Blame doesn’t fix problems (5/27/10)

I’ve said it before and I’ll repeat this:  I’m not one to delve into politics, but I find the BP oil spill situation fascinating, not because of the ecological damage that it possesses, but on how certain key information has gone by the wayside, no thanks to the finger-pointing and the outrage that has crossed the line.

It’s hypocritical for the federal government to place full blame on BP for not following procedures, when in fact, it’s the feds’ job to enforce the rules and ensure that everyone is following them.  For every Enron and Bernie Madoff, they are those who do follow the rules and never get the praise for doing it.  There are oil companies that are abiding by the rules, and yet they get lumped into a category when one company’s problems is highlighted.

What is interesting to is on how we forgot about how it happened.  We’re spending too much time on “what has happened” after the fact.  The oil rig suffered an explosion and the rig crashed into the water, killing 11 workers.  You don’t really plan for something of that magnitude to happen. Explosions, weather, unforeseen events happen everyday.

Watching the Sunday morning shows, the talking heads in Washington wants to place all of the blame on BP for the “ecological” damage they have caused by not plugging up the leak.

Apparently, the policy wonks and the talking heads in Congress has never worked on an oil rig.  It’s much tougher than we think it is to work and live out in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico, drilling oil so that we can drive our cars, push our lawn motors, and fire up our motorcycles.  And the President wants to uncap reservoirs out near Virginia.  Those plans have been scuttled for the time being.


While we’re at, it’s not the Republican Party’s fault for this oil spill, contrary to what some Twitter people want to waste 15 hours tweeting about.  This is not a partisan issue.

The government and their agencies have a duty to enforce, ensure, and in times, help companies resolve crisis such as this oil spill.  But, is it an oil spill, when the oil is coming from the bottom of the sea, and not from a tanker?

And please spare me that President Obama is being tough on them.  Talking “tough” doesn’t equate to getting on the phone and telling the EPA, Coast Guard, and others and telling them “British Petroleum is having trouble plugging the leak and it’s getting worse.  Head out there and give them help and assistance, along with ideas on how to stop this before it gets worse.

Handing out vague threats of “punishing” BP is useless and the polls are starting to reflect that. The majority of Americans don’t give a damn about who’s at fault right now and talking like John Wayne is hollow at best.

Ask Nashville.  They’re not finger-pointing, doing sound bites, or any of that mess. Their city needs to be cleaned up after a flood.  You don’t see no one from Washington down there.  The flood damage in that area has a greater impact on the people living there than an oil spill out at sea.  Nashvillians need water to drink, cook, and bathe.  And yet here we are captivated by an environmental problem that affects seagulls, and we don’t care about the lives that were lost in the explosion and the ones in the Nashville floods.

Isn’t that an ecological challenge too?

Do whatever is necessary to stop this damn leak, go over what went wrong, and come up with proposals that will prevent, or least minimize another fiasco.

That is what people should do, but we’re always looking for someone to blame.