TLM has been dying ever since it was forced to sell its fantastic Sudan project by the self-righteous churches and other equally-misguided pinheads. That sale not only seved no purpose whatsoever, it forced TLM to redeploy capital into poorly-understood, high-risk areas much too quickly, and an extended period of costly exploration failure was the result.
With an asset like Sudan in this oil price environment, TLM would have been fine, and would not have been compelled to make such rash strategic moves. In fact, it could very easily been an acquiror of other distressed assets...what if.
So thanks, church hypocrites. You enjoyed your 15 minutes of fame, you ultimately did no one in Sudanmuch more harm than good, you instigated the downfall of a very valueable, well-run, ethical company, and you skulked away back into the shadows without having to answer for it since. A perfect grift.
I should clarify one thing...TLM could have issued a juicy special dividend after the Sudan sale, and in retrospect, clearly should have. But companies, in their hubris, do not usually "give back" money. Capitalism is hardly perfect.
Buckee was not a humble man, and sitting around, extremely vulnerable to a takeover was not on. And that's too bad.