How dumb are they?
They are so dumb, I bet the Big Gas Mafia puts a contract out on them.
A Texas oil-and-gas lawyer who probably figured he was using a crafty defense technique during a recent deposition may have shot his whole industry — or local governments — in the foot. Decatur resident Tim Ruggiero sued Aruba Petroleum after the company drilled on his 10-acre property and spewed so many toxins that Ruggiero says it made family members sick and reduced their property’s value from $300,000 to $78,000. When Ruggiero sued for damages, the gas company attorney argued that the property should never have been valued at $300,000. His reasoning: The land should have been valued at $78,000, because the owner didn’t own the mineral rights and the land was therefore vulnerable to drilling. In other words, a gas company could have come along and drilled on the property at any time, so the property value should have reflected that.