Business: Wildcatters' Lament

In the U.S., rising oil prices have already touched off what is building up to be the biggest oilfield rush since the 1950s. Oilmen, particularly the independent operators, who do more than 80% of the exploratory drilling in the U.S. and off its shores, have been swarming across the country in search of promising new deposits and even returning to old oil hunting grounds in Texas, New Mexico and other states. More and more, however, they are making a painful discovery: it can be a lot easier to strike oil nowadays than get the pumps, piping and other paraphernalia needed to...

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