Time’s Dirty Oil Dozen

Time Magazine’s new issue focuses on the oil disaster in the gulf.  In the article 12 people are specifically named as culprits in the fiasco.  There are the usual suspects like the CEO of BP Tony Hayward and John Browne- the former CEO who presided over a period of dynamic expansion at BP, but his cost-cutting may have contributed to the company’s checkered safety record. Chris Oynes sits at position #3 and was the top Interior Department official who, until he retired May 31, oversaw offshore oil- and gas-drilling for the Minerals Management Service [whose name belies the truth]. BP’s COO Doug Suttles is #4

Guess who are tied at #5?  Dick and George, of course, oil men themselves, with their demand for fewer government regulations.  I might also throw in Congress and the people who voted on this lessening of regulations, but it was Bush and Cheney leading the way.

The American car driver comes in at #7.  Perhaps they ought to be moved higher on the list as it is their demand for cheap gas as well as their resistance to any new taxes that brought on the demand for more and cheaper oil.

Obama and Salazar are numbers 8 and 9. Neither thought it necessary to amend the lax regulations that were solidified under Bush and Cheney.  Salazar himself, as a member of Congress,  was not unfriendly to the fossil fuel industry.

S. Elizabeth Birnbaum lands the #10 spot- she was the former head of MMS. Those serving under her complained that she had done almost nothing to fix problems that have plagued the minerals agency for over a decade and that she was pretty much a hands-off manager, rarely leaving her Washington office.

The CEO of Transocean, the Swiss company that owned the Deepwater Horizon rig, Steve Newman is #11.  The president of global business at Halliburton, the contractor responsible for cementing the well, Tim Probert, rounds out the dirty dozen.

I’m thinking that President Obama ought to be much higher on the list.  Even I knew that Bush and Cheney made deals with the fossil fuel CEO’s early on in their administration to loosen oversight of their businesses.  Why didn’t Obama jump in shortly after he was inaugurated to demand that all of the loosened regulations be tightened?  He could have easily done that but he did nothing.  Shame on him.


5 thoughts on “Time’s Dirty Oil Dozen

  1. I received a phone call just now from Up the Flag, a regular here on MMR. His computer has been in the repair shop, but he heard about the ‘dirty Dozen’ and wanted to talk about it. I told him that I just blogged on that topic.

    He said, “Obama needs to fire Salazar! That SOB is one of the most incompetent people he could have put in that cabinet positions.” Up the Flag reminded me that Ken Salazar, as a senator in 2006, he voted to end protections that limit offshore oil drilling in Florida’s Gulf Coast. A year later he voted against a bill that would require the United States Army Corps of Engineers to consider global warming when planning water projects.

    It is to be noted also that Salazar supported the nomination of Gale Norton to Secretary of the Interior under the Bush Administration. She was totally inept in that position and became a patsy to oil, coal and gas interests and earned the ire of environmentalists.

    I agree with UtF- let his head roll!

  2. The US driver should pay waaaayyyyy more in taxes on petroleum in regard to funding infrastructure repairs alone. US roads are similar to those in developing nations for poor repair.

    Also, money could be used to fund public transportation. The US needs rail and other alternatives to the peronal car.

  3. I keep hearing from you guys about Bush’s “lax regulations”…name em.

    In speciffic, name what safety regulation Bush altered or was lax on that caused this to happen.
    From what I keep hearing and reading, the OBAMA administration, had just recently given the exploding oil rig an award for safety!

    And if those regulations were so lax…where was Obama for almost 2 years in rectifying them?
    The “Blame Bush” era is done and over with and, yes kids, it’s time you took your heads out of the sand and recognized the fact that all the “bad policy” from the Bush administration that Obama has been running on for close to 2 years…is now OBAMA’S policy!

    Be it war policy, homeland security policy, oil policy, financial policy…if it was bad under Bush and Obama is still using it…it’s now officially HIS and HIS alone!
    As well as the RESPONSIBILITY when things go wrong!

    It would be nice for you to be able to Blame Bush’s “lax policies” and exonerate Obama as if he just took the job yeasterday…but you can’t. At least not while attempting to appear like a competent individual.

  4. And if those regulations were so lax…where was Obama for almost 2 years in rectifying them?

    I already gave a sharp criticism to Obama for this above.

  5. That was “sharp”?
    My theory is that Obama didn’t want to alienate that campaign money from BP anytime soon.

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