening news.

Youa Culpa.

Former Enron chief Ken Lay attempts damage control in the New York Times. “‘If anything, being friends with the Bush family, including the president, has made my situation more difficult,’ Mr. Lay said in a recent interview, ‘because it’s probably a tougher decision not to indict me than to indict me.’” Yeah, ok, buddy.

California Scheming.

Transcripts emerge of Enron officials bragging about “stealing money from California…to the tune of a million bucks or two a day.” Whatsmore, it appears that former chairman and Bush buddy Ken Lay, who has not yet been charged with any Enrongate malfeasance, knew full well that his company was extorting millions from the likes of “Grandma Millie from California.” Shady.

Keeping Secrets, Keeping Suspects.

Slate‘s Dahlia Lithwick reports in on the Bush administration’s twin attempts before the Supreme Court to lock up US citizens and hide their shady energy deals indefinitely. Update: The Times and Post weigh in as well.

To Err is Human.

Investigators believe the blackout was caused by human error. Hmm…are they referring to the Palm Beach punchcards?

Blacked Out.

Issuing their final report on the energy task force controversy, the GAO lambasts Cheney for stonewalling their investigation. You’d think the recent blackout might prompt further review into exactly what exactly was going on and where all the money went.

Enron all over again?

Hmmm. Apparently FirstEnergy, the Ohio company at the heart of the blackout investigations, is headed by major Dubya donors. Why am I not surprised?

Forgotten Loot(ers).

Warriors, come out and play…With help from Columbia’s own KJ, David Greenberg attempts to explain the lack of NYC looters during the blackout, particularly as compared to the events of 1977. Also, in blackout news, the Dems (Edwards excepted) point the finger at Dubya’s lousy energy and infrastructure policies. Works for me.

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