The Futility Monster

He'll pointlessly derive more enjoyment out of your resources than you

BP: Big Phuckup

Posted by The Futility Monster on June 1, 2010 @ 09:30

With the disaster in the Gulf in full, inexorable, flow, the blame game is well underway. BP. Obama. The whole US administration. Transocean, the actual owners of the rig. Even Dick “Dick” Cheney’s old friends Halliburton have some involvement as a sub-contractor. It’s a perfect storm for us lefties.

The oil spill can no longer be called that. It is certainly the worst US offshore oil disaster in history. Its disastrous impact on marine and avian life in the area affected by the spill will be felt for many years to come, and there’s no doubt that that too will have a knock on effect on industries based upon the sea in that area. No surprise so far.

Then there is the hindsight. Polls in America are starting to turn. No longer do they support off-shore oil drilling in such great numbers as they did. Remember Sarah Palin with her “Drill, baby, drill!” during the 2008 election? Well, now even her position is much more restrained, which is a shocker for her.

But the most disappointing aspect of it is that just a few weeks before the incident, Obama came out and reversed his own campaign policy and said that he was, after all, going to allow for an expansion of offshore drilling.

Though Obama is indeed having success as President, he has made a few misjudgements in his attempts to reach out towards a so-called “moderate” centre. In this case, he was rowing back on his oil drilling policies in order to get some Republican votes in the Senate for a climate change bill.

Now he just looks silly.

The moderate centre of the Republican Party in Congress does not exist, and hasn’t for some time. That was demonstrated during the healthcare saga, and yet Obama just will not seem to learn.

The same process is in train here. Obama is obviously not to blame for the oil deluge, but he is getting landed with it. Just as he sat on the sidelines during the major part of the healthcare debate, so as to not get tarred by the Senate’s indecision, he took too long before rolling-up his sleeves and getting his hands dirty sticking it to BP.

Nature, especially the media, abhors such vacuums. Into it steps a Republican Party disinformation campaign, and a PR exercise by BP worthy of whatever top prize the PR industry gives out. Anyone would think BP were the heroes, nobly coming in and cleaning up those oil-ridden shores. The BP Chief Executive is never off the airwaves in the US, giving a running commentary about the process as if he was some neutral, non-partisan expert. He isn’t.

Every crisis like this has an opportunity. The opportunity for Obama is to tell America that its suckling at the teat of the oil industry has to end. To tell the American people straight that the likes of BP are not to be given the easy ride that they are now in future.

BP are no doubt going to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on this operation.

But that shouldn’t allow them to be let off the hook.

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