I've been hearing aÂ lot of criticism directed toward the White House of late,Â inÂ reference toÂ the response (or lack of enough) directed toward stopping the leak. James Carville recently blasted the Obama Administration for being naive in thinking that they are working in conjunction and cooperation with BP, and on that point, I do agree with him. As Rachel Maddow pointed out onÂ her excellent report last week, not much has changed technologically-wise inÂ off-shore drilling safety measures. Seems like things are in the words of David Byrne, same as it ever was...
It's becoming more and more apparent that BP and Transocean liedÂ to the government about safety contingency plans and advanced technology to prevent such a catastrophe that occurred in the same region in 1979 from ever happening again ad we have future disaster lying-in-wait in otherÂ off-shore rigs currently operating with the same problematic Halliburton/Transocean blowout preventers who are drilling at deeper depths than Deepwater Horizon.Â Â It appears that a government agency, the MineralsÂ Management Service (MMS)Â has been complicit in matters as well as having a conflict of interest, as this is the government agency not only in charge of regulating off-shore drilling, but also awards tracts off the American coast for drilling and receives quite a substantial amount of royalties from the oil and gas that is generated from such. Combine the seductive lure of money and man's tendency to lose him morals and ethics when confronted with such along with a corporation who is a major player andÂ represents an industry that was allowed to basically write their own regulation by a previous administration that had a previous connection and history in the oil industry, I fail to see how the present administration can be held responsible in conjunction with this disaster.
Now, is it problematic that the MMS was allowed to have such control that presented such aÂ contradiction (or golden opportunity, depending on where you stood) in interests? I'd say yes, but I'd also say that without the Gulf disaster from happening, none of us, including the government outside of the MMS and the oil industry, would have ever known or had cause to question. I do think that with events such as the financial crisis and now this, we should take a look at every single agency to see where such problems such as this exists, which leads us to removing the corporate and special influences exerted through such in government agencies as well as our elected officials who make such things possible. We need to be careful when looking to assign blame in the face of such outragesÂ to make sure we don't get confused as to who the real bogeymen in the room are. Right now, it's looking like BP, MMS, Transocean and Halliburton to me, not President Obama or his administration.
The Atlanta Coffee Party group as well as the Florida groups and others are actively working on a resolution to address the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster and the issues resulting from this. Simply being outraged isnâ€™t enough and although we canâ€™t stop the leak, we can make sure this doesnâ€™t happen again and that the responsible parties are held accountable. If youâ€™d like to know more or be a part of this, contact Stacey Hopkins at firstname.lastname@example.org.