Wednesday, June 02, 2010

...and every morning he hitches the horses to the chariot of the sun.

CNN's poll question this AM bugged me:

The only options for "How is the White House handling the oil spill?" are Poor, Fair, and Good. There's no "Why is it the White House's business, again?"

Contrary to Chris Matthews' opinion, we did not elect a national Priest-King, but rather a sort of CEO. Looking at the user's manual for "USA v. 1.1", the only responsibility I see for Barry here is in having his justice department prosecute the offending party if they don't clean up their mess.

Really, it's okay for a sparrow to fall, or even get a little oily, without the Sun King in DC being forced to tend to it.


Ritchie said...

The question slips the premise past while most are mulling the choices.

TJP said...

Yeah, but DC isn't the real world. When you're the top man in a corrupt patronage scheme, you want the public to concentrate more on the symptoms than the fact that you and your cronies were abusing (already) unconstitutional powers to give special treatment to certain parties, while closing out competitors and claiming publicly that, "Why, it's fer th' Envirnmint!"

So hey, we drilled here and we drilled now....when do we start paying less?

GreatBlueWhale said...

I think in Mr. Matthews' case it would be more like God-King,ala Posleen. And of course Mr. Matthews would be a "normal".

Bram said...

We can debate whether or not the feds should be part of the clean-up. Since we are not currently engaged in a naval war, I see no reason why the Coast Guard and Navy should not be part of the solution.

What the administration has been doing, however, is actively interfering with the people actually trying to prevent a disaster. If they are not going to do anything, that is fine. Just stay out of the way.

Tam said...


Only if BP picks up the tab for the naval vessels.

It is neither my responsibility nor yours to pay for their oopsie.

Wolfwood said...

I'm not so sure I see the same problem you do, Tam. "Response" is a fairly neutral term. It could mean trying to plug the hole, it could mean disbursing funds and cutting red tape to help people and businesses on the Gulf Coast, it could mean personally going down to the area to symbolically stand with those at risk, etc. George W. Bush's response to the Ft. Hood shootings was generous and kind, and he wasn't even President any more.

So, I don't think it's an unfair question. I'd put poor, but not because I think the White House is the one responsible for plugging the hole.

Anonymous said...

Yet, if he were to do nothing at all, everyone would jump all over him for that. What if the gov had done nothing after Katrina?

We're talking major economic and environmental disaster here, not just a few oily birds.

The hypocrisy here is unreal.

Anonymous said...

"What if the gov had done nothing after Katrina?"

I would jump for joy as the Constitution would be followed!

Hurricanes happened before the Nanny State. The feds did not come running to kiss skinned knees in all previous hurricanes.

Wait, I thought the Left said that the feds did do nothing after Katrina? In my dreams perhaps.

Shootin' Buddy

Joel said...

This is why I can't take polls seriously, and why after polls somehow became "news" I found another reason not to take the news seriously.

But I do think if Barry O. would just take the time to stroll out on the water and touch the leak with his noodly appendage, he could turn it into wine and we could celebrate with a drunken party.

Bram said...

Tam - I guess we could charge them for fuel for the non-nuclear vessels (or maybe just have BP fill 'em up for free). Our Coasties and Sailors will be getting paid whether they are cleaning up oil or sunbathing in Cape May.

My beef is the feds preventing Louisiana from acting like a State and taking action.

Tam said...


"Yet, if he were to do nothing at all, everyone would jump all over him for that. What if the gov had done nothing after Katrina?"

New here?

First, your statement that "everyone would..." is bogus on the face of it, because I'm part of "everyone" and I sure wouldn't.

Second, I didn't argue for much of a federal response to Katrina, either.

Tony Muhlenkamp said...

I've been dismayed at the number of "limited government" talking heads that are using the leaking oil well to castigate President Obama for not doing more. Political opportunism is apparently alive and well on both sides of the aisle.

Britt said...

I think it's holding Obama to the impossible standard they held W to.

If POTUS is responsible for hurricanes, then he's responsible for oil wells. I'm not going to handicap myself by letting them hold their guy to a reasonable standard while the guy they hate is responsible for everything.

Besides, if they end up having to nuke the well, the .gov will have to do it. No one else has nukes.

TJP said...

Don't look at me, I think Obama said the right thing when he claimed responsibility, but I don't think his personal assistance is needed.

Look, two things:

* Congress works to accrue more power for the federal government every time it meets. When something goes wrong down the pipeline, no one should be surprised that the people look for some semblance of responsibility from any party with a mitten on the valves.

* I'm fairly certain that no one involved in the race to the bottom had a set of tried-and-true contingencies for this situation. I highly doubt that anybody at BP or the fedgov currently has the required competence. It's a learning experience.

I reserve the right to ridicule the corrupt government patronage schemes that these events have brought to light, even though I think that has very little to do with what happened.

I also reserve the right to ridicule BP. I do feel sorry for them, but I feel that I am given license to ridicule them because they actually devoted time to making up asinine names like "Top-Kill", "Junk-Shot", or "Operation Deep-Sea Cockpunch", when, "We're going to drop stuff on the well to see if we can plug it," works just fine.

TJP said...

Britt said...
"Besides, if they end up having to nuke the well, the .gov will have to do it. No one else has nukes."

You forgot the ".ru" after ".gov".

Tam said...


"I'm not going to handicap myself by letting them hold their guy to a reasonable standard while the guy they hate is responsible for everything."

That's fine, except:

A) "The guy they hate" isn't my guy, and

B) Just because they're dancing around the logic-is-dead bonfire doesn't obligate me to join them. Somebody needs to be reading the rule book around here.

Matt said...

There are only 2 things BHO could do that would make any difference. And of course he does neither.

1. Provide manpower from the military to assist with the clean up. (charged to BP of course)

2. Overrule the Army Corps (or corpse as he likes to pronounce it) and let La. get on with building those 100 miles of sand berms.

Instead he goes down there and puts on a rather pathetic PR game.

The really sad thing is that in addition to BP's negligence (if that's what it proves to be) the government has its share of the blame for not allowing companies to drill on the continental shelf where a leak like this could have been taken care of in a few days. Of course we'll never hear that from the MSM.

I was honestly pretty damned surprised that the Corps approved the measly 2 miles of berms as fast as they did. I've dealt with them on a lot of projects and speed is NOT in their vocabulary. They really can't think beyond the regulations to realize that any damage from the berms is going to be fairly temporary, but once oil gets into those marshes you can pretty much write them off. But then again, these are the guys that said the levees would hold after Katrina.

Anonymous said...

Oops...I posted the wrong link

DirtCrashr said...

From what I understand Teh Feds control and lease those waters - there’s no other "owner" around to force a cleanup other than BP's own self-interest. But apart from providing a 24/7 Media Circus, I'm more concerned with the tragic loss of life and material than a cleanup.

Anonymous said...

Tragic? Fairly strong assumption of the risk argument there.

As far as LA, MS and AL whining and bitching about the oil washing up on their shores, that's on them as well. If you never next to that toilet then long ago you should have built defences to the pollution. What is maddening is that the states just sat around and thought someone else would help (and this was the maddening part of Katrina, people sitting on the couch waiting for someone to rescue them).

Shootin' Buddy

Anonymous said...

Actually, there is a way to make sure that things get changed in the oil/gas/mining industries (anyone else notice a lot of industrial accidents going on lately that needs "the Federales have to do SOMETHING RIGHT NOW!"): Charge the Ceo/Coo/Board of Directors with negligient homicide, and don't forget all of the "Gooberment Inspectors" who signed off on the operations. That could be done on the STATE level. 11 dead oil workers, 44 days later, and NO arrests? If you keep speaking about "States Rights", then use your "States Authority" and put the fear of God back into the jerks in DC.