General impression: (and I couldn’t stand watching it so I read it) Obama said he was “in charge” so many times, it’s pretty clear he’s not in charge. I suspect he went this route because he guestimated this latest top kill technique was going to work. Now what if it doesn’t. I wonder who will be “in charge” then. Hopefully we don’t have to find out.
Just how annoying is this?
We will demand that they pay every dime they owe for the damage they’ve done and the painful losses that they’ve caused. And we will continue to take full advantage of the unique technology and expertise they have to help stop this leak.
But make no mistake: BP is operating at our direction. Every key decision and action they take must be approved by us in advance.
BP is a business that could, if it so desired, disappear. If the power is in Obama’s hands its because BP allows it to be. At this point it still makes sense to them, but I see no reason to threaten and demand and yet “take full advantage of”, no matter how big they screwed up.
I’ve designated Admiral Thad Allen, who has nearly four decades of experience responding to such disasters, as the national incident commander. And if he orders BP to do something to respond to this disaster, they are legally bound to do it.
So, for example, when they said they would drill one relief well to stem this leak, we demanded a backup and ordered them to drill two. And they are in the process of drilling two.
Personally I’m curious to know the safety precautions they have in place for the drilling of 2 more deep sea wells when Obama himself has just cancelled all drilling of wells due to lack of safety precautions.
And in the meantime, I should also say that Americans can help by continuing to visit the communities and beaches of the Gulf Coast.
How is this not the equivalent of “Americans should just go shopping”?? What the hell?
Let me make one final point. More than anything else, this economic and environmental tragedy, and it’s a tragedy, underscores the urgent need for this nation to develop clean, renewable sources of energy.
This is his most empathetic, caring statement in the whole speech and yet…..and yet….11 mens lives were lost and they are not mentioned.
So when it comes to the moment this crisis occurred moving forward, this entire White House and this entire federal government has been singularly focused on how do we stop the leak and how do we prevent and mitigate the damage to our coastlines.
I’m just calling bullshit on that line.
Well, it turns out that the way the process works, first of all there is a thorough environmental review as to whether a certain portion of the Gulf should be leased or not. That’s a thoroughgoing environmental evaluation. Then the overall lease is broken up into segments for individual leases, and again there’s an environmental review that’s done.
But when it comes to a specific company with its exploration plan in that one particular area — you know, they’re going to drill right here in this spot — Congress mandated that only 30 days could be allocated before a yes-or-no answer was given. That was by law. So MS — MMS’s hands were tied.
And as a consequence, what became the habit predating my administration was, you just automatically gave the environmental waiver because you couldn’t complete an environmental study in 30 days.
Yes friends, our most environmentally correct administration in history….when it came time for environmental assessments decided that the Yes answer really should be the default vs the No answer since they are only given 30 days. HUH?
Here’s an article about how BP has done a far better job of handling this disaster than others (Exxon-Valdez).
Do read Krauthammer too who notes that because the environmental movement has moved oil drills out of site, off of land, and far from the coast, we’re in the pickle we’re in.
Moreover, Obama has never been overly modest about his own powers. Two years ago next week, he declared that history will mark his ascent to the presidency as the moment when “our planet began to heal” and “the rise of the oceans began to slow.”
Well, when you anoint yourself King Canute, you mustn’t be surprised when your subjects expect you to command the tides.