More on Chevron

by Quin Hillyer

Kevin is right to call today’s ruling in the Chevron-Ecuador case a “remarkable” vindication of Chevron’s position and a remarkable rebuke for the American attorneys and their co-conspirators who, the judge makes clear, acted fraudulently in numerous ways to try to bilk Chevron/Texaco of an astonishing $16 billion. I’ve been writing about this case at various times for five publications spanning six years (sometimes as lead drafter of editorials, sometimes as a columnist), always thinking that my sense of outrage at the plaintiffs’ lawyers and at Ecuador could not grow any greater, only to find myself even more outraged with each new development. National Review readers should be familiar with the case by now, because NRO has featured numerous excellent updates.

I write now merely to add that this is NOT just a case of some anonymous, rich oil company avoiding being bilked. Two points: First, thousands upon thousands of American shareholder and pensioners would be hurt if Chevron ever were forced to pay this outrageous judgment. This is therefore something that should be of broader public interest. Second, the Obama administration long ago should have spoken up and put diplomatic pressure on Ecuador to stop this shakedown.

Kevin is absolutely correct: This putative case against Chevron, bogus from start to finish, is “one of the most spectacular attempts at extortion in recorded history.