Tag: blowout

Obama’s declaration of incompetence

Obama’s content-free address from the Oval Office will go down in history as an official declaration of incompetence of the US Government. Conspicuous by its absence was the lack of any emergency plan to stop the oil leak by mobilizing the technical resources of the world’s most powerful government. Specifically, there was no mandate to create a task force to deploy unconventional measures to seal the well. Here is Obama’s decision on how to apply the best minds in the Federal Government to the worst environmental disaster in American history:

Because there has never been a leak this size at this depth, stopping it has tested the limits of human technology.  That’s why just after the rig sank, I assembled a team of our nation’s best scientists and engineers to tackle this challenge — a team led by Dr. Steven Chu, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist and our nation’s Secretary of Energy.  Scientists at our national labs and experts from academia and other oil companies have also provided ideas and advice.

As a result of these efforts, we’ve directed BP to mobilize additional equipment and technology.

Translation: Our government is not competent to fix this problem, so we must rely on BP. This, more than any other sign, is conclusive proof of the poisonous fruit of the “Reagan revolution” – a government that declares itself incompetent to protect its people from the most severe crisis.

There has been much talk about the use of a small nuclear device to seal the oil leak, but the US government’s agencies also have extensive experience with the deployment of conventional high explosives underground. In the face of American airpower supremacy, our potential adversaries have been busily digging and tunneling for decades to establish hardened structures protecting their command posts and strategic weapons development sites. America’s response has been to develop steadily more powerful “bunker buster” weapons to destroy deeply-buried structures.

The development of powerful bunker-buster weapons requires advanced research into explosive effects on geological strata. In short, America’s weapons researchers know a great deal about what happens to underground structures when a large conventional bomb is detonated near them. This knowledge is directly applicable to the problem of sealing a runaway oil well. When a new bunker buster was needed to destroy Saddam Hussein’s most deeply buried bunkers, the US Defense Department developed the weapon in just a few months. No such urgency is felt for sealing the runaway well. But even if such a solution could not be devised before the completion of the relief well fix, it would surely be of immense value to stopping future catastrophic spills.

But Obama said exactly nothing about letting our government take the lead in protecting our people. You see, Obama is a great admirer of Reagan, and Reagan said “Government is the problem.” Having declared our government incompetent, America must now rely on predatory corporations to protect public safety. The result will be more and greater environmental catastrophes, as organizations with no incentive to protect the environment continue to pretend to bear this responsibility while maximizing the profits of stockholders and dumping their risks on the helpless people of the world.

Ronald Reagan destroyed the ability of the United States government to protect its own people, clearing the path for rule by corporate oligarchs. Barak Obama is ensuring that that our governmental incompetence remains intact and the power of the oligarchs remains unchecked.