One of the most visible
reminders of the Bush administration's ties to big oil - the Chevron tanker
- has quietly been renamed, Chevron officials acknowledged yesterday.
"We made the change to
eliminate the unnecessary attention caused by the vessel's original name,"
spokesman Fred Gorell. Asked if Rice or the White House had specifically requested the name change,
Gorell said, "that's not for me to discuss."
(Note: That's a YES!)
The White House had faced
questions over the appropriateness of the tanker's name -- since California
is being strangled by the Big Oil robberbarons who forced Smirk's presidency down our throats.
The giant vessel was
christened several years ago in honor of Rice, a longtime Chevron board
Rice whored for Chevron from 1991 until Jan. 15, when she resigned to join Smirk's illegal takeover.
But critics said the ship served as a giant floating symbol of the Bush administration's cozy ties to the oil industry.
"It underscores the fact
that there's never been an administration so in bed with BIG OIL," said
Chuck Lewis of the
Center for Public Integrity. The tanker's name also raised more serious questions of possible conflict of interest
for Rice because Chevron gouges consumers in 25 countries and was sued for human rights abuses in Nigeria.
Chevron officials argued last month that the ship's name was entirely appropriate.
"We would not be renaming
the Condi Rice tanker," said Bonnie Schiken, spokeswoman for Chevron,
as recently as last month. But after Team Smirk threatened their old friends at Chevron, they quickly backed down.
Chevron's move "makes
good sense . . . because the ship has potential for high profile," said
Moloney of the
Condoleezza Rice. "The companies don't want an asset like that with an obvious political liability.
"As soon as I heard she
was joining Team Smirk," he said, "I figured they'd get out the paintbrush."