Thursday, June 10, 2010

Here We Go Again... Part 2...

I’ve got a sequel to my last post about the gulf oil spill. In the last post, I questioned Rep. Grayson’s “erudite and knowledgeable” response to suggestions that oil drilling on land or in shallow water would be much easier to remedy should a similar spill occur…specifically, “that’s stupid” and then hang up…and now, it appears that President Obama is also making the same “stupid” assertion (a sentiment that I do not share with Rep. Grayson). In his interview with Matt Lauer on June 7th, President Obama said the following:

“Shallow wells aren’t a problem because the risers essentially come up above the water, so if something like this happens in a shallow water well, then folks would just get up on the platform and they would start fixing it and it would be shut down fairly quickly.”

Here is the interview…Obama’s comment starts at the 8:22 mark in the video.

So, apparently, the president does not share Rep. Grayson’s opinion…of course, what intelligent, thinking, aware individual who has a handle on elementary school scientific and mathematical principles would agree with Rep. Grayson? Is he seriously so obtuse that he would suggest that an oil spill that happens a mile down—a depth that no human and no average submersible can endure—is no less difficult to fix than an oil spill that is easily reached by humans—either because it’s in shallow enough water or because it’s on dry land? I can’t imagine you could stump a third grader with that question! “Okay, Tommy, which is harder…to stop an oil spill in an area that no one can actually go or to stop an oil spill in an area that any person with some special equipment (or no special equipment at all) can go?” Hmmmm…that’s a tough one… I guess it’s time to chalk one up for the critical thinking curriculum in the Bronx school district and Harvard University (both of which Grayson attended). Do they still teach that the earth is flat in those places as well, Rep. Grayson?

But onto the other issue…governmental obstructionism in getting this oil spill handled in an efficient manner… It’s clear that the government is more concerned about having meetings and press conferences than they are in getting this issue resolved. Now, I would not go so far to say that they are intentionally delaying the cleanup for political purposes…yet…but if we see too much more incompetent dithering, I might be able to be convinced. Here’s just one point that has stuck out like a sore thumb in this entire process. Some of which is mentioned in an editorial found in the Washington Examiner (here is the link: ).

On April 29th, Gov. Jindal of Louisiana made a request to be allowed—by the federal government—to build dunes that would protect Louisiana’s shoreline and the coastal wetlands from the oil spill. As of the end of May, he had received permission to build some of those dunes—but only 2% of the requested dunes. 2%? You’re kidding, right? As of the past few days, he has been given permission to build up to 40% of the requested dunes. So I have two questions here—1) what the heck took the federal government so long to give Gov. Jindal any sort of permission to preserve his state’s coastline? and 2) why did they only approve 40%? It doesn’t seem like they’re too serious about getting this environmental disaster taken care of—a disaster that they’re consistently touting as the worst environmental disaster in US history…and yet it takes over a month to get approval to do half the job…seriously?!?

President Obama, you talk a good game on the gulf oil spill, but your actions…not so much. As we used to say in collections: “SHOW ME, DON’T TELL ME!” Rep. Grayson, please take the time to reread some of the science and mathematics texts that you obviously missed in elementary school. Finally, let’s get serious about getting this oil spill cleaned up rather than political posturing, arrogant rhetoric, and egotistical finger pointing. Like Truman said, “It is amazing how much you can accomplish when it doesn't matter who gets the credit.”

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