What’s up with everyone putting out good stuff on Thanksgiving? While you nibble leftover cranberries, read this long, detailed, and very well written article about life in and around the Rubiales field in Colombia. And give thanks that you, hopefully, are not doing 21-day shifts in an oilfield for $550. Yes, $550 a month — about 5 barrels of crude, or about 2.5 seconds of output at the Rubiales field.
“The workers are assigned to concentration camps,” said Sebastian Bedoya, 60, a pipeline worker who said his temporary contract was not renewed after the company discovered his union activism. “You have to get up at 3 in the morning if you want to get a shower. Otherwise the line is too long and you can’t make it to breakfast at 5.
“You know what’s the worst? The company calls us to start work on a certain day, and when we arrive they make us wait another three or four days before we can start.”
So they wait in Puerto Gaitan, crashing in cheap motels, their anger building as they question where the $50 million in royalties are being spent.
PS: These are harsh tales! Reuters can expect a defamation suit from Pacific Rubiales Chairman Serafino Iacono any minute. Good thing they didn’t mention that his base pay is equal to that of 200 roughnecks. And that this year he has supplemented that with $12 million selling Pacific Rubiales stock (1,826 years of the roughneck’s salary).