It would appear that if you're an op-ed columnist at the New York Times, you can make up just about any outrageous claim and not get called on it by anyone responsible (if there is such a thing) at the Old Gray Lady.
The column in question, Joseph P. Kennedy II's "The High Cost of Gambling on Oil," goes back two weeks to April 10, but deserves a closer look for two reasons. First Kennedy, who wants to see "pure" speculation by those who are not actual industry participants completely banned (confirmed in the item's browser window title), claimed that oil "extraction" costs "average $11 a barrel worldwide." Second, Kennedy's concluding bio gives the impression that he is an energy industry mogul and not in fact the head of "a non-profit organization that primarily aids the poor in the United States and throughout the world ..." First, here is Kennedy's extraction cost claim (bolds are mine throughout this post):
When President Obama put off giving the go-ahead to build the Keystone Pipeline until after the 2012 election, it put the liberal media in a difficult position. Just about everyone from Big Labor to congressional Republicans to the states through which the Keystone would run agrees it would create thousands of jobs, strengthen ties with Canada and reduce dependency on oil from unstable and unfriendly nations.
Obama, who has yet to embrace a jobs scheme that actually produces jobs, bowed to the environmentalists and wealthy celebrity liberals who hate the Keystone Pipeline, which would run from Canada to the Gulf Coast. Journalists like CNN Money reporter Steve Hargreaves were left to defend the decision.