BP surrenders to Obama, $20 Billion and no dividends, Conservatives cry Bully

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#1
So this story has been unfolding all day. Obama gains a victory for the Oil spill victims, and a number of conservatives show their true colours in immediately siding with the corporation and once again railing against anything Obama.

Even as the news was breaking that BP had not only agreed to President Obama's call for a $20 billion escrow fund to pay for damages related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, but had also decided not to pay any dividends to shareholders for the rest of the year, the third most popular story on the Wall Street Journal's website was an attack on the president's treatment of BP by columnist Holman Jenkins.

As might be expected from the source, the complaint is not that the president was too mealy-mouthed in his support of new energy legislation in his speech Tuesday night, nor is it that he doesn't have the cojones to put BP into receivership. No, according to Jenkins, by declaring a moratorium on offshore drilling and then asking BP to compensate unemployed oil workers Obama is like "a policeman [who] kicks out your taillight and then writes you a ticket for a faulty taillight."

(The White House fact sheet on the escrow fund indicates that BP agreed to pay $100 million directly to a fund for unemployed oil industry workers.)

Jenkins' analogy, while presumably popular with Wall Street Journal readers, is astonishing (a word he uses to describe the size of the escrow fund) in its willful inability to grasp what's actually going on. Before anyone had the chance to kick any tail-lights, BP drove the entire Gulf of Mexico into a ditch. We've all seen how the passage of time, a phalanx of lawyers, and friendly courts (all the way up to the Supremes) allowed Exxon to escape paying financial penalties commensurate to the damage that the Exxon Valdez spill caused. By getting BP to agree to the $20 billion escrow fund (which, the president has emphasized, is not a "cap), the White House has proactively set up a mechanism to ensure BP pays up, at exactly the moment when BP has no wriggle room to escape responsibility for what t has wrought.

Jenkins even has the chutzpah to blame Obama for BP's falling stock price! We're talking about a company that initially claimed that only 1,000 barrels a day was leaking from the well-head. The latest estimates, released yesterday, put the total potentially as high as 60,000. A company that is now muddling through its third major disaster in five years. A company whose CEO has routinely made comments so utterly insensitive to the scale of the disaster that it is a wonder he hasn't been sliced and diced by his own board of directors, well before the rude treatment he will undoubtedly receive from the House Energy Resources subcommittee on Thursday.

Getting BP to withhold its dividend and direct that cash to an escrow fund now is an example of good government. If a cop had actually been walking the regulatory beat during the previous presidential administration, one that Jenkins regularly defended, the Gulf -- and BP -- might be a lot better off today.

http://www.salon.com/technology/how_the_world_works/2010/06/16/bp_buckles_to_obama/index.html



Then that bastion of common sense and not at all a lunatic Dick Armey came out to call the move Unconstitutional

“By what constitutional authority does the president of the United States say, `I will decide what redress will be made to the victims of this catastrophe by this firm, and I will decide who are the victims and who are not the victims.’ The Constitution doesn’t give that authority to the executive branch…. There are courts for this purpose,” Armey said, speaking derisively of Obama’s “fulminations about what he will decide about whose butt to kick.”
...
“There are all kinds of room in the Constitution for these roles to be taken up,” he said. “But it would begin with this: any law that extends the power of the state should be first judged against the Constitution… If I go park my truck on your yard, you don’t call the mayor, you call your lawyer and say we’ll settle this in the courts.”

http://bluewavenews.com/2010/06/17/dick-armey-obama-forcing-bp-to-pay-damages-to-gulf-oil-victims-is-unconstitutional/



Then we have Joe Barton and co. coming out to apologise to BP for the, err, "shakedown".

"I'm ashamed of what happened in the White House yesterday," said Rep. Joe Barton (R-Tex.) during a hearing on Thursday morning with BP's CEO Tony Hayward." I think it is a tragedy in the first proportion that a private corporation can be subjected to what I would characterize as a shakedown -- in this case a $20 billion shakedown -- with the attorney general of the United States, who is legitimately conducting a criminal investigation and has every right to do so to protect the American people, participating in what amounts to a $20 billion slush fund that's unprecedented in our nation's history, which has no legal standing, which I think sets a terrible precedent for our nation's future."

"I'm only speaking for myself. I'm not speaking for anyone else, but I apologize," Barton added. "I do not want to live in a county where anytime a citizen or a corporation does something that is legitimately wrong, [it is] subject to some sort of political pressure that, again, in my words, amounts to a shakedown."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/06/17/gop-outraged-by-shakedown_n_615686.html


Of course the icing on the cake here is that Barton has taken massive campaign contributions from BP

Before his election to Congress, Barton was an executive with ARCO, which was later acquired by BP.

He has taken $1.4 million in campaign contributions from the industry since 1989, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Barton's backers have been political action committees and employees of Anadarko Petroleum, Exxon Mobil and Valero Energy, the watchdog group reported.

In earlier statements, Barton said he held BP accountable for the disaster but said the committee should also be looking into the Obama administration's response to the spill.

Barton has also opposed attempts to more tightly regulate the oil industry.


http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2010/06/17/2010-06-17_texas_rep_joe_barton_apologizes_to_bp_ceo_tony_hayward_over_white_houses_20_bill.html#ixzz0r8Y9vrp6


Lulz all round.
"Why should we subsidise intellectual curiosity?"
-Ronald Reagan

"Knowledge is in every country the surest basis of public happiness."
-George Washington
Last edited by Ur all $h1t at Jun 17, 2010,
#2
I'm watching the Deposition right now live on CNN. That CEO of BP is avoiding all the questions and they are getting really pissed with him.
#3
And so it begins.


I don't know what's beginning, it's just a badass thing to say.
"The future's uncertain, and The End is always near."
-Jim Morrison
#4
Wait, so BP are fine with it, and it's just rightists that are complaining?..

"The mind is its own place, and in itself

Can make a Heav'n of Hell, a Hell of Heav'n"

- John Milton, Paradise Lost
#6
Conservatives are always wrong herp derp lets complain about everything
Quote by Meths
I respect and value your opinion.

Just kidding. You're a fucking retard.



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You want to strap a bunch of used mattresses to the walls?

Why not just roll around naked in medical waste while you're at it?

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medical waste isn't free on craigslist
#7
I think Dick Armey has a point, but he doesn't realize that they could challenge Obama's decision in the courts if they really wanted to. Honestly, I think private citizens who don't receive redress from Obama's "shakedown" should sue BP with a class action suit anyway. 20 billions doesn't come close. And isn't a strong enough deterrent for other firms.
#9
are they still referring to the company as British Petroleum?

I saw the beginning of the deposition earlier and I heard it said a few times.
Rhythm in Jump. Dancing Close to You.

Quote by element4433
Yeah. people, like Lemoninfluence, are hypocrites and should have all their opinions invalidated from here on out.
#10
Aaaah yes, conservatives and their pimps, the oil companies.

Good on Obama for finally dealing a blow to those bastards.
#11
As much as I love watching biased, dick head reporters getting called out, the guy that wrote that first article seems like a **** nozzle from the other end of the scale.

Edit: I can say dick and not cock? That seems backwards.
Last edited by Amos_Moses at Jun 17, 2010,
#12
Does it need to be pointed out that the rig was run by an American company? Or that an American company built the blowout preventer that failed to prevent the blowout?
#13
Quote by MightyAl
Does it need to be pointed out that the rig was run by an American company? Or that an American company built the blowout preventer that failed to prevent the blowout?

Or that British people payed for it all, knowing the risks? Just own up and pay for the mistakes...
#14
Quote by MightyAl
Does it need to be pointed out that the rig was run by an American company? Or that an American company built the blowout preventer that failed to prevent the blowout?


"Blowout preventer"

The company didn't perform the necessary tests to ensure the safety of drilling prior to digging into our shores. Not only that, it was much deeper than has been attempted before. That's what matters.
"The future's uncertain, and The End is always near."
-Jim Morrison
#15
That's just stupid.


So they don't think the company responsible for the spill should be responsible for providing funds to help clean up the spill? It would be different if BP had a serious problem with it, but it sounds like they agreed to it.


Pathetic. They'll use anything they can against Obama, even when it makes little sense.
#16
Quote by SlinkyBlue
"Blowout preventer"

The company didn't perform the necessary tests to ensure the safety of drilling prior to digging into our shores. Not only that, it was much deeper than has been attempted before. That's what matters.

And the fact that your government let them do it doesn't?
#17
Quote by Lemoninfluence
are they still referring to the company as British Petroleum?
.


Hadn't noticed, they seem to be using BP in the questioning since I've been watching
#18
Quote by captaincrunk
Or that British people payed for it all, knowing the risks? Just own up and pay for the mistakes...

the 39% American owned British people.

So it seems that even if they aren't using British Petroleum, the nationality of the company is still an issue.
Rhythm in Jump. Dancing Close to You.

Quote by element4433
Yeah. people, like Lemoninfluence, are hypocrites and should have all their opinions invalidated from here on out.
#19
Quote by MightyAl
Does it need to be pointed out that the rig was run by an American company? Or that an American company built the blowout preventer that failed to prevent the blowout?


The first part is false. The rig was run by TransOcean, an international drilling company. And about the spill, the captain of the ship (in this case the rig) is held responsible under Maritime law. TransOcean was the company that wanted to drill there, and controls BP's rigs. Their technology wasn't meant for those depths and that pressure, so it failed.

If Obama wanted to do something useful, he would punish TransOcean for their failure. BP is just the figurehead that would profit from the oil somewhere down the line. Conservatives are right for protesting Obama's treatment of BP; the responsibility should fall on TransOcean instead.
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#20
Quote by MightyAl
And the fact that your government let them do it doesn't?


I'm confused, why does nationality matter? A company ****ed up and they should pay for it.
#21
Quote by Tempoe
I'm watching the Deposition right now live on CNN. That CEO of BP is avoiding all the questions and they are getting really pissed with him.

It was highly entertaining as they were essentially taking turns seeing who could condemn him the best.

Oh the theatricality of it all.
#22
I'm currently watching the session where the CEO is getting bashed by congressmen.

This is hilarious. It's like a celebrity roast. They call this politics?

"Did you or did you not take the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of drilling"
"I cannot say at the moment."

Rinse repeat a couple hundred times, that's whats going on.
"The future's uncertain, and The End is always near."
-Jim Morrison
#24
Quote by Rogue Hermit
The first part is false. The rig was run by TransOcean, an international drilling company. And about the spill, the captain of the ship (in this case the rig) is held responsible under Maritime law. TransOcean was the company that wanted to drill there, and controls BP's rigs. Their technology wasn't meant for those depths and that pressure, so it failed.

If Obama wanted to do something useful, he would punish TransOcean for their failure. BP is just the figurehead that would profit from the oil somewhere down the line. Conservatives are right for protesting Obama's treatment of BP; the responsibility should fall on TransOcean instead.

Transocean is as international as BP is.
As long as BP gets referred to as British, Transocean can be American.
#25
Quote by Lemoninfluence
the 39% American owned British people.

So it seems that even if they aren't using British Petroleum, the nationality of the company is still an issue.

Those 39% will be paying out the nose too! And won't see any dividends. I don't care which percent pays the most as long as it gets paid for, and I'm not the one footing the bill for their mistakes.
#26
Quote by Amos_Moses
I'm confused, why does nationality matter? A company ****ed up and they should pay for it.


It shouldn't. Whoever is at fault should pay, but it seems as though the nationality thing has been latched onto and used as a scapegoat.
Rhythm in Jump. Dancing Close to You.

Quote by element4433
Yeah. people, like Lemoninfluence, are hypocrites and should have all their opinions invalidated from here on out.
#27
Quote by Amos_Moses
I'm confused, why does nationality matter? A company ****ed up and they should pay for it.

Once again - why shouldn;t that be the company operating the rig? Or the company who built the part which failed?
#28
Quote by Lemoninfluence
It shouldn't. Whoever is at fault should pay, but it seems as though the nationality thing has been latched onto and used as a scapegoat.


It's all that angst that's left over from the revolution finally coming out.
"The future's uncertain, and The End is always near."
-Jim Morrison
#29
Quote by Rogue Hermit
The first part is false. The rig was run by TransOcean, an international drilling company. And about the spill, the captain of the ship (in this case the rig) is held responsible under Maritime law. TransOcean was the company that wanted to drill there, and controls BP's rigs. Their technology wasn't meant for those depths and that pressure, so it failed.

If Obama wanted to do something useful, he would punish TransOcean for their failure. BP is just the figurehead that would profit from the oil somewhere down the line. Conservatives are right for protesting Obama's treatment of BP; the responsibility should fall on TransOcean instead.

Do you punish the dog or the handler? I say kill the dog and fine the handler.
#30
Quote by MightyAl
Once again - why shouldn;t that be the company operating the rig? Or the company who built the part which failed?


If you shake a soda can, and the can explodes when you open it, you don't blame the can. You blame the dumbass who shook it and proceeded to open it.
"The future's uncertain, and The End is always near."
-Jim Morrison
#31
Quote by MightyAl
Transocean is as international as BP is.
As long as BP gets referred to as British, Transocean can be American.


Still, BP shouldn't be held nearly as responsible as people are holding them. They basically give these offshore drilling companies a blank check to get them the oil. It was beyond their jurisdiction when TransOcean drilled and then failed at it.
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#32
Quote by captaincrunk
Do you punish the dog or the handler? I say kill the dog and fine the handler.

which is fine if the Dog has no self awareness and/or obligation to perform the job to a certain level.
Rhythm in Jump. Dancing Close to You.

Quote by element4433
Yeah. people, like Lemoninfluence, are hypocrites and should have all their opinions invalidated from here on out.
#33
EDIT ^ Killed = taking their license to drill.

Quote by MightyAl
Once again - why shouldn;t that be the company operating the rig? Or the company who built the part which failed?

If GM bought sub-par (but inexpensive) parts and used them in the vehicles, I'd still blame GM.
Last edited by captaincrunk at Jun 17, 2010,
#35
Quote by SlinkyBlue
If you shake a soda can, and the can explodes when you open it, you don't blame the can. You blame the dumbass who shook it and proceeded to open it.

True. So why aren't the companies who actually did the drilling in the shit over this?
#36
Quote by captaincrunk
Do you punish the dog or the handler? I say kill the dog and fine the handler.

Quote by SlinkyBlue
If you shake a soda can, and the can explodes when you open it, you don't blame the can. You blame the dumbass who shook it and proceeded to open it.

Thanks for putting it in terms us simpletons can understand.
#37
Quote by Amos_Moses
I'm confused, why does nationality matter? A company ****ed up and they should pay for it.

They're very sensitive. This is basically a slight at the Queen, you see. Like spitting in the old broad's face.
#38
Quote by MightyAl
True. So why aren't the companies who actually did the drilling in the shit over this?


BP is the grand-daddy of these companies, it is in their "jurisdiction" for lack of a better word, to ensure that their pet companies adhere to the safety standards in the industry.

Not only did they fail to do so, they failed to do so on American soil... er, waters.
"The future's uncertain, and The End is always near."
-Jim Morrison
#39
Quote by MightyAl
True. So why aren't the companies who actually did the drilling in the shit over this?


BP must know something about this that we don't, otherwise they would've thrown them under the bus a long time ago.
#40
Quote by SlinkyBlue
Not only did they fail to do so, they failed to do so on American soil... er, waters.


And that makes it so much worse?
Rhythm in Jump. Dancing Close to You.

Quote by element4433
Yeah. people, like Lemoninfluence, are hypocrites and should have all their opinions invalidated from here on out.
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