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Fox Contributor Phil Flynn Repeats Debunked Cheney Lie About China Drilling Off the Coast of Florida

Reported by Melanie - June 16, 2008 -

Last Wednesday, speaking before the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Dick Cheney said, "George Will pointed out in his column the other day that oil is being drilled right now 60 miles off the coast of Florida. But we’re not doing it, the Chinese are, in cooperation with the Cuban government."

Seems like what George Will wrote in his column "the other day" was cooked up by the right, or maybe the oil companies (same thing), as a scare phrase for use by its minions to imply that the Commies are stealing oil out from under our nose so we better get down there and get it before they do. But oh, America, the Democrats won't open up offshore drilling so you are going to have pay out the wazoo for gas - and it's their fault!

Well, hours later, Neil Cavuto repeated Cheney's lie almost verbatim. At the same time, McClatchy (which employs actual journalists, unlike whatever Cavuto is) reported that the claim was "untrue."

The following day (last Thursday), Florida Republican Mel Martinez took to the Senate floor and refuted what he said was "akin to an urban legend." (See McClatchy link above).

Fast forward to today (June 16, 2008) - five days after Cheney lied (most recently, that we know of) - and to the first segment of Your World. Cavuto opened with a shot of a gas pump with the superimposed figure of $4.08 in the price window, and said, breathlessly,

The Saudis say that they are going to pump more oil over there and look what oil does here - soars to a new high before falling back. Gas hits a record, now $4.08 a gallon. Proof the only fix is to drill right here and now? Well, Phil Flynn says yes or start paying 6 bucks a gallon.

I've seen Phil Flynn of Alaron Trading on business news shows for years. You'd probably recognize him. He's the go-to guy for information about oil. He is now a "Fox business contributor."

Cavuto said so, "Do or die time, right?"

Flynn said, "Absolutely Neil. In fact, this market is screaming for more domestic oil production. You can tell just by the market activity." He said we need 1.5 to 2 million more barrels of oil per day in order to break even. "We need more oil and we need it now." "The entire Gulf of Mexico is an area that deserves more exploration and China's already drilling in the Gulf of Mexico; it's about time we did too."

Naturally, Cavuto, who adheres to Fox's version of "journalism," didn't correct him.

Comment: Flynn was quoted today in a CNNMoney article that was posted at almost exactly the same time he was lying to Fox's audience. In it he said, "'We're trading in skittish times.' ... Flynn called Monday morning's price jump 'unusual' and said the market may have also reacted nervously to news of a weakened dollar." What? What about drilling? Nothing.

Flynn eats, sleeps and breathes oil. He should know that the China drilling story is false. If he doesn't, he isn't doing his research job. Five days on and he still thinks it's true? I find that almost impossible to believe. What happens to these guys when they hire on at Fox? Apparently they're seduced into tossing their reputation out the window in order to feed the beast.