BP And Obama And The World’s Largest Man Made Environmental Disaster

(10PM EST – promoted by Nightprowlkitty)

We’ve all had a month to stew about this.  The Gulf of Mexico is slowly turning into a petroleum gumbo laced with oil coated pelicans and dead dolphins.  We’ve been watching a slow motion train wreck.  Except it’s not just two colliding steam engines.  No.  No such luck. It’s the Gulf of Mexico, teaming with life, and its currents are moving the spilled oil around.  Eventually it will be everywhere.  And while we’re watching that unfold, and seeing clumps of tar and oil all over the beaches, we are beginning to suspect that, hard as it is to believe, maybe nobody, that’s right nobody, knows how to plug the leak.  And stop the spill.  So we’re going to have to watch a colossal ecological disaster we are utterly helpless to stop.  Or mitigate.  The signs are already everywhere, preparing us for a spectacle of wildlife and oceanic death, slowly breaking to us the very bad news we really don’t want to hear.

Just look at this from AP:

Oil spill frustration is rampant.

The White House is being pounded for not acting more aggressively in the month-old oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. The administration is hitting back, mostly at BP. Louisiana is threatening to take matters into its own hands. The truth is, the government has little direct experience at either the national or state level at stopping deepwater oil leaks – and few realistic options.

With the oil flowing and spreading at a furious rate, President Barack Obama has accused BP of a “breakdown of responsibility.” He named a special independent commission to review what happened.

But the administration seems to want to have it both ways – insisting it’s in charge while also insisting that BP do the heavy lifting. The White House is arguing that government officials aren’t just watching from the sidelines, but also acknowledging there’s just so much the government can do directly.

“They are 5,000 feet down. BP or the private sector alone have the means to deal with that problem down there. It’s not government equipment that is going to be used to do that,” Coast Guard Commandant Thad Allen told a White House briefing on Monday.

This is a recipe for a most horrible outcome.  Our frustration today is absolutely nothing compared to what is coming.  What is coming is the largest man made environmental disaster in history.  This is going to make Chernobyl look like Three Mile Island.  This is going to make Exxon Valdez and Santa Barbara look like a joke.

The administration has stated that it is going to have “a special independent commission” “review what happened.”  But I don’t need no stinking commission to know what happened.  We’ve been over it and over it and over it.  That’s all back story anyway.  If the Gulf of Mexico dies, as surely it will from enough oil, “what happened” is going to be the least of anyone’s concerns.  It’s going to be a footnote in a narration of the extensive misery and suffering that the spill has caused.

Meanwhile, the Secretary of the Interior supposedly has his foot on the throat of BP.  And the government continues to rely on oil company “expertise” to deal with the spill.  But the Interior Department was still apparently granting permits for underwater drilling even after he declared a moratorium on that.  And we’re already being told that the feds can supervise and direct BP, but that they aren’t capable to doing anything on their own.  Look at this.  The Coast Guard’s guy who’s in charge of this federal emergency response is saying that it’s BP or the private sector that has “the means to deal with that problem”, not the government.  If you kick them out of the way, who will take over?  Nobody, he claims. I asked before and I ask again, whether this is the first time that a claimed foot on the throat has been confused with fellatio.

No, the administration isn’t going to elbow BP aside.  Ever.  Absolutely not.  No matter what.  We’re already being told that BP, the fourth largest corporation in the world, has all the “means to deal with that problem,” and that the rest of us can just sit here and watch the largest man made ecological disaster in history slowly, but inexorably unfold.  And the expertise, we’re being told, is all in the hands of the oil companies.  They’re doing, so we’re told, all they can do.

There are some very, very smart people in the United States.  I’d like to tell you that they can be quickly called together to solve this problem.  That it’s that big a disaster that unconventional approaches are required.  But I don’t think that’s going to happen.  I don’t think the administration will take over the efforts to close the spill.  I don’t think anything will change in the way this disaster is being handled until much later.  Until we’ve been made physically and emotionally sick by the condition of the Gulf of Mexico.  Then maybe things will change. If it’s not too late.

simulposted at The Dream Antilles and dailyKos


Skip to comment form

  1. Thanks for reading.

  2. I don’t need no stinking commission to know what happened.


    • Edger on May 25, 2010 at 23:43

    in a criminal negligence / homicide trial for Tony Hayward and the upper management of BP/Transocean/Halliburton.

    We already know what happened. A commission will be a whitewash, like just about all government commissions.

  3. I’m not dissing on McKibben, just showing how effective the selling of Obama was. March 2008 seems like light years ago politically.

    • Pen on May 26, 2010 at 08:08

    We better start planning on a primary candidate to knock him off before he loses the White House to some pxycho Repug

    • banger on May 26, 2010 at 14:09

    That this “administration” does not actually exist. Whatever Obama is he does not seem to be anything more than the head staff assistant to the oligarchy as represented by major corporations in the FIRE sector, energy, pharma, industrial food, MIC and so on down the line. They dictate, he types. Or so it appears in broad strokes.

    If there’s any evidence to the contrary I’d like to see it. This foot to the throat nonsense is a bout as lame a statement as I’ve ever read. How the fuck does some lightweight making in the thousands intimidate someone making in the billions? Let’s wake up here and realize that the government as it is currently set up is designed to fail at every turn. War continues because the MIC wants it to continue not because there is any real reason to do with national security.

    We have two choices: 1) either try to convince people that the only way a complex society can function is through regulating the public sphere which demands social democracy, i.e., making things like energy, health care and other essential utilities actually utilities; or 2) fucking join the tea-party people and dismantle the whole thing. Sometimes I lean one way, sometimes the other–but the current set-up seems to be a recipe for ultimate chaos. Maybe I’ll diary on that and make a poll.  

  4. So I have heard.

    At this point it would seem that the lesser of two evils is going to be a small nuke. Can the genetic damage be any worse with a small amount of radioactivity released at depth, compared with the genetically toxic dispersants being used, and with the genetic damage done by the crude oil itself? What about the Russian actions, have there been follow up studies to see the environmental damage over time? I seem to remember that follow up studies at the atolls in the South Pacific which were used as test sites showed a remarkable resiliency and return to somewhat normal environmental conditions, although those were detonations done at altitude, not underwater.

    I cringe to think about what I am proposing, but if the well casing has blown out, as has been surmised to have happened, there is probably zero chance a top hat, sippy straw, big diaper, or any other monopoly-marker-piece-technique is going to work. If the pool of oil/gas is as large as reported, and if it continues to gush out of multiple vent holes, and broken pipes, at the rate of 100,000 barrels a day, is there really any alternative to a nuke?

    May Gaia forgive me for my thoughts here.

  5. What is it now, some 36 days of oil spewing?

    Does BP really, really want to “plug” up the well?*

    Why has all deference been given to BP and their so-called expertise to stop this “gusher?”  If they had such super techology, or any back up plan, which we know now that they did not, they would have already succeeded somewhere within over a month’s time to stop this gushing of oil.

    Experts from 12 different foreign countries offered their help to stop this gusher.  

    Sweden offers to help the US to clean up oil spill.

    WASHINGTON (AFP), May 6, 2010 -Sweden is among those countries that have offered international assistance to the United States for the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. . . . .

    “These offers include experts in various aspects of oil spill impacts, research and technical expertise, booms, chemical oil dispersants, oil pumps, skimmers, and wildlife treatment,” the State Department said in a statement. . . . .

    “The US Coast Guard, the lead US agency in this response, continues to monitor developments and evaluate specific needs, and is currently reviewing offers of assistance,” it [The State Department] said.


    Cousteau Jean-Michel Cousteau dispatches team to Gulf oil spill

    Today I am dispatching team members Matt Ferraro, Brian Hall, and Nathan Dembeck to join Gary Holland and myself at St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana, to find and explain the realities of this unprecedented oil spill.

    I urge everyone to please go to Cousteau’s, Ocean Futures Society and take action!

    (*BP, afterall, is recovering at least some of the oil via the pipe they’ve inserted into the well pipe, in their supposed effort to stop the gushing.)

    [Note:  For the sake of recall only, Bush made the U.S. Coast Guard part of Homeland Security at the same he gave more duties to the Coast Guard and cut their numbers and their pay.  I don’t know what the situation is now — I would doubt that has changed.]

  6. this, just out:

    Public opinion turning against Obama on oil spill

    The American public is losing its patience with President Obama over his handling of the Gulf Coast oil spill.

    In the five weeks since an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig sent hundreds of thousands of gallons of oil spilling into the Gulf of Mexico, Obama had largely escaped political fallout. But as BP attempts yet again to seal the leak, a new USA Today/Gallup Poll finds a majority of Americans unhappy with Obama’s handling of the spill. According to the poll, 53 percent rate Obama’s handling “poor” or “very poor”; 43 percent believe Obama is doing a good job. . . . .

    BP got the lowest marks: 73 percent of Americans gave the company’s handling of the spill a “poor” rating. Still, a whopping 68 percent say BP should remain in charge of the cleanup. [68 percent ???????? ]

    • TMC on May 27, 2010 at 05:14

    that American does anything half assed…wars, ecological disasters, economic melt downs, et cetra, et cetra, et cetra.

  7. http://www.informationliberati

Comments have been disabled.