The Oil Spill — Let’s Share The Blame

June 19th, 2010 by Lee Eldridge

Before we get into the blame game, let me make it clear that BP is the primary culprit in the current catastrophe. Nothing I’m about to write is intended to alleviate BP of any of their responsibility. But truthfully, there’s a LOT of blame to go around. Time magazine listed “The Dirty Dozen: Who to Blame for the Oil Spill”. They got much of it right. They threw a lot of people under the bus, including you and me. I’m good with that. But they missed two groups that share a significant portion of the blame. Below is their list, and their reasoning behind their inclusions to the list. (Click here for the full post from Time.) And then the two groups that SHOULD have been included on their list.

1. John Browne: Former CEO of BP because he’s accused of “cost-cutting” at BP prior to stepping down in 2007.
2. Tony Hayward: CEO of BP when the the oil leak occurred.
3. Chris Oynes: Interior Department official who oversaw the MMS until he retired at the end of May.
4. Doug Suttles: BP’s COO.
5. George Bush: too cozy with the oil industry.
6. Dick Cheney: too cozy with the oil industry.
7. The American Driver: 200 million people driving 250 million passenger vehicles.
8. Barack Obama: because he “proposed” opening new tracts for oil production prior to the crisis. (This is the one in particular that I disagree with their reasoning, and a clear indication of Time’s bias.)
9. Ken Salazar: Obama’s Interior Secretary who oversees the MMS.
10. S. Elizabeth Birnbaum: Obama’s pick to run the MMS until she was ousted on May 27th.
11. Steve Newman: CEO of Transocean, the company that owns the Deepwater Horizon rig.
12. Tim Probert: President of Halliburton, the contractor responsible for cementing the well.

Personally I find two huge omissions from this list. And the fact that a left-leaning publication like Time would miss on these does not surprise me.

CongressCongress and White House
We’ve already thrown millions of Americans under the bus, why not Congress and the White House too? And not just this Congress and the White House, but everyone who has served in Congress and the White House since 1982. Why 1982? Because “In 1982 Congress passed the ‘Federal Oil & Gas Royalty Management Act‘ which mandates protection of the environment and conservation of federal lands in the course of  building oil and gas facilities. The Secretary of the Interior designated the MMS as the administrative agency responsible for the mineral leasing of submerged OCS lands and for the supervision of offshore operations after lease issuance.” This is quoted directly from the MMS website.

What does this mean? That in 1982, Congress in their infinite wisdom, put one department in charge of collecting royalties AND providing oversight to the oil industry. They collect BILLIONS from the oil companies that go into the coffers of our government. Not to mention the corruption that has existed in this department for many years. How come our politicians never seem to understand that such an incestuous situation is a REALLY bad idea until it’s too late? Every member of Congress and every member of the White House that has allowed for this kind of situation to occur since 1982 bares some responsibility for the current catastrophe. And they run a VERY CLOSE SECOND to BP for allowing this crisis to occur.

Why did Time miss this? Because Congress in the ’80s was controlled by the left.

One of the few things President Obama has done right since this occurred was to split up the responsibilities of the MMS. Good job Mr. President.

Environmentalists
Yep. Throwing all of us environmentalists under the bus too. Why? Because oil companies DO NOT want to drill in the deep sea when safer locations could be made available to them. The President in his address to the nation the other night said that one of the reasons we need to move away from oil dependency is because we’re running out of places to drill, and that is why we’re drilling so far out into the ocean. This is misleading and disingenuous. We’ve told the oil companies that we need more oil, but have prohibited them from drilling in much safer locations such as ANWR and shallow waters where the chance of such a catastrophe would be incredibly minimized. The compromise that we’ve made is that we’ll allow oil companies to drill further out into the ocean so that we don’t have to see the oil rigs. But the deeper we drill, the greater the risk. And now this compromise has come back to bite us all in the ass. (Yes, ass is still my favorite cuss word.)

Why did Time miss blaming the environmentalists? Because many on the far left don’t want ANY domestic drilling. And Time’s reasoning for including Obama on this list (because he dared to possibly allow MORE drilling) clearly displays their bias against oil production and consumption.

Have we thrown everyone under the bus now? I hope so.

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4 Responses to “The Oil Spill — Let’s Share The Blame”

  1. Julie A Says:

    Yes absolutely. As a matter of fact, didn’t the gov’t give BP some sort of big safety award last year? The government is responsible for all these regulations, and for enforcing their regulations. Didn’t they inspect the rig and sign off on it?

    I would just love to see some of those shrimpers and fishermen who’s way of life is now destroyed be able to grill our beloved gov’t officials on Capitol Hill in the same way that this show trial has been going on against BP.

    As for environmentalism… I am as much for clean air and water as anyone else, but I truly believe that once Communism fell in the late ’80s,.. those communists had to find a new home… that home is radical environmentalism.

    And as for the question of why isn’t Obama lifting the Jones Law and letting foreign expertise into the Gulf to help stem this catastrophe?? The only answer I can see to this question is that this gushing oil is playing into his cap and trade agenda. Imagine all the video and pics we are going to be treated to of oil-soaked wildlife to really get us pissed off at the oil industry……

    And then there’s the question of the off shore oil drilling moratorium that was handed down last week…. yeah.. more Americans outta work…..for no good reason. By the way,. Brazil and many other countries are still being allowed to drill in the Gulf.

    Have a great day!

  2. Julie A Says:

    I forgot to mention this little tidbit:
    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0510/36783.html

    BP contributed an awful lot of money to Obama during the campaign.
    Looks a little like cronyism to me!

  3. Julie A Says:

    Looks like both BP and MMS were well aware of the high risk of a blowout clear back in February. BP informed MMS of the problem and looks like MMS did nothing to intervene.. If heads are rolling at BP,.. heads should be rolling at MMS too.

    http://preview.bloomberg.com/news/2010-06-17/bp-struggled-with-cracks-in-gulf-well-as-early-as-february-documents-show.html

  4. Michael Says:

    It seems like there is finally some good news with the spill. The Houston Chronicle reports, U.S. ships were being outfitted earlier this month with four pairs of skimming booms airlifted from the Netherlands and should be deployed within days.” I hope this is a sign of things to come. For all those feeling pretty gloomy about this situation, I recommend a good laugh… Here’s a funny joke, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3j7uSbccSc