"The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge."

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Drowning In Oil, Dithering Incompetence and Red Tape

53 Days into the oil spill in the gulf and still not one sign of leadership from team Obama.

Was the Obama administration foolish enough to think that this was an appropriate crisis to use in forcing their vapid energy and green agenda on the United States?

Does Janet Napalitano or Eric Holder have a degree in any discipline in oil exploration, or oil platform management?

What about the vaunted Ken Salazar, Secretary of Interior or 'white roof, white car' Stephen Chu of Secretary of Energy, or Carole Browner at EPA ? This nest of weasels are behind much of the delay pushing their agenda ahead of responsible leadership.

This Administration has proven their complete and total incompetence. From the moment this rig caught on fire this Administration should have been in ready mode. Instead, proper protection for an accident of this nature was not on hand, as it was supposed to be.

It was days before Janet Napolitano stepped forward and more than a week before Obama showed up to take a look.

Now we find out that this administration was offered and refused help, either because of the Jones Act or environmental considerations that only 98 % and not 100% of the oil would be cleaned in the oil filled waters. Many countries, NATO allies, volunteered and thier help would have in the beginning days minimized most certainly the most awful spill in United States history.

The Whitehouse has had, party after party, rock stars, visiting sports teams, and all Obama can do is blame others? He has sent Holder to file suit, has fired the head of the Mineral Management Services the agency that overseas oil platforms who was also awash in bribery and yet more porn viewers. His administration doctored a document produced by oil experts to fit their agenda, even some of the research produced by his administration has walruses and otters in the Carribean.

The experts, recommended by the National Academy of Engineering, say Interior Secretary Ken Salazar modified their report last month, after they signed it, to include two paragraphs calling for the moratorium on existing drilling and new permits.

Here, http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2010/06/026520.php states, "The administration has decreed a six-month moratorium on exploratory drilling in the Gulf, based on a report that Interior Secretary Ken Salazar wrote for President Obama. Salazar claimed that a panel of seven experts selected by the National Academy of Engineering had peer reviewed his report. It turns out, though, that the seven experts never saw the recommendation for a moratorium, and in fact oppose it:

The seven experts who advised President Obama on how to deal with offshore drilling safety after the Deepwater Horizon explosion are accusing his administration of misrepresenting their views to make it appear that they supported a six-month drilling moratorium -- something they actually oppose. And further states, ..."So this looks like one more instance where the Obama administration is neither honest nor competent, and where its first instinct seems to be to pursue the course that will most damage our economy."

Obama's big solution is to not only cripple this nation with a unwise six month moratorium of offshore drilling not just on the gulf coast, but everywhere. I guess that fits right in his plan of astronomical gasoline prices. What will happen to the prices of all the other products that are made of petroleum derivatives? And the jobs tied to those products?

The Obama administration's inept handling of this will affect the entire gulf shoreline and negatively impact tourism, has hurt fisheries, and for what reason? To forward their insane energy agenda?

It is stunning in a situation where all hands and necessary resources should have been out there poste haste and every solution tried, we the American public and especially those on the Gulf coast were handed dithering and walls of red tape. Clearly this disaster starts with the government and environmental nut cases that created government regulations that made drilling in safer depths impossible. Due to these regulations the Deep Horizon rig was placed 50 miles off shore with the well head 5,000 feet below water gushing thousands and thousands of barrels of oil after the platform collapsed and fell into the ocean.

This map shows how many rigs there are in the gulf,

In recent days, the You tube video from an entrepreneur using hay to soak up the oil which went viral was on Hannity, along with others who have used finely shredded dried Aspen wood, two other oil soaking applications with cloth, and many more ingenious ideas, and this administration and BP have not given any of these remarkable solutions even a second of thought.

I guess it is better to idly hold numerous conferences and blame and threaten derriere kicking allowing the waste to wetlands of the Louisiana coast, and place thousands on the unemployment rolls and wreck the fisheries, and oyster beds, than to try something with out years of study from the environmental whackjobs at the EPA. Their negligence to not only our fragile economy, also now threatens every bit of coastline from East Texas to the West coast of Florida, and maybe the east coast while they dither.

If this had happened under Bush, or any Republican Administration Congress would be raising holy hell, but this nation wrecking bunch are forging forward allowing EPA to ever tighten policies tied to Cap and Trade Legislation and are full steam ahead to shove this vile nation breaking agenda through Congress.

And these same nitwits cannot understand why average Americans are upset. Even Our Gang, or the Little Rascals or The Three Stooges could have been more effective than this bunch that seems preoccupied with fixing elections, man moob wet t-shirt water gun games, schmoozing picnics and not interested in this nations general welfare, or being capable of doing anything that remotely resembles leadership.







"Within days of the oil spill, several European nations and thirteen countries in total apparently offered the Obama administration ships to assist in the clean-up of the Gulf. When asked about this, a State Department press spokesman refused to identify any offers of assistance.

According to one newspaper, European firms could complete the task in four months, rather than an estimated nine months if done only by the U.S. Working with the U.S., the cleanup could be accomplished in three months. The Belgian firm DEME contends it can clean up the oil with accuracy at a depth of 2,000 meters. Another European firm with capabilities is the Belgian firm Jan De Nul Group. There are also Dutch companies with similar special equipment capable of accelerating cleaning-up the Gulf. The Belgians and the Dutch are also long time NATO allies and as such partners in international security cooperation.

According to the article, no U.S. companies have the ships which can accomplish this task is because those ships would cost twice as much to build in the U.S. as they do outside the country. This is one adverse impact of the Jones Act, which Congress passed in 1920s. This piece of protectionism has only hampered an anemic American maritime industry. It also has prevented a quicker response to the oil spill. European firms do have the expertise to clean up the spill.
If other nations have the technologies to address this oil spill, then the administration does have the ability to accept their help: in response to Hurricane Katrina, for example, Department of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff temporarily waived the Jones Act in order to facilitate much-needed transport of oil throughout the country.

The Jones Act, which is supposedly about protecting jobs, is actually killing jobs. The jobs of fishermen, people working in tourism and others who live along the Gulf Coast and earn a living there are being severely impacted. There are also additional private sector jobs which are NOT being created in the United States since the Jones Act effectively prices U.S. based companies out of the ability to be competitive on the competitive global market.

As we strive to develop new technologies for a cleaner environment at sea, the Jones Act continues to hobble our own capabilities, sometimes with devastating results.

The Jones Act needs to be waived now in light of this catastrophe and permit those whom we have helped and cooperated with in the past to assist us in our need. After waiving the Jones Act for the Gulf clean up effort, Congress and the administration should repealing it all together."


"Five weeks ago Escambia County officials requested permission from the Mobile Unified Command Center to use a sand skimmer, a device pulled behind a tractor that removes oil and tar from the top three feet of sand, to help clean up Pensacola’s beaches. County officials still haven’t heard anything back. Santa Rosa Island Authority Buck Lee told The Daily Caller why: “Escambia County sends a request to the Mobile, Ala., Unified Command Center. Then, it’s reviewed by BP, the federal government, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Coast Guard. If they don’t like it, they don’t tell us anything.”

Keeping local governments in the dark is just one reason why the frustration of residents in the Gulf is so palpable. State and local governments know their geography, people, economic impacts and needs far better than the federal government does. Contrary to popular belief, the federal government has actually been playing a bigger and bigger role in running natural disaster responses. And as Heritage fellow Matt Mayer has documented, the results have gotten worse, not better.

And when the federal government isn’t sapping the initiative and expertise of local governments, it has been preventing foreign governments from helping. Just three days after the Deepwater Horizon explosion, the Dutch government offered to provide ships outfitted with oil-skimming booms and proposed a plan for building sand barriers to protect sensitive marshlands. LA Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) supported the idea, but the Obama administration refused the help. All told, thirteen countries have offered to help us clean up the Gulf, and the Obama administration has turned them all down.

According to one Dutch newspaper, European firms could complete the oil spill clean up by themselves in just four months, and three months if they work with the United States, which is much faster than the estimated nine months it would take the Obama administration to go it alone. The major stumbling block is a protectionist piece of legislation called the Jones Act which requires that all goods transported by water between U.S. ports be carried in U.S.-flag ships, constructed in the United States, owned by U.S. citizens, and crewed by U.S. citizens. But in an emergency this law can be temporarily waived as DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff did after Katrina. Each day our European allies are prevented from helping us speed up the clean up is another day that Gulf fishing and tourism jobs die.

And then there are the energy jobs that the Obama administration is killing with its over-expansive ban on offshore energy development. Experts–who were consulted by Interior Secretary Ken Salazar before he issued his May 27 report recommending a six-month moratorium on all ongoing drilling in waters deeper than 500 feet–now tell The New Orleans Times-Picayune that they only supported a six-month ban on new drilling in waters deeper than 1,000 feet. A letter from the experts protesting the use of their names to support a ban they actually oppose reads: “A blanket moratorium is not the answer. It will not measurably reduce risk further and it will have a lasting impact on the nation’s economy which may be greater than that of the oil spill. We do not believe punishing the innocent is the right thing to do.”

And just how many innocent jobs is Obama’s oil ban killing? An earlier Times-Picayune report estimated the moratorium could cost Louisiana $2.97 billion in revenue and 7,590 jobs directly related to the oil industry. President Obama still has the power to save many of the jobs. He could reverse his decision and lift the ban. But political considerations make that impossible. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, the President was the largest single recipient of campaign contributions from BP and its employees over the past twenty years. Therefore, the President has to put distance between himself and BP, which may be why President Obama has not spoken with BP CEO Tony Hayward one single time since the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded in April. The problem is, vilifying BP’s corporate leadership does nothing to stop the spill or quicken the cleanup.

After the Obama administration refused help from the Netherlands, Geert Visser, the consul general for the Netherlands in Houston, told Loren Steffy: “Let’s forget about politics; let’s get it done.” It’s sound advice, Mr. President. Let’s free local governments to clean up their shores, waive protectionist laws that keep out foreign help, and let the oil workers who can safely do so get back to work. Let’s get it done. "

1 comment:

  1. Incompetent or intentional, or a little bit of both?