Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Everyone Wants Someone To Do Something About the Oil Spill

The Obama administration is very, very unhappy with British Petroleum. But since the oil spill, Obama and his team have behaved as though there wasn't much they could do about the oil gushing into the Gulf, or BP's seemingly slow response to the crisis. Now commentators are turning their ire from the oil company to the administration, pushing Obama to take control of the cleanup away from BP and do whatever has to be done to stop the flow of oil into the ocean. They say Obama has offered too little, too late. "What took so long?" Peter Scheer asks at TruthDig. "It isn't enough to simply blame BP for not getting the job done. Go out and find someone who can. Lead. Give orders." At the New York Times, Andrew Revkin strikes the same tone: "President Obama not only has the authority, but the obligation—however politically risky that might be—to take ownership of efforts to stanch the flow," he writes. "To my mind, if the 'top kill' procedure being prepared for midweek fails, Obama must step forward far more forcefully and publicly engage an oil-well SWAT team drawing on the country's leading lights in hydraulics, deep-ocean engineering and geology, from the Pentagon outward." The nation's biggest fan of offshore drilling has weighed in too, with Sarah Palin wondering on Fox whether Obama's campaign contributions are the reason the president has been, "taking so doggone long to get in there, to dive in there, and grasp the complexity and the potential tragedy that we are seeing here in the Gulf of Mexico." But at 24/7 Wall St., Dougles McIntyre says the demands for action may be fruitless. "The leak may be beyond the ability of technology to cure," he says, "and only the eventual exhaustion of the pressure from under the ocean's floor will stop the spill from expanding."

Credits: Slate Magazine

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