Wednesday, March 25, 2015


One of New Mexico's longest tenure journalists is retiring and it is sad to see.  John Roberston of the Journal, a fair minded reporter, has announced his departure.  He has been undergoing treatment for cancer and is doing well.  I  have known John since the 70's when newspapers mostly reported the news as fairly as they could.  He was a star in his profession.  He could write accurately because he always checked his facts and made sure no partisanship entered into his longtime role as a political reporter.  The Journal will miss his expertise.  If you want to read John's blog you will find a thoughtful piece just about every day.  See it here.

The oil and gas boys are trying to drum up support, via the Farmington Daily Times editorial board, to get royalty rates reduced on stripper wells in New Mexico.  They say they aren't feasible with the drop in oil prices.  If Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn does this he will violate his fiduciary responsibility.  And if you think about it, where were these oil boys when prices were outrageously high?  Were they offering to pay more royalties?

The NM GOP is hiring a new staff.  It doesn't appear that any Latinos were amongst the new leadership.  Maybe the party right wingers are worried about valid drivers licenses.


Vicki said...

I'll place a bet that Aubrey Dunn does lower their royalty rates because that was why the oil companies supported him.

Anonymous said...

John Robertson, NOW THAT IS A JOURNALIST with real integrity, not a self righteous ASSHOLE like Larry Barker who is now doing TV ads saying his reports "changes lives". Best wishes to John Robertson and his family and lets hope John will still do a bit of reporting now and than.

Bubba Muntzer said...

That editorial in the Farmington paper says they want the reduction in royalties to keep these wells pumping because if they have no reported production for 60 days they lose the lease.

A typical new well puts out around 750-1,000 barrels a day and these stripper wells put out around three. But they've already drilled the hole and put in the pipe and built the roads and everything and pretty much messed up one area, so it makes some sense to get the last of the oil out rather than drill a new well. I was taught growing up to clean my plate off.

But if they need these wells so badly they could just extend that 60 day period, then when they started pumping again we'd still get our royalties.

Or here's an idea: Let the free market decide. Have they heard about that?

I can only remember ever hearing one Capitalist who wasn't a hypocrite like that, when I was at the Texarkana Gazette, a guy who had a big farm out in the Red River bottoms told me the government should do away with farm subsidies. He said it would hurt in the short run but things would work out better in the long run.

It's usually unspoken but behind conservative philosophy is the notion that some people should be left to suffer and die but it will work out better in the long run -- unless of course it's them suffering and dying.

Just like Ted Cruz wants to do away with Obamacare as soon as his wife gets some health insurance through her job again.