Sunday, May 16, 2010

I Want to Believe Them.

But I absolutely don't. The latest fairy tale, excuse me, official claim, made by mega oil industry miscreant BP seems like just so much petroleum patch propaganda. Pardon me for allowing this story to monopolize the blog of late, but unfortunately, I am finding it substantially more compelling than any other burning (pun intended) issue.

At this point, I am seriously beginning to wonder if President Obama, despite tough talk, not imposing governmental control over this growing catastrophe will wind up bringing down his administration. After all, how much longer does this have to go on before one can plausibly declare it a threat to national security? I seem to recall that after Hurricane Katrina the infamous Blackwater soldier of fortune agency was brought in to brutally quell any real or potential mayhem in New Orleans. This time around we have literal black water. The Universe works in mysterious and yet implacably poetic ways, doesn't it?

But back to the far fetched notion that this ongoing event might cascade into a political disaster for the Obama Administration. It certainly wouldn't be what anyone could plausibly forecast as a proximate cause for Obama's political collapse, so, by virtue of some off beat contrary logic, I'll immediately place the odds on this potentially burgeoning- let's call it The (underwater) Teapot Domebama- debacle, at 10 to 1 that it topples, by hook or by crook, (pun sort of intended) the sitting President. It it does, it wouldn't, by any means, make this horrific event worthwhile, but it would fulfill the dictum that every black cloud has a silver lining.


kolchack said...

Much as I would love to see Obama's corporate sellout rear end go down, I just don't see it. The wingnuts will hate him, no matter what. The kool-aid drinkers (and I know a number of them) will love him, no matter what. And most of the rest are too distracted to know why they should be angry at him, or to care.

Edwardo said...

I agree, Kolchack, ergo the long, if not insurmountable, odds.

Debra said...

Edwardo, under this logic, Obama should get "taken down" because he can't stop speeding bullets ??
Earthquakes ?
Who's gonna stop the oil leaking out ?
Do WE know how to do it ?
We don't, do we ?
Maybe he IS doing the best he can, in the situation.
Is THAT possible too ?
After all... it would be consummately irrational to tax him with being... the incarnation of Lucifer, wouldn't it, now ?

Edwardo said...

Deb, I am merely speculating based on several imagined premises. First,that the well disaster is vastly greater than is being admitted to by BP officiadom,two, that the BO Administration knows, in which case their hands off approach is indefensible. Perhaps this disaster isn't as horrific as it is shaping up to be, or perhaps it is and Barack and the gang are simply out to lunch all by themsel ves or, as it were, they are eating on BP's tab.

As for the POTUS stopping a speeding bullet, well that's what the Secret Service are for.

Thai said...

Interesting issue, do you mind exploring it a little more.

If I read you correctly, the implicit assumption is Federal control is absolute anyway so taking more control would lead to resolution of this issue... faster? more effectively?

... Can you hum a few bars? I just trying to follow your thinking and not at all disagreeing with you.

When it comes to oil spills, I really do not know what the right thing to do is.

I know I want the spill to stop and am interested in results

Edwardo said...

Thai, perhaps you could elaborate on this idea of implicit control by the government. That may be correct, but it seems to me that BP is exhibiting "tactical" control. They have refused, for example, to allow various kinds of monitoring to occur, and as near as I can tell, the "government" has not stepped into the breach to allow "experts" to become more involved.

There are several enormous problems here, one, if the government assumes formal executive control over this matter, they own it. For obvious reasons they can be expected to be reluctant to own even one drop of this one.

It reminds me somewhat of Obama assuming office in the midst of Bush's economic catastrophe. For a time Obama could offer up the "Bush excuse" that it was their problem that he inherited. That only works for a short while, and then it's your problem, lock, stock and barrel. People don't elect Presidents, rightly or wrongly, so they can pass the buck.

So, here we are again. It is BP's problem, or so the MSM would have it, but after a while, to emply your argot, humming those bars of, "it's their problem", simply won't fly. Having said that, Obama is, at heart, a can kicker, a bower and scraper to the status quo. His default position is to always avoid anything that might be at all risky. Unfortunately, for him, right now, the assiduous avoidance of risk can often be the riskiest choice one makes.

Having said all that, I have anything but great confidence in the government's ability to address this situation as judiciously or effectively as they ought to, but I have even less in BP who have proven to be, even by the oil industry's standards, to be something of a malefactor.

The consequences to BP for BP's utters failure brings about, in a worst case scenario, the dissolution of BP. The consequences for government's failure here are much more difficult to calculate.

Edwardo said...

Pardon the less than well edited version of my last response.

Debra said...

Look at what the government did in the last catastrophe, i.e. Katrina..
Not exactly... inspiring, was it ?
But then... there is an old saying that goes something along the lines of.. gotta be careful what you wish for, it MIGHT come true...
Is that what your post is about, Edwardo ?
The government ALREADY failed in Katrina.
Everybody knows it.
Louisiana looks even more like a third world country than other parts of the U.S. (and other parts of the South, STILL paying the piper for the Civil War...)
People aren't paying any attention any more, but THAT isn't changing anything either.
I think that people are even more unsettled by the idea that the government CAN'T take care of this problem. And BP ? Can IT take care of this problem ?
WHO can take care of this problem ?
We can have fun, and waste time pointing fingers, and raising lawsuits to move the monopoly money around with the responsibility, if we want to.
But... I'm not sure that we have as much faith in doing things that way as we used to...
For info, I thought you might like to hear what a journalist said this morning in response to a politico...
Politico : "I have... "faith" in the Euro."
Journalist : "Is that statement a philosophical one, or a political/economic one ?"
Politico :" It is a political/economic one".
Interesting, huh ?

Edwardo said...

Deb, as I hope my last post made clear, my invocation that the government assume control of this mess comes with a considerable amount of trepidation.

Debra said...

I think we share certain... preoccupations about the extent of "our" government's great concern about our collective and individual well being, Edwardo, and where that concern leads us.

Thai said...

Sorry Edwardo, I misunderstood you.

I read you were asking the government to take control from BP.

I really don't care who takes control, I want the plug filled but I would seriously hope that if the government is contemplating taking control, they ask themselves very seriously whether they think they can do a better job- and by saying this I in no way mean to imply that BP is doing or would do a better job than the government as I really don't know the answer.

This is simply a serious enough issue that I hope all parties involved are willing to drop politics and face savings theater and fall in line under the person/entity they truly think will do the best job to stop this leak. It is too serious to play games otherwise.

There will be plenty of opportunity to crucify BP later.

I simply mis-read that you were taking the typical emotional reaction I get from people that we need to take control in order to fix this (which I'm never so sure of) and so was responding.

As for BP sending the observers away, I can't comment. I read about this and read their reasons why and again I can't comment as I am not there.

I will say the issue reminds me of the whole push to let families watch while cardiac resuscitation in the emergency department is being performed on their loved ones. This is a zero-sum issue if ever there was one as I see the potential upside but I have close second hand experience with the downside.

Edwardo said...

No worries, Thai. I wasn't as clear as I could have been. With respect to BP, well, it's hard to see how they survive this one-not that their survival is on the top ten things I'm most concerned about with respect to this mess. There may limits to their corporate liability in some contexts, but the civil suits are likely to be absolutely crushing.

Thai said...

I don't think BP will survive either which will only go to prove that the lawyers are guaranteed to win from this whole mess.

Sometimes I think we honestly deserve the world we make for ourselves.