BP and the Oil Disaster

Yes, we all know the overly reported, multiple failed attempts by BP to stop oil from gushing out from a mile undersea have created a tragedy. And, I assign much of the blame for this epic failure to BP (of course, the same could have happened to anyone else, so Exxon, Chevron, Shell and Halliburton, stop laughing at BP and make sure the same thing doesn’t happen to you), but I think that there is a bigger problem here than just a massive quantity of oil gushing out into the open sea extensively threatening wildlife and the livelihoods of many (after that characterization, can there really be a larger problem?).

We obviously now know, that BP and friends operated without having an emergency plan just in case something happened. We also know that the governmental agencies charged with the duties of making sure nothing goes terribly wrong, were not doing their jobs. Government not doing their job…what a surprise.

That problem, I believe, is the constant bombardment and pressure applied to BP from people that don’t know the first thing about their operations (note: this doesn’t include certain governmental agencies, which should have had extensive knowledge of BP’s processes), including the media and citizens (which is why I shall not give any advice to BP-I am not qualified to do so). When BP opened up their suggestion hotline, they got thousands upon thousands of suggestions from people from all walks of life. Seems great right? The people involved in issues of national importance. No, it’s not. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that we should have a passive populace, I’m simply saying that an economist/political scientist/English major should not be able or allowed to do what engineers, geologists and other scientists should be doing.

If this suggestion hotline was available only to those that had some knowledge in the process or the environment or some other part of the actual oil problem, the suggestions would have been filtered into those that probably made some sense.

The same argument applies to any other field, would you like an engineer or economist or cook to perform surgery on you?

It appears at this point in time, more than a month into this disaster, and I know that this is hard to tell someone personally affected by this crisis, that we should stop worrying about this issue as a people. Please note, this does not mean the president should stop worrying about this, because this is his job. No matter how much pressure we apply to BP, it won’t help. Right now, BP has the largest stake in this oil spill, it is losing millions of dollars every minute. And they care about that money…

Applying pressure to BP will do nothing, it will actually make things worse. Currently, most of the food supply is unaffected by the spill, but this constant mentioning of it on the news is scaring people from going there. People won’t go to beaches in the southern United States even if they weren’t affected by oil. A lot of the economic results of the spill are due only to fear.

BP can fix only the problem they are responsible and that is the oil spill, let’s not create a bigger problem by causing a decline in economic activity because of fear…


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