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Way back in spring 1989 just after the Exxon Valdez poured its load of foul toxic crude into the pristine waters of Alaska, Fat Albert Gore  was leading the charge against the oil companies.  Today, when matters in the Gulf are arguably worse, our oligarchical old Senator, ex Vice President and International Man of the Environment is nowhere to be seen.  How odd.  It’s most unusual for a politician of any hue to miss taking a shot at an open goal.  So what’s going on?

Its not that he’s been entirely silent.  He did one piece I can find.  Its entitled “The Crisis comes ashore: Why the oil spill could change everything”  It was reported in “The New Republic” and you can catch it here.  He did chide BP around about 15 June, for denying reporters access to public beaches to check if BP were removing the oil or just dumping lots of sand on top of it.

 It’s just that he’s gone awfully quiet since then.

And all of a sudden out of a clear blue sky comes one Molly Haggerty, a hotel bedroom in Portland, a set of messy pants and a story straight out of central casting!

The story, such as it is, is as follows.  Way back in 2006 Fat Al was up in a hotel in Portland, Oregon, and decided late one night that he fancied a massage.  He got the hotel to organise one and the said Molly Haggerty arrived with all the usual accoutrements.  What happened next is somewhat unclear.  To anyone actually.  Her story is that Fat Albert became overly excited at the sight of the 54 year old masseuse and made inappropriate advances, including the request to “release his second chakra” which she claims were unwanted and forceful.  In a shades of Monika moment she claims to have a pair of pants with the ex-VP’s DNA on them.   

She claimed he acted “like a crazed sex poodle”.  Wonderful!  What exactly is a “sex poodle”?  Is this an Americanism I have missed?  Is a “crazed” sex poodle different from a “tame”, “docile” or “laid back” sex poodle?  The opposite of sex kitten?  She said she “was wrapped in an inescapable embrace” which she seems to have managed to flee from whilst simultaneously clutching the table, the sheets, the unguents of her trade, and her clothes.  Not so inescapable then perhaps?

She was so overcome by this “attack” that she took until 2007 to report the matter, initially to the Police and then when asked to come in and talk to them, decided not to submit herself to interview and failed to attend the station or press charges.  By then she had washed the sheets, and didn’t give the Police the pants.  Not un-naturally the Police put this is the back drawer and closed the matter.

Then the case resurrected itself in January 2009.  The Police decided there was insufficient evidence to support the claims and back it goes in the drawer again.

Then suddenly, despite having been reviewed twice and found failing, the case reopens.  Why did the Police choose then to inform the DA?  Surely this case fell smartly into the “Crank Filter”?  Who is this DA anyway?  Who is Michael D Schrunk?  Why now?

The Police, after releasing Ms Haggerty’s one sided accusations – even though she refused to file an offense report, are now going to go all quiet whilst they “conduct their investigation”.  Now, that is going to take months and all the while Fat Albert is left fighting fires in all corners.  There have to be questions as to why a District Attorney gets himself  interested at all in what looks like a dead case.

Suddenly, months later, after who knows how many attempts to punt the story all over the shop for hard cash, she latches onto the “National Enquirer” in the hope of a $1,000,000 pay day which she doesn’t get, Haggerty opens herself to an investigation which will ask all sorts of nasty questions about her background, business practices, ethics etc.  No longer the spring chicken, you can bet your bottom dollar that this masseuse is no longer on the phone list of any Portland hotel, and so she has sacrificed at least some business for this case.  Why?  At bottom, what’s in it for her apart from character assassination and loss of money?  The case is pants (sorry) and will not go anywhere.  Has she been set up by cleverer minds?  What’s it all about?

And whilst she was touting this unlikely tale to the press and other interested parties, who else got to hear it was out there?

Because, about a month or so ago the oil industry watched in horror as one of its own, Tony Hayward CEO of BP, was subjected to a “shakedown” in front of a Congressional Committee.  Whilst not being a supporter at all of Big Oil, this unedifying spectacle did have strong elements of a McCarthyite show trial about it.  There were some very nasty overtones there.  I doubt any of the bosses of Big Oil think much of Hayward, whose only role now is to continue to take the arrows shot at him until they feel they can let him drop.  But Big Oil will not have enjoyed the attack.  I suspect they might have been looking for a way of firing a shot across the bows of the House to warn them off.  Something that shows they can reach anyone, no matter how high.

The whole thing is very fishy if not downright oily.

Copyright David Macadam 2010