From Dr. Mercola:
“How Big Oil Conquered the World” is a brilliant piece of investigative journalism presented by James Corbett,1 revealing the immense extent to which the oil industry has shaped and is ruling the world as we know it.
“From farm to pharmaceutical, diesel truck to dinner plate, pipeline to plastic product, it is impossible to think of an area of our modern-day lives that is not affected by the petrochemical industry.
The story of oil is the story of the modern world. And this is the story of those who helped shape that world, and how the oil-igarchy they created is on the verge of monopolizing life itself.”
Corbett carefully details the sordid back story of today’s “oiligarchy.” While most people are well-acquainted with the Rockefeller name, few probably know the true history of the Rockefellers’ rise to power.
Big Oil — An Industry Founded on Treachery and Deceit
As noted by Corbett, certain details of the Big Oil story are well known. Others are more obscure. The story begins in rural New York state in the early 19th century, with William Avery Rockefeller, an authentic “snake oil salesman” going by the fictional name of “Dr. Bill Livingston.”
While neither a doctor nor a cancer specialist, Rockefeller, aka “Dr. Livingston,” aka “Devil Bill,” traveled the country’s back roads conning people into buying his “Rock Oil” tonic for cancer — “a useless mixture of laxative and petroleum that had no effect whatsoever,” according to Corbett.
William Avery Rockefeller fathered numerous children with three women, and took the name Livingston after being indicted for rape in 1849. One of those children was John D. Rockefeller, who became the world’s first billionaire after founding Standard Oil.
As noted by Corbett:
“When he wasn’t running away from them or disappearing for years at a time, [William Avery Rockefeller] would teach his children the tricks of his treacherous trade. He once bragged of his parenting technique: ‘I cheat my boys every chance I get. I want to make ’em sharp’ …
The world we live in today is the world created in ‘Devil’ Bill’s image. It’s a world founded on treachery, deceit, and the naïveté of a public that has never wised up to the parlor tricks that the Rockefellers and their ilk have been using to shape the world for the past century and a half.”
The Birth of the Oil Industry
Another character with a similarly dubious background is “Colonel” Edwin Drake, an unemployed railroad conductor who managed to secure himself a job with the Pennsylvania Rock Oil Company after running into the founders, George Bissell and James Townsend, at a hotel.
The title “Colonel” was bestowed on him by Bissell and Townsend, who thought it might help him “win the respect of the locals” as he went about the company’s business, collecting Seneca oil, which the company distilled into kerosene (lamp oil).
His mission was to collect enough Seneca oil to make the business profitable