Skip to main content

View Diary: How Shell is trying to send a chill through activist groups across the country (175 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  This seems to me to be a misstatement (33+ / 0-)

    of what the court is considering.  Here's what the diary says:  

    The case, Shell Offshore Inc. vs. Greenpeace, was filed by Shell Oil Company. Last summer, Shell assumed –based on conjecture — that Greenpeace USA would protest the company’s drilling in the Alaskan Arctic.  Shell asked the 9th Circuit court for a preemptive injunction and restraining order against Greenpeace USA [Full disclosure: Philip Radford is the executive director of Greenpeace USA].

    Despite Greenpeace’s appeal, the court granted the injunction for the entire duration of the drilling period, a decision which effectively gave a federal blessing to the company’s wish to do its controversial work in secret.

    When I read that, I was appropriately outraged -- how can a party get an injunction to prevent a group from "protesting"?  After all, we all have a right to protest whatever we want, as long as we are on public property and obey regular time, place and manner laws.

    I couldn't imagine how a Court justified an injunction against "protestsing." So, I decided to look at the link in the diary, and I found this in the first paragraph:

    The panel affirmed the district court’s preliminary injunction, which prohibited Greenpeace USA from coming within a specified distance of vessels involved in an oil company’s exploration of its Arctic Outer Continental Shelf leases and from committing various unlawful and tortious acts against those vessels as they journeyed from shore-based facilities in the United States, through United States territorial waters, and into the waters of the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone, where rigs attach to the Arctic seabed and conduct exploration activities.
    And the opinion goes on to identify the kind of activity being enjoined:  
    But “stop Shell” is not merely a campaign of words and images. Greenpeace USA also uses so-called “direct actions” to achieve its goals, and its general counsel has conceded that direct action can include illegal activity. There is evidence  that Greenpeace USA and its counterparts around the globe  are united in the goal of stopping Shell. When Greenpeace activists forcibly boarded an oil rig off the coast of Greenland in 2010 and used their bodies to impede a drilling operation, Greenpeace USA’s executive director described their conduct as “bold non-violent direct action” by “our activists.”

    Greenpeace USA similarly endorsed the forcible boarding of a Shell vessel by Greenpeace New Zealand activists in
    February 2012, again referring to them as “our brave activists.”

    The record before the district court contained evidence
    that Greenpeace activists used illegal “direct action” to
    interfere with legal oil drilling activities on many such
    occasions. Several incidents involved Shell vessels that were subsequently named in the district court’s preliminary injunction order and used in Shell’s 2012 Arctic OCS drilling operation.

    The opinion goes on to list other things that happened, including boarding vessels and stopping operations.  It is very clear that it is this activity -- forcible boarding of vessels and interfering with operations -- that is the subject of the injunction, not, as the diary says, "protests."  

    The First Amendment does not give anyone a right to "commit unlawful and tortious acts" against the property of another.  It seems to me that this is not an injunction against "protesting."  

    If this really were an injunction against "protesting," I'd be behind you 100%, as I am a strong supporter of the First Amendment.

    •  Thanks so much for that, coffeetalk. (13+ / 0-)

      "Compassion is not weakness, and concern for the unfortunate is not socialism." Hubert H. Humphrey

      by Onomastic on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 07:53:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It's too bad the diarist chose to chum (10+ / 0-)

      DK waters rather than discuss actual issues.

      "We're now in one of those periods when the reality of intense pressure on the middle class diverges from long-held assumptions of how the American bargain should work" --James Fallows

      by Inland on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 08:22:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Thanks coffeetalk - I knew there was more (9+ / 0-)

      to the decision but hadn't yet looked deeper. My first thought was that there was a safety issue that was likely part of the case. I had no idea that GreenPeace was actually boarding Shell ships and oil rigs. That's a criminal act, not protesting.

      "let's talk about that"

      by VClib on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 08:57:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  So now you're against any illegal protest (4+ / 0-)

        and civil disobedience is bad too.

        Good to know.

        If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

        by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 10:01:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm not against civil disobedience (8+ / 0-)

          But those who engage in it know they are flouting the law and they accept the consequences for it.

          Resisting Shell is great, but why would anyone be surprised that blocking their vessels will lead to arrests?

          •  This isn't about leading to arrests (10+ / 0-)

            The protest is already illegal and they are already risking arrest. I don't see how making it more illegal is a good thing. This ruling could totally be used to restrain civil disobedience prior to it being used. Something similar was used against people blockading Keystone XL, although in that case the organization involved was sued for damages and then backed off out of necessity after making a deal. I don't know that this diary really explains the problem very well.

            If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

            by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 10:21:51 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I get the Minority Report Pre-Crime Overtones (7+ / 0-)

              Getting a pre-emptive restraining order against illegal acts is somewhat frightening.  And I see that there is concern that it could spill over soon into restraining orders against arguably legal acts.

              I guess I'm more alarmed by abuses like the caged "free speech zones" at the political conventions of the past, the non-disclosure agreements virtually all companies force employees to sign, the corporatization of the media, the resounding media silence when the 2000 election was stolen and the farcical Iraq WMD claims were so shamefully staged. . .

              It's a long list.  But you are so right that we are not a culture that engages in robust free speech that (a) describes reality and (b) submits reality to the scrutiny of basic critical reason.

              We're awash in oligarchic fluff jobs and silly info-tainment.  It ain't pretty.

        •  The purpose of civil disobedience is (5+ / 0-)

          DISOBEDIENCE.  You're not disobeying anything if there are no consequences or punishments.  

          It seems absurd to me to say that you want to engage in civil disobedience but don't want to suffer the consequences of disobeying.  The power of disobedience is its illegality.  

        •  AoT - the difference between trespasing (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          johnny wurster, nextstep, ban nock

          on land and boarding ships and oil rigs out in the open seas is that actions in the open sea put the employees of Shell in danger. I am not against civil disobedience, or even illegal protests, but those participating should be prepared to go to jail. If the protest causes property damage those responsible should also be liable for the cost of repairs.

          There are lots of ways to protest without breaking the law.  

          "let's talk about that"

          by VClib on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 10:47:48 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  This isn't only about the safety issue (6+ / 0-)

            and the case wasn't decided on the safety issue. This is applicable to other situations, and an injunction has been filed against some Keystone XL protesters as well on similar ground.

            I am not against civil disobedience, or even illegal protests, but those participating should be prepared to go to jail. If the protest causes property damage those responsible should also be liable for the cost of repairs.
            And they are liable for arrest and for damages already. This doesn't change any of that.

            This ruling could have been used as a prior restraint to the segregated lunch counter sit ins.

            If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

            by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 11:12:27 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  This IS about the safety issue. (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              VClib, samddobermann, CalGal47, murrayewv

              The only way you can get an injunction is to show the potential for irreparable harm - that if you wait and sue, dollars won't be an adequate remedy.  In order to issue the injunction, the Court had to specifically find that there was, in this case, the potential for irreparable harm.

              The Court's finding on irreparable harm is about the safety issue:

              2. Likelihood of Irreparable Harm

              The district court concluded that Shell demonstrated a
              likelihood of irreparable harm absent injunctive relief because “illegal or tortious efforts to board or interfere with [its] vessels would be likely to present unacceptable risks to human life, property and the environment.” Shell Offshore, 864 F. Supp. 2d at 851 (internal quotation marks omitted). In  support of these findings, the court considered evidence that actions of the sort undertaken by Greenpeace activists against Shell vessels in New Zealand, Finland, and Greenland pose risks to the safetyof activists and vessel occupants alike. The court also found – and Greenpeace USA does not dispute – that “if Greenpeace USA successfully disrupted Shell’s operation, calculating the amount of economic harm would be very difficult.” Id.
              Greenpeace USA offers nothing beyond conclusory
              statements and case summaries in support of its one-sentence argument that the “likelihood of future injury is speculative and cannot be based on matters that occurred in 1997, or that 8 involved entities that are not Greenpeace USA.” The record provides ample support for the conclusion that Greenpeace USA has either undertaken directly, or embraced as its own, tactics that include forcible e boarding of vessels at sea and the use of human beings as impediments to drilling operations. We find  it too plain for debate that such tactics at minimum pose a serious risk of harm to human life, particularly if attempted in the extreme conditions of the Arctic Ocean, and that such harm could find no adequate remedy at law.

              •  It is not only about the (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Words In Action, FishOutofWater

                safety issue. Otherwise they wouldn't be using the tactic elsewhere.

                If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

                by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 01:57:26 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Obviously, you are ignoring the law. (5+ / 0-)

                  You can't get an injunction without a showing of the potential for irreparable harm.  That's black letter law.  Period.  End of story.  

                  A lot of the oil and gas industry is inherently dangerous.  Oil and gas can easily blow up and burn.  That's the nature of the beast.  That means that if people who don't know what they are doing start messing with it, the chances of it blowing up increase.  That's true even on land.  It's doubly true in the middle of the ocean.  

                  •  In other words (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Words In Action

                    they are using this across the industry, like I said. So it's rather convenient that it's "about the safety" of a business that's in the business of killing us all.

                    If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

                    by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 02:10:34 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  No, not "across the industry." (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      VClib, 1BQ, CalGal47

                      If you want to protest outside a refinery, that's not an "irreparable harm" situation.  If you want to protest outside of Shell's offices, that's not an irreparable harm situation.  That's protest.  That's what I thought this diary was about.  Instead, when I read the opinion, it was about people forcing their way onto vessels and rigs putting the lives and safety of the workers on those vessels and rigs in danger.  

                      It's when people who don't know what they are doing try to forcibly take physical take control of things -- like vessels, rigs, or pipelines -- that are inherently dangerous that you get into the irreparable harm area.

                      •  Yeah, and neither of those will do anything (3+ / 0-)

                        You want us to keep taking actions that have proven useless again and again. I'm sick of the constant refrain of "it's illegal" when anyone hits on an effective tactic. This issue is kind of fucking important. How old are you? I'm going to have to deal with this personally, as will my nieces and nephews even more so. But no one should take any effective action, god forbid. Just march in circles again and again so everyone can tell us how useless protest is.

                        Don't worry, they'll figure out away to abuse this ruling too. The rule of law is for little people, didn't you hear.

                        If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

                        by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 02:21:27 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  So the only "effective action" is to put people's (6+ / 0-)

                          lives and safety in danger?  It's worth risking the lives and safety of the people who work on those rigs and vessels for you to make a point -- and you can't make that point any other way?

                          I am NOT telling anybody not to protest.  I fully support the right of everyone to protest.  I AM saying that protesting is completely different from deliberately putting the lives and safety of ordinary, working people (the workers on those vessels and rigs) in danger so that you can make a point.

                          •  None of this is to "make a point" (4+ / 0-)

                            It's to stop the actions that are killing the planet. And of course you aren't telling anyone not to protest, you're just saying that any direct action against building pipelines or other carbon extraction infrastructure will risk lives and so we should march around in circles or go get arrested in some useless show in front of the white house.

                            And you aren't really saying any of that. So I'm sorry for aiming all of this at you because I don't mean to make it personal. But that's how the system works now. No one actually does anything they can be blamed for and it just keeps getting worse and more of us are going to be killed because of it. We've built a giant edifice devoted to removing the personal responsibility of those who are destroying our world and then telling people who are trying to stop it that they are going to hurt people when they take effective action.

                            And we do the same thing with the economy.

                            Sigh.

                            If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

                            by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 02:43:38 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

        •  All the yawners work for the plutocracy for (3+ / 0-)

          which they stand, whether they get paid for it or not.

          Add the median effective tax rate, healthcare costs (20%?), education costs, and other things guaranteed in Denmark & Sweden, we pay MORE for LESS. Somebody's gotta pay the billionaires. They don't grow on trees. ☮ ♥ ☺

          by Words In Action on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 11:38:10 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, that is the line these folks are taking (0+ / 0-)

          Apparently they are not happy with civil disobedience. I guess they love the status quo so much they want to defend it to the end.

          American Television is a vast sea of stupid. -xxdr zombiexx

          by glitterscale on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 05:47:37 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Not exactly. The injunction (17+ / 0-)
      barred Greenpeace from:
      a. Breaking into or trespassing on [specified] vessels;
      b. Tortiously or illegally interfering with the
      operation, movement or progress of [specified]
      vessels;
      c. Barricading, blocking, or preventing access to or
      egress from [specified] vessels;
      d. Tortiously or illegally endangering or threatening
      any employee, contractor or visitor of Shell or any
      of its affiliates who is present on, or as they enter
      or exit, [specified] vessels
      Wouldn't B encompass any activity that could be construed to interfere with the "progress" or "operation" of the specified ships, e.g., protests at the company's  headquarters that kept their people from going to work?

      Wouldn't "C" be a subjective opinion (e.g, "I feel threatened!") subject to just about any type of behavior the protesters could come up with? And if it needs to be "tortious," how can a protester be guided by what is  or is not tortious, if it's undefined?

      In other words, is an injunction against "tortious interference" with business or "tortious endangerment or threatening" appropriate where the tort is undefined and hasn't even occurred?

      •  Correct. (5+ / 0-)

        The norm for tortious acts is that offenders are sued.

        Preventive arrest is normally done only for criminal acts.

        This ruling turns that on its head.

        Further, it's completely one-sided. The flip would be preventive arrests of Shell executives, to prevent them from polluting the Arctic. We all know how likely that is.

        "What could BPossibly go wrong??" -RLMiller "God is just pretend." - eru

        by nosleep4u on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 01:12:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No. Read the opinion. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          VClib, CalGal47

          The reason these illegal and tortious acts merited an injunction was because of irreparable harm -- someone could be hurt or killed as a result of people forcing their way onto these vessels or rigs, and that is what can't be adequately compensated with money. In order to get an injunction, you have to show a likelihood of irreparable harm of the other side does the illegal or tortious thing.  Here's what the Court said:  

          2. Likelihood of Irreparable Harm

          The district court concluded that Shell demonstrated a
          likelihood of irreparable harm absent injunctive relief because “illegal or tortious efforts to board or interfere with [its] vessels would be likely to present unacceptable risks to human life, property and the environment.” Shell Offshore, 864 F. Supp. 2d at 851 (internal quotation marks omitted). In  support of these findings, the court considered evidence that actions of the sort undertaken by Greenpeace activists against Shell vessels in New Zealand, Finland, and Greenland pose risks to the safetyof activists and vessel occupants alike. The court also found – and Greenpeace USA does not dispute – that “if Greenpeace USA successfully disrupted Shell’s operation, calculating the amount of economic harm would be very difficult.” Id.
          Greenpeace USA offers nothing beyond conclusory
          statements and case summaries in support of its one-sentence argument that the “likelihood of future injury is speculative and cannot be based on matters that occurred in 1997, or that 8 involved entities that are not Greenpeace USA.” The record provides ample support for the conclusion that Greenpeace USA has either undertaken directly, or embraced as its own, tactics that include forcible e boarding of vessels at sea and the use of human beings as impediments to drilling operations. We find  it too plain for debate that such tactics at minimum pose a serious risk of harm to human life, particularly if attempted in the extreme conditions of the Arctic Ocean, and that such harm could find no adequate remedy at law.

          •  As if there's no likelihood of harm by the (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            samanthab, burlydee, KenBee, Tonedevil

            Rigs and the vessels and the oil on people or the planet.

            This is the sick and twisted thinking of people who work so closely in establishment circles that they are compromised both not being able or inclined to see the lunacy of these situations.

            Add the median effective tax rate, healthcare costs (20%?), education costs, and other things guaranteed in Denmark & Sweden, we pay MORE for LESS. Somebody's gotta pay the billionaires. They don't grow on trees. ☮ ♥ ☺

            by Words In Action on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 03:49:02 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Hilarious. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Tonedevil

            Show me an injunction against Shell destroying the planet, they maybe you've got half an argument.

            "What could BPossibly go wrong??" -RLMiller "God is just pretend." - eru

            by nosleep4u on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 01:54:50 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  greenpeace never committed the acts attributed to (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jfromga, Words In Action

      them in them, and yet are being moved to free speech zones. Yeah,that's not right.

      Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell. --Edward Abbey

      by greenbastard on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 09:14:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I agree with the dissent (12+ / 0-)

      Shell did not show that Greenpeace USA was likely to commit illegal acts in the future.  The court imputed the actions of independent organizations to Greenpeace USA.  I've never seen a court do that before.  There is just not a strong basis for a preliminary injunction here.  The fact that other Greenpeace organizations have interrupted Shell operations before and that the stated goal of Greenpeace USA is to stop Shell Artic drilling doesn't give rise to the basis for a preliminary injunction.

      Plus all the acts Greenpeace USA is accused of engaging in the future are already illegal.  I just don't see a necessary basis for relief here.  

    •  Heh (12+ / 0-)

      Big Oil gets to destroy entire ecosystems and the lives of millions of humans, but that's okay.

      Just don't anyone dare to peacefully try and stop them. That's a CRIME!

    •  So they are getting an injunction (9+ / 0-)

      to stop an illegal protest from happening?

      How does that work? It's already illegal. Is it like, double-plus illegal now?

      And something being illegal doesn't make it not a protest. If this were around in the fifties and sixties it could have been used to stop the lunch counter sit ins. Breaking the law as part of a protest have a long tradition in the US.

      If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

      by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 09:59:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Disobeying a court order can be punished (6+ / 0-)

        by contempt.  It's a stronger punishment than just waiting for them to break the law and then pursuing criminal/civil action against them.  

        •  To clarify...without an injunction, protestors (12+ / 0-)

          can go ahead and board the ships/destroy property/whatever and then try to defend in court (either criminal or civil).  They can try and defend on the merits (we didn't do it/it wasn't illegal if we did) or try and defend as a matter of law (the First Amendment protects boarding Shell's ships forcibly).  

          The same is not true of disobeying an injunction.  Disobeying a court order can be punished by contempt, even if enjoined conduct, upon closer review, was actually lawful.  You can't be punished for the conduct itself, but you can be punished for disobeying the injunction.  The enjoined party can, of course, appeal the issuance of the injunction.  

          The thought behind an injunction is that, for whatever reason, you're likely to suffer some harm that cannot be redressed in the typical way.  Say my neighbor keeps trying to say a part of my property really belongs to him - he's saying the dividing line is 20 feet over.  If I have a 200 year old redwood in that disputed zone, I can get an injunction to keep him from chopping it down.  The idea is if he goes ahead and destroys the tree, that can't be undone - there's no way I'm getting my tree back and it's difficult to really compensate me for my injury.  He can go ahead and try and show that it's really HIS property, but if he cuts down the tree in the meantime, he can be held in contempt, even if at the end of the day it turns out the tree really was on his property.  

          •  Thanks for the longer explanation (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            shaharazade, Words In Action

            In practical terms this means more jail time or a larger fine as well as a chance of getting arrested before anything even happens.

            If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

            by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 10:47:12 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well...not quite. It does mean more jail time, (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              johnny wurster, ban nock, VClib

              potentially.  It doesn't mean getting arrested before anything happens...I'm not sure what you mean by that?

              •  Well, they have a stay away order and (4+ / 0-)

                if they get to close they can be arrested, no?

                From the ruling

                The panel affirmed the district court’s preliminary
                injunction, which prohibited Greenpeace USA from coming
                within a specified distance of vessels
                Unless I'm misreading it that means that they are barred from getting too close to the vessel and face arrest if they do. So it's more than barring them from various illegal acts, it makes it an arrestable offence to get close to the ship, that's the equivalent of making it illegal for a specific group to come near a place they want to protest. So similar reasoning could be used to preempt planned civil disobedience. This has already in the courts in the case of civil disobedience against Keystone XL. I won't be surprised if this ruling, if it stands, is used as precedent in that case.

                If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

                by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 11:01:40 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Ok, I understand what you mean. They can be (4+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  AoT, VClib, burlydee, samddobermann

                  arrested for violating the injunction, even if they haven't actually boarded the ship yet or whatever.  

                •  No one gets arrested for violating an injunction (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  samddobermann, CalGal47

                  It's a civil, not a criminal matter.

                  If Shell thinks GP USA is in violation of the order, it's got to go back to Court on a Motion to Show Cause, which gives GP the opportunity to come in and explain why they're not in violation.  The judge then rules on the motion; if Shell "wins," then GP would be held in contempt.  Contempt could include incarceration, but that's incredibly rare.  And it would happen in the courtroom; no one is ever going to go out and arrest protesters on the scene using an injunction as the authority to so do.  That's not reality.

                  Note also that GP, which is a corporate entity, is the party that's enjoined.  What the Shell lawyers will do if they're smart is find the actual individuals who they think are likely to engage in the enjoined activities and give them actual notice of the injunction.  They need to do this to bind those folks -- the direct action protesters -- to the terms of the injunction.  They'll pass that Court order out like candy at Halloween, and you can bet that the Order is posted all over their docks and other facilities where they're operating that drilling project from.

                  The reason you're seeing this tactic here and in the KXL operation is because it's incredibly effective.  Getting some protester cited for trespass is a pain in the neck and has proven ineffective.  There are plenty of folks willing to get and fight tickets and misdemeanor offenses.  But getting cross-wise with a Federal judge is serious business.  Breakign a law is one thing; ignoring a Court order is a whole 'nother kettle of fish.  

                  "There is nothing impossible to him who will try." -Alexander the Great

                  by The Octopus on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 12:13:22 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  That makes the injunction even more nonsensical. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Words In Action

            The situation in question has no parallel of your hypothetical 200-year redwood. Shell isn't doing anything they can't just try to do again. The oil will still be there.

            "What could BPossibly go wrong??" -RLMiller "God is just pretend." - eru

            by nosleep4u on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 01:17:08 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  The problem isn't that the oil is going (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              coffeetalk, VClib, samddobermann

              to be destroyed/disappear, its the risk to people and property that comes along with GP attempting to forcibly board a ship in the middle of the Arctic Ocean.  No one is pretending the oil is going to dry up.  

              •  As if there are no risks in the activities (0+ / 0-)

                In which Shell is engaging, only the protesters? You see how sick and twisted that is? And yet it makes perfect sense in the non-sensical established culture of commerce and justice the plutocracy has created to protect itself from sane consideration or redress.

                Add the median effective tax rate, healthcare costs (20%?), education costs, and other things guaranteed in Denmark & Sweden, we pay MORE for LESS. Somebody's gotta pay the billionaires. They don't grow on trees. ☮ ♥ ☺

                by Words In Action on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 03:55:13 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  So it is double plus illegal now. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Words In Action

          Because it's a protest.

          If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

          by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 10:44:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  No, because it's dangerous and illegal activity (4+ / 0-)

            Look, Shell would not have gotten the injunction if it was just inconvenient.  If you read the opinion, as in all injunction matters, Shell had to show not only that it was likely to succeed on the merits (that forcibly boarding its vessels and rigs in the open water was illegal and/or tortious) but ALSO that it would suffer irreparable harm -- that there would not be an adequate remedy if Shell waited, they did forcibly boarded the vessels and rigs, and then sued for money.  If it can be remedied with money, it's not irreparable harm.  The reason the court found there was irreparable harm is because the actions enjoined were dangerous and put people's lives at stake, as well as increased the risk of environmental damage from the rigs they were interfering with:  

            2. Likelihood of Irreparable Harm
            The district court concluded that Shell demonstrated a
            likelihood of irreparable harm absent injunctive relief because “illegal or tortious efforts to board or interfere with [its] vessels would be likely to present unacceptable risks to human life, property and the environment.” Shell Offshore, 864 F. Supp. 2d at 851 (internal quotation marks omitted). In  support of these findings, the court considered evidence that actions of the sort undertaken by Greenpeace activists against Shell vessels in New Zealand, Finland, and Greenland pose risks to the safetyof activists and vessel occupants alike. The court also found – and Greenpeace USA does not dispute – that “if Greenpeace USA successfully disrupted Shell’s operation, calculating the amount of economic harm would be very difficult.” Id.

            Greenpeace USA offers nothing beyond conclusory
            statements and case summaries in support of its one-sentence argument that the “likelihood of future injury is speculative and cannot be based on matters that occurred in 1997, or that 8 involved entities that are not Greenpeace USA.” The record provides ample support for the conclusion that Greenpeace USA has either undertaken directly, or embraced as its own, tactics that include forcible e boarding of vessels at sea and the use of human beings as impediments to drilling operations. We find  it too plain for debate that such tactics at minimum pose a serious risk of harm to human life, particularly if attempted in the extreme conditions of the Arctic Ocean, and that such harm could find no adequate remedy at law.

            •  I love it, Shell arguing (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              emal, Words In Action

              that they should be able to stop something because the results can't be adequately remedied with money. The irony hurts.

              Thank you for the clarification though.

              It's double plus illegal because the potential results can't be fixed with money.

              If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

              by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 01:44:29 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Irony? Because people can get killed (4+ / 0-)

                on offshore rigs?  

                That's irony?  

                When people die, they can't be compensated through money.  That's "irreparable harm."  That's what justifies an injunction.  Because if someone is killed because these people are trying to force their way onto a vessel or rig in the middle of the ocean, money can't adequately compensate for that.    

                Offshore rigs are inherently dangerous environments.  People trying to force their way onto those rigs and and trying to physically disrupt what's going on makes that particular vessel or rig situation more dangerous, and make it more likely people on that vessel or rig will get hurt or die.  
                 

                •  No Irony because their actions (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Words In Action, burlydee, KenBee

                  are irreparably damaging the world for generations to come and they make money off of it.

                  If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

                  by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 02:04:11 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Fine. And if you want them to stop, (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    VClib, CalGal47

                    you don't use methods that put the lives and safety of people in danger.  

                    •  Yes, and they've set it up (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Words In Action, burlydee

                      so that there's no effective way to stop it that doesn't include direct action against their construction.

                      Convenient, isn't it.

                      If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

                      by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 02:17:36 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  How does direct action... (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        coffeetalk, samddobermann

                        ...against their construction stop it?  

                        Seems like with the money they stand to make, they can afford to fix anything you can break.

                        •  That's why you keep doing it (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Words In Action, burlydee, KenBee

                          We have managed to stop the clear cutting of old growth redwoods here in California for more than a decade using these methods. It's not breaking things that they're trying to stop, it's getting in the way. At least with Keystone XL.

                          If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

                          by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 02:36:08 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  Especially because there are so many willing to (0+ / 0-)

                          Let it be so, if not actively helping it be so. So very many who otherwise claim to be on the good side, protecting the vulnerable, and not just people.

                          But they aren't.

                          Add the median effective tax rate, healthcare costs (20%?), education costs, and other things guaranteed in Denmark & Sweden, we pay MORE for LESS. Somebody's gotta pay the billionaires. They don't grow on trees. ☮ ♥ ☺

                          by Words In Action on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 04:14:39 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                  •  Why don't you do something (0+ / 0-)

                    besides repeating your claims ad infinitem? How about getting with an attorney and try to get an injunction against the oil companies including the tar sands folks on the grounds of the irreparable harm to the planet?

                    Or run for office. I would suggest start small.

                    I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

                    by samddobermann on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 05:38:00 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

    •  Drill, Baby, Drill!!! (3+ / 0-)

      We have a fairly long history of folks protesting stuff in this country by going places where they're not welcome.  Yes, they often end up in jail, regardless of whether their beliefs are right or wrong.  Pre-emptive injunctions are a step too far.

    •  Unnecessary injunction (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Words In Action, burlydee

      Past actions noted in the opinion were illegal.  No injunction against such activity is necessary since the controlling legislation is already in place.

      What the injunction really does is: (1)  legislate a protest-free area around a corporate activity, and (2) chill public protest against corporate activity which is demonstrably harmful to the environment in which Greenpeace (and the rest of us) live.

      Greenpeace activists are willing to be jailed (or worse) to protect this one part of the closed system in which we all live.

      "Terrorists' come in all flavors; some annoy corporate marauders; some employ our own government to terrify us into inaction.

      •  No. The Injunction was justified, just as with (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        VClib, CalGal47

        all injunctions, because of the likelihood of irreparable harm -- forcibly boarding vessels and rigs put the lives and safety of people in danger:

        2. Likelihood of Irreparable Harm
        The district court concluded that Shell demonstrated a
        likelihood of irreparable harm absent injunctive relief because “illegal or tortious efforts to board or interfere with [its] vessels would be likely to present unacceptable risks to human life, property and the environment.” Shell Offshore, 864 F. Supp. 2d at 851 (internal quotation marks omitted). In  support of these findings, the court considered evidence that actions of the sort undertaken by Greenpeace activists against Shell vessels in New Zealand, Finland, and Greenland pose risks to the safetyof activists and vessel occupants alike. The court also found – and Greenpeace USA does not dispute – that “if Greenpeace USA successfully disrupted Shell’s operation, calculating the amount of economic harm would be very difficult.” Id.
        Greenpeace USA offers nothing beyond conclusory
        statements and case summaries in support of its one-sentence argument that the “likelihood of future injury is speculative and cannot be based on matters that occurred in 1997, or that 8 involved entities that are not Greenpeace USA.” The record provides ample support for the conclusion that Greenpeace USA has either undertaken directly, or embraced as its own, tactics that include forcible e boarding of vessels at sea and the use of human beings as impediments to drilling operations. We find  it too plain for debate that such tactics at minimum pose a serious risk of harm to human life, particularly if attempted in the extreme conditions of the Arctic Ocean, and that such harm could find no adequate remedy at law.
        •  So coming within a certain (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Words In Action

          specified distance of them is dangerous?

          If debt were a moral issue then, lacking morals, corporations could never be in debt.

          by AoT on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 03:49:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  As if the protesters are the ONLY party engaged (0+ / 0-)

          In activity that may result in harm? More likely or of greater import than that of Shell? Listen to yourself.

          The reason global warming has advanced so far is because of such pedestrian, officious thinking as this. It makes it so much easier to simply say that actually dealing with it isn't pragmatic... You're right, according to the plutocracy's rule., nothing will or can be done about it. But who created those rules and who's protecting and defending them, thus preventing solutions???

          Add the median effective tax rate, healthcare costs (20%?), education costs, and other things guaranteed in Denmark & Sweden, we pay MORE for LESS. Somebody's gotta pay the billionaires. They don't grow on trees. ☮ ♥ ☺

          by Words In Action on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 04:02:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  What a suprise (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Words In Action

      the caffeinated corporate lawyer stands with Shell.  

    •  coffeetalk, don't bother us with (0+ / 0-)

      facts. We would rather become outraged and indignant to the max. That excuses us from working productively about getting anything changed.

      If 2014 goes like 2010 did it truly is all over.

      What is different about the hysteria and doomsday obsessing here from that on the red sites? Both seem to think that if Obama was gone everything would be just peachy.

      I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

      by samddobermann on Tue Jun 18, 2013 at 04:50:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site