Saturday Springboard

Saturday Springboard: Fracking + Groundhogs + Globetrotters + Guns

Photo Credit: nestor galina via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: nestor galina via Compfight cc

By Margaret Wright

  • The Harlem Globetrotters (the team actually originated in Chicago) make an appearance tonight at 7 p.m. at the Santa Ana Star Center. This fact sent me down a trivia rabbit hole: Magic Johnson played for the Globetrotters. Henry Kissinger and Pope John Paul were honorary members. Graceful legend Connie Hawkins, banned from the NBA for eight years during his prime, was a Globetrotter. The first woman on the team was Lynette Woodard, who served as co-captain of the 1984 Olympics gold medal-winning U.S. women’s basketball team. Players on the Globetrotter’s current roster include Fatima Maddox (a.k.a. TNT), the first woman recruited since 1993, and Paul “Tiny” Sturgess, an English chap so tall—just under 8 feet—that he can dunk without jumping.
  • Implications of the 2012 gun trial surrounding the Reese family of Deming have gotten even more complicated—this time for U.S. government prosecutors. Judge Robert Brack yesterday granted motions for a new trial for three of the four family members convicted of felony false statements in connection with a federal straw buying investigation. Brack based his decision on evidence that emerged late last year: Prosecutors withheld the fact that one of their key witnesses against the Reeses, Luna County Sheriff Deputy Alan Batts, was under federal investigation starting in 2002.  “There can be no doubt that the information pertaining to Deputy Batts was in a file at the United States Attorney’s Office for more than a decade prior to trial,” wrote Brack in a memorandum filed yesterday. He continued: “Regardless of the reason why the warnings went unheeded (or more darkly, were ignored), there is no doubt that the prosecution, intentionally or negligently, suppressed the evidence.”
  • Our cash-starved state gets a lot of money from the oil and gas industry: In November of last year alone, oil and gas lease sales netted $3.5 million for public services. But with the employment of aggressive drilling technology—including hydraulic fracturing or “fracking“—the public is grappling with tough questions about environmental and health costs associated with the exploitation of oil and gas resources. Those questions could have particular relevance here in New Mexico. The environmental group Earthworks reported last year that the state agency responsible for monitoring oil and gas drilling operations lacks inspectors and transparency, and that every year a majority of the state’s active wells don’t actually get inspected. Meanwhile, legislation proposed by state Rep. Brian Egolf (D-Santa Fe) requiring disclosure of the chemicals companies use for fracking made it through the first round of House committees yesterday. 

One thought on “Saturday Springboard: Fracking + Groundhogs + Globetrotters + Guns

  1. what I am curious about is what is the ratio of oil and gas production in NM vs. Alaska and once you discern that, what are the taxes collected in Alaska vs. NM for their respective permanent funds and once that is done, WHY is there a PFD in Alaska to all residents vs. NONE in New Mexico. Or do we not collect the money for it like Alaska does? If there should be a PFD in NM, how much is currently not being collected as that ratio and who benefits from the State of NM NOT collecting an extraction for annual distribution to its population.

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