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Chevron may be merging with Texaco, but it recently sought a much more unlikely partnership with the Federal Bureau of Prisons. In an August letter — obtained by Mother Jones and excerpted below — the oil company proposes converting its “uneconomic” offshore drilling platforms into high-security cell bocks. George Steinbach, Chevron’s decommissioning project manager, enthusiastically terms his proposal a “recycling opportunity.”

But in an interview with the magazine, David Dorworth, chief site selector at the Prison Bureau, was quick to torpedo the idea. “Ever since the movie Waterworld,” he says, “we seem to be getting an inordinate number of these suggestions. The bottom line is: Island-type facilities are not cost effective, they’re not safe, and they’re not practical. All these issues,” says Dorworth, “contributed to Alcatraz being closed.”

DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

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In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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