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Gulf oil spill: Who's in charge?

Lots of oiled birds, dying jellyfish, oil on the beach in Louisiana while BP prepares for the "top kill" (see graphic) Wednesday morning that executive Doug Suttles says is a 6 or 7 on a scale of 1 to 10, with a 10 being a sure-bet fix.

Ken Salazar, the interior secretary, has threatened to take the whole project away from BP if the company doesn't hurry up and seal the well. Unanswered is what, exactly, Salazar is talking about: Does the U.S. government have some tool or technique that is currently sitting on the sideline while we watch BP try to cap the Deepwater Horizon well? No -- and that's what Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen has said all along. So I'm going to presume that Salazar's widely-reported comment is nothing more than bluster. He's made a lot of noise in the past month, but it's not clear that he has had a single useful idea to deal with the gulf oil disaster.

It is, however, rather confusing as to who is in charge of the disaster. There continues to be a weird arrangement in which BP seems to call most of the shots. The government, in the form of the EPA, told BP to stop using the Corexit dispersant and BP said, in effect, buzz off.

Meanwhile, just now an email came over the transom from a spokeperson at the Unified Command in Robert, La., trying to clarify the command structure of the response. The gist is that the government IS in charge but is collaborating with BP (does Salazar know this??):

Federal authorities have been on scene from the very beginning -- since the first hours of this disaster when it began as a search and rescue mission. Second, the National Incident Commander, Adm. Thad Allen, USCG, and the Federal On Scene Coordinator, Rear Adm. Mary Landry, are directing efforts and are accountable for this response. Third, at the Unified Area Command, we are working to ensure that BP, the responsible party, is meeting its obligations, pursuing all possible contingencies, and bringing the right resources to respond to this spill. Additionally, when necessary, we are also ensuring that federal resources are there to fill in the gaps.

That all being said, this spill is incredibly complex - especially given the fact that the leak is nearly a mile under water where the only means of getting at it is through the use of remotely operated vehicles. Since the technology to get at this site is owned by the private sector -- in this case, BP -- collaboration with them is necessary. In order to respond effectively, ensure BP is held accountable for cleanup and the environmental damage caused, and, most importantly, stop the leak, federal agencies and BP must collaborate.

I think I understand. BP is the ballerina and the U.S. government is the Stage Mother.

That said, this is shaping up as such an awful situation that, if the top kill doesn't work, you can expect DRAMATIC ACTION (for the sake of dramatic action if nothing else), which means bureaucratic shake-ups, new policies, new edicts, new bluster and bloviation, and almost certainly at least one human sacrifice.

--

Update 4 p.m.:

Just watched the Thad Allen/Robert Gibbs presser and it did not entirely clarify the who's-in-charge question.

Let me scare up an instant transcript...

[...Muzak...adjusting short-wave radio ... affixing aluminum foil to rabbit ears...]

Here we go.

Allen began with a statement outlining the command structure. Excerpt:

The current paradigm for responding to oil spills really dates back to the legislation that was passed after the Exxon Valdez, Oil Pollution Act of 1990. It mandated a paradigm by which the responsible party or the spiller would be held accountable. It also created an Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund to fund responses where there was no responsible party or to fund operations and have those funds recouped from the responsible party.

It's premised on the country being divided up into areas for the purpose of developing contingency plans, and we have these areas called captain of the port zones. Those are the Coast Guard commanders that are responsible for that area. They get together with the state and local stakeholders, and they develop plans to protect the most sensitive areas within those areas. And they're called area contingency plans.

Like you, my first thought is: Brother, can you paradigm.

He went on like this for a while and then took questions and most of the questions boiled down to, "Who in tarnation is in charge of this thing?"

QUESTION: Thank you. Thanks for being here, Admiral. Let me start on that point about who's in charge and the quality of the response so far.

Secretary Salazar said yesterday, referring to BP, "If we find that they're not doing what they're supposed to be doing, we'll push them out of the way appropriately." What does that mean, push them out of the way? What more could be done?

ALLEN: Well, I would -- I would -- I would say that that's more of a metaphor [bluster]. What we need to make sure is that they execute their responsibilities as the responsibility party, and we carry out our responsibilities and be accountable as the federal on-scene coordinators.

And so what we do is, if something is going -- if BP is applying resources or there is an operation being conducted, we want it to be done some other way, they are issued an order by the federal on-scene coordinator and they comply, and there have been adjustments made all the way along, and if I need to, I call -- I call Tony Hayward myself. They are the responsible party, but we have the authority to direct.

I think that's pretty clear. But reporters kept asking variations of the same question.

BP is "the responsible party" but the feds are "accountable."

(The over-under on the human sacrifice is 48 hours...)

Wait, there's more:

QUESTION: You said, as well, in response to Ben's question, if BP were to stand out of the way, it raises the question of who would step in. Mr. Suttles today from BP said it would be within the government's area to step in if they wanted to. What does that mean? Could the government step in? Does it have the capacity to do so?

ALLEN: I hear everybody say that, and I'm not sure what that term really means. I know that, to work down there right now, you need remotely operated vehicles. You need to do very technical work at 5,000 feet. You need equipment and expertise that's not generally within the government -- federal government, in terms of competency, capability or capacity.

There may be some other way to get it, but I'm a national incident commander. And right now, the relationship with BP is the way I think we should move forward.


By Joel Achenbach  |  May 24, 2010; 2:31 PM ET
 
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Next: The top kill: Cross your fingers

Comments

It is about time for a good human sacrifice, given how much other life is being taken.

Posted by: Yoki | May 24, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Got 'mudged, so here's yer repeat:

I'm a little late on the Anthony Bourdain/pig parts thread, but here goes:

Rectum? It nearly killed 'im!

-rimshot-

Posted by: Gomer144 | May 24, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Gomer144 | May 24, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

*Snort*

Posted by: Yoki | May 24, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Semi-mudged twice in one day!

Joel's new kit is exactly what RD_P and I were discussing this morning . . . two kits ago now.

I'm thinking of watching UP tonight. Something light and hopeful for a change.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 24, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

I guess a human sacrifice to the crude gods is only like a 4 or 5 on the fix-a-f@%k-up scale. Although I can think of a few folks that we could shove down the pipe who might clog it even better than mud. Rush tops my list.

Posted by: Gomer144 | May 24, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Human Sacrifices, I assume this means more hearings on the Hill.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | May 24, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Heads will roll within certain gummint depts, professionally speaking. That's already a given, whether the top kill succeeds or not.

Short of waiting for the relief well to kick in, what's BP's next plan if the top kill is ineffective? What additional steps are being taken to prevent the oil from reaching shore?

Based on the Mother Jones link provided in the last boodle, it sounds like a lot more effort could be put on cleanup and containment. Gotta say I haven't been impressed, but y'all already know that.

Posted by: MsJS | May 24, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

I think you are quite right about the Dramatic Action. It is all part of confusing process with results.

And although I really like the stage mother analogy, I think Unified Command seems like someplace where you salute a lot. This is a war, and BP is being accused of being overly timid. Maybe they are being careful because they don't want to make things worse. Maybe they are being timid because they are afraid of the repercussions if they do make it worse. I don't know.

But I do know that if the government is going to begin calling the shots, then the government is going to end up with a greater responsibility if decisions forced on BP end up causing more harm than good.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 24, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

The circular firing squad is probably forming as we speak. The trick is to find a scapegoat who can't turn whistle-blower. (I wonder what scapegoat tastes like?)

Posted by: yellojkt | May 24, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Of 139 copies in the DC library system only five are available. Talking the "Girl with the Dragon Tattoo"

Posted by: omni3 | May 24, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

I get the impression that amongst the MMS folks there is not a lot of technical expertise that would dare contradict a BP engineer. Not on a GS salary. And I think most of the BP guys are winging it as well.

So unless there is some combination of Red Adair and Lloyd Bridges out there, we are stuck with the usual gang of idiots.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 24, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Jail, baby, jail.

Posted by: rs12 | May 24, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Gomer, I'm not sure a rimshot is a good idea for a rectum joke. Just sayin'.

Meanwhile, I think a junk shot composed of golf balls, cat hair (furballs will do), knotted rope, and the course-chopped bodies (or at least the bones, unchopped) of BP's top management would stand an excellent chance of success. Worst case, it won't stop the leak, but it will take care of BP's management. Also, just to be sure, I say we include ALL former Halliburton CEOs. You know who you are, Dick.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 24, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

"Scapegoat" tastes like crow, yello.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 24, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

SEE WHERE JANET NAPOLITANO CALLED THE GULF THE "OCEAN?" WHAT FOOLS OBOZO THE CLOWN HAS IN HIS ADMINISTRATION.

I think we should start THE OBOZO IMPEACHMENT IMMEDIATELY. When he took the oath of office, he swore to uphold and defend the constitution and laws of the US. Well, OBOZO is going directly AGAINST the laws and directly AGAINST what the people of this country want. The sooner that OBOZO THE CLOWN gets the boot, the better we'll be. Once he's out of office, maybe we can find out the truth about him and we can DEPORT him to Kenya along with his auntie and all his other friends.

HOW CAN ANYONE BE A DEMOCRAT?

Posted by: charlietuna666 | May 24, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

jkt,

punch line of the Red Adair joke...

WOW, that was just amazing I can't believe that you did that! Red, what's the first thing that you are going to do just as soon as you get cleaned up?

Get a brake job done on my truck.

Posted by: russianthistle | May 24, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

yello, regarding your 3:34, I cannot say what scapegoat tastes like, not having eaten any. However, there are a number of good cheeses made from scapegoat milk. According to wiki, these include scapebucheron, scapeclochette, Scapecouronne Lochoise, La Scapee Crottin de Chavignol (largest produced scapegoat cheese), Scapepélardon, scapepicodon, Pouligny Saint-Pierre de la Scapois, Rocamadour {destined to become a rock song if I ever heard of one], Sainte-Maure de Touraine et de Scapoir, Chabichou du Poitou du Scapeau [my little cabbage patch scaekid], and Valençay Scapay.

In England we find Scapepantysgawn, a Welsh scapegoat's milk cheese. And of course, TBG would never forgive me if I omitted Scapefeta.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 24, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Put Charlie the Tuna in that junk shot formulary, please. Might make a good binder.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 24, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Of course the government has a fix-all to this problem but BP and their big money won't allow it because it would render the well unusable. BP has too much invested in this deep well to surrender it and with $6B(illion) dollars in profit a quarter they will barely show a loss if at all for this quarter. 100 days at $10M(illion) a day is only $1B9illion) dollars. They have quite a ways to go to hurt BP so BP can keep trying all these processes to still allow them to capture the oil.

That's the world we live in when money controls the decisions. Politicians that won't step on big oil's toes because of campaign contributions and news media that won't report the real story for fear that advertising money the station gets from politicians and big money corporations will be withdrawn.

Bon Apetite on some 40 weight oil for the next ten years or more.

Posted by: ensiv | May 24, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

The lawyers are already being wrangled:

http://www.nola.com/news/gulf-oil-spill/index.ssf/2010/05/legal_maneuvering_may_situate.html

Part of the case hinges on the applicability of some maritime laws in place since mudge was still trimming sails on the whalers.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 24, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Celery and lots of Mayo, too. No onions.

Posted by: russianthistle | May 24, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Charlie, Charlie, Charlie.

"Is the Gulf Of Mexico an ocean?

ANSWER:
It is a gulf by title, but part of the Atlantic ocean. It is a gulf because it is Semi-surrounded by land on more than one side.

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Is_the_Gulf_Of_Mexico_an_ocean

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 24, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

No one mentions the obvious option: hire Exxon to fix it.

Answering Satanic Tuna: Bebe Rebozo666

And, the sock puppet mystery is solved.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 24, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Pardon me, but I am still trying to get over Duck breasts stuffed with cream cheese.

Posted by: russianthistle | May 24, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

And -- not that it will do a d@mn bit of good, considering who we're dealing with here -- this from Wikipedia:

"The Gulf of Mexico (Spanish: Golfo de México) is the eleventh largest body of water in the world. Considered a smaller part of the Atlantic Ocean, it is an ocean basin largely surrounded by the North American continent and the island of Cuba. It is bounded on the northeast, north and northwest by the Gulf Coast of the United States, on the southwest and south by Mexico, and on the southeast by Cuba. The shape of its basin is roughly oval and approximately 810 nautical miles (1,500 km) wide and filled with sedimentary rocks and debris. It is part of the Atlantic Ocean through the Florida Straits between the U.S. and Cuba, and with the Caribbean Sea (with which it forms the American Mediterranean Sea) via the Yucatan Channel between Mexico and Cuba."

Pardon me while I clear my throat. *cough couch a--hat cough cough*

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 24, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

In the good ol' days the president would just federalize the nation's fluid dynamicists.

Posted by: Boomslang | May 24, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Who would inflict cream cheese on a poor innocent duck breast?

Posted by: Yoki | May 24, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

I'm trying to come up with some brainstorm to rival Michael Keaton in 'Night Shift':

"Take LIVE tuna fish, and FEED 'em mayonnaise!"

Maybe a beachfront Jiffy Lube franchise.

Rather than wash the seabirds, start a seagull flambe chain.

Start a nightly beachfront stunt spectacular like Waterworld show at Universal Studios. They'll save a fortune on the pyrotechnics.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 24, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

I added some transcriptish stuff to the kit, fyi.

Posted by: joelache | May 24, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

dynamicsists ??

Posted by: Boomslang | May 24, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, Mr. A. I guess we should all cheer that Adm. Allen's relationship with BP is the way to move forward.

Do we know when the Admiral is retiring and what his post-Coast Guard plans are? I got a nose for these things and I smell oil in his future.

Posted by: MsJS | May 24, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Actually, I don't blame them for being vague. Vagueness is a form of protection. The moment things become crystal-clear there's liability.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 24, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

There's vague and then there's idiocy, Mudge.

As for liability, the Admiral is already likely to be one of the scapegoats once this settles out. But he's 61 years old with roughly 40 years of service. He'll retire from the CC on a full pension and take a liaison job somewhere. You already know where I think that'll be.

Posted by: MsJS | May 24, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

Ya think, Mudge? Of course, if crystal-clearness benefits BP, the world will know instantly.

Posted by: slyness | May 24, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Joel, how were you to eat the cream cheese (and Jalapeno) stuffed Duck Breasts? Slap it on a bagel?

Posted by: russianthistle | May 24, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

I'm getting the distinct impression that Thad Allen has now clue whatsoever what he is talking about. Not that I would either, but I'm not being paid to.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 24, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

And, Joel, on a serious note, I have seen little on how folks are really dealing with the day-to-day loss of their livelihood and if they are being compensated right now. I am sure that there are reports, but most of the coverage has been about the technical aspects of protecting the shoreline and fisheries as well as stopping the dang leak.

What has Louisiana done and the Feds to step in and help folks with their immediate survival needs? Or, are they all on their own and scrambling to make ends meet?

Posted by: russianthistle | May 24, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

THANK GOD BP IS ALLOWING OUR GOVERNMENT TO GO TO THE GULF AND SEE WHAT DAMAGE WAS DONE BY THEIR OIL WELL,PROVES TO ME THAT BIG BUSINESS IS RUNNING OUR GOVERNMENT.WHERE IS TEDDY ROOSEVELT? OUR POLITICIANS ARE TOO CORRUPT AND TOO CLOSE TO BIG BUSINESS.

Posted by: SISSD1 | May 24, 2010 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Jumper - The wise commentariat at Mother Jones has that covered:
------------------

Seize all BP assets on US soil immediately through US military and national Guard.

Sell/auction off all rights to rigs/wells/stations etc. through freemarket to another operator (e.g. Exxon, Chevron, etc.)

Use proceeds to clean-up Gulf, employee clean-up workers, establish more effective regulatory/investigative agencies.

GAME-OVER for BP.

Just like any small business would face in complete disregard of safety and risk that effects others.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon May. 24, 2010 12:43 PM PDT.
------------

Posted by: Bob-S | May 24, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Oh, did we wish each other a jolly Victoria Day?

Posted by: Bob-S | May 24, 2010 5:20 PM | Report abuse

SISSD1? Not a history buff? Teddy Roosevelt? I think you are taking in the "spin" or the new history of the late President. In fact, many would claim that a disaster like this would happen with TR as he was more of a merchantilist President than we have had in a while.

To me, this is the same twisted history that we are seeing with the meme that this country was founded by devout Christians who really wanted to have Christianity be part of the fabric of the federal government.

Just because it is in the new Texas derived school books, it doesn't make it so.

Posted by: russianthistle | May 24, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

And finally (for a while, anyway)- Some of the comments here (and many of the comments elsewhere) illustrate why I found that Mother Jones comment about a supposed paucity of outrage to be both amusing and misinformed.

Looks like plenty of outrage to go around. Maybe that person was just disappointed because there haven't been any colorful eco-terrorist acts down Louisiana-way yet? Some people seem to prefer their outrage really, really loud.

Posted by: Bob-S | May 24, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

SISS boom ba

urbandictionary: the sound of a sheep exploding

Posted by: talitha1 | May 24, 2010 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Okay, don't think I'm crazy and perhaps y'all have touched upon this (haven't read through all Achenbach blogs and/or comments past and present on this oil spill debacle) ... but what about the Kevin Costner deal? Apparently, Costner has invested 15 years and about $24 million in a novel way of sifting oil spills, and now BP and the Coast Guard are planning to test six of his massive, stainless-steel centrifugal oil separators this week or next.

Posted by: jlessl | May 24, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, pretty interesting about the Costner device. Tests are underway, it'll be cool if it's helpful.

Posted by: Bob-S | May 24, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm...is this the same Coast Guard Commandant Thad Allen who told the AP late last week that federal law prevents the government from taking over the spill disaster? (Source: 'More wondering: Why is BP still in charge of oil spill response?', By Matthew Daly, AP, May 22, 2010)
In that same media account, Commandant Allen is quoted as saying, "The basic notion is you hold the responsible party accountable, with regime oversight" from the government.
So that's it folks, our government is providing "regime oversight." In other words, wake them when it's over...

Posted by: mtpeaks | May 24, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

Few if any Post readers know how misinformed the reporter for this article is or how stupid the EPA has been. The EPA actually told BP to use more toxic, not less toxic chemicals.

For details see http://ergament.blogspot.com/2010/05/making-energy-extraction-disaster-worse.html

Posted by: AppDev | May 24, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

The very sad thing is no amount of money or fines will bring back the dead and dying in the Gulf.

Posted by: JRM2 | May 24, 2010 6:07 PM | Report abuse

What's the big deal? It's pretty obvious what is going on.

1) The federal govt does not have the technology necessary to cap the well nor the expertise needed to use that technology

2) BP has the technology and expertise, so the federal goverment is beholden upon BP to do the actual fixing at the government's command.

It's really not that hard to figure out if you LISTEN and PAY ATTENTION.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | May 24, 2010 6:25 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for linking to that animation, Joel. It all looks so straight-forward.

But, then again, so did the animation for the containment dome.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 24, 2010 6:28 PM | Report abuse

The Mother Jones author assumes that there is one, and only one, way to express outrage.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 24, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Mama always told me I had to clean up my own messes, so as far as I'm concerned, BP has to do this job with some help from their Halliburton buddies. And those who scream when the government tries to institute regulations should stand on shore and cheer while BP and Halliburton do the job and the government agencies stay out of the way.

Posted by: jlhare1 | May 24, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure if the human sacrifice idea is going to work. But, you know, Angus *does* already have the grill out.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 24, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Costner appears to me to have, well, 15 years more than most.

I heard another extreme solution which was to force-empty every possible tanker in the Gulf into refinery capacity and dispatch the entire empty fleet to do inefficient but massive skimming operations. There's that.

I sense some of this surfacing in some corporate PR suits and in mass media, and in public, but hasn't it always?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunning%E2%80%93Kruger_effect

Lots of proposals tend to presuppose a surgical penetration tactic at the wellhead. One wishes that were easier.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 24, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Kerr-McGee, ExxonMobil, Norske Hydro, Phillips, Unocal, EEX. These outfits have or had some skilz.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 24, 2010 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Hello, Ethan.

I've seen you over on Sargent's blog. You can be pretty insightful.

A suggestion:
1) All-capped words tend to move the regular readers of this blog away from a post rather than towards it. It may be counterintuitive, but there it is.

As to whether anything is getting fixed and who's commanding whom, I'm not willing to reach definitive conclusions just yet about either.

Posted by: MsJS | May 24, 2010 6:42 PM | Report abuse


Someone should seriously consider loading a mid-yield tactical fission nuke onto one of the robot submersibles, transporting it to the wellhead, and cauterizing the spill. If that cannot close that leak, I don't know what could.

Posted by: thardman | May 24, 2010 6:43 PM | Report abuse

If the Republicans / Conservatives have it there way the government would have absolutely no power or say to intervene. Hey let the good ole corporate boys do the right thing. Weeks later and still no resolution to this mess! But as the article say, in the end BP is responsible and the US Government is accountable. Well all you "Right Wing" nuts take a chew out of your misguided sense of Capitalism. When the Constitution was created they did not have offshore oil wells or technology. "Evolve!"

Posted by: KBrustmeyer2003 | May 24, 2010 6:44 PM | Report abuse

incomprehensible is good but criminal would be even beter to describe this thing. Wow. Hey where are all the Drill Baby folks now?

Posted by: mjenk60995 | May 24, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

You guys are so doomed.
G,nite.

Posted by: Boomslang | May 24, 2010 6:54 PM | Report abuse


Unlike the previous Gov of Louisiana and Mayor of N.O. during Katrina, Jendal knows exactly what to to and is doing as much as he can. He has requested what he needs from the Fed but they are to busy blaming BP and 'studying' the situation. Today's press conf. with Salizar and Napolitano really did shed light on how totally inept and political this Administration is in handling the disaster. To top it off Durbin made a totally useless appearance further confirming how excruciating the Lib Dem political hacks are and an embarrassment. Jendal really was the only credible presence on the scene.


Posted by: FraudObama | May 24, 2010 6:54 PM | Report abuse

There's vague and then there's idiocy, Mudge.

As for liability, the Admiral is already likely to be one of the scapegoats once this settles out. But he's 61 years old with roughly 40 years of service. He'll retire from the CC on a full pension and take a liaison job somewhere. You already know where I think that'll be.

Posted by: MsJS | May 24, 2010 4:59 PM |

==========================================

One thing going for Admiral Allen is that he has a lot of respect from both lawmakers and the American people. If there are going to be human sacrifices let's start with the POS politician Salazar who doesn't know what the hell he's talking about.

Posted by: bbface21 | May 24, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

We are under minor Front Page Alert. Imagine if we were in the big type.

And to fair, for many Mother Jones readers, nationalizing an oil company would be the appropriate response to an overturned tractor trailer.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 24, 2010 6:59 PM | Report abuse

Jumper - The wise commentariat at Mother Jones has that covered:
------------------

Seize all BP assets on US soil immediately through US military and national Guard.

Sell/auction off all rights to rigs/wells/stations etc. through freemarket to another operator (e.g. Exxon, Chevron, etc.)

Use proceeds to clean-up Gulf, employee clean-up workers, establish more effective regulatory/investigative agencies.

GAME-OVER for BP.

Just like any small business would face in complete disregard of safety and risk that effects others.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon May. 24, 2010 12:43 PM PDT.
------------

Posted by: Bob-S | May 24, 2010 5:17 PM

========================================

Okay, what statutes and/or regulations would enable the federal government to do what you recommended? Unless there are laws to allow it it sounds like something Hugo Chavez would do.

Posted by: bbface21 | May 24, 2010 7:04 PM | Report abuse

I was unsure what was harder to watch, the video of all those herons drowning in oil or that brave little Admiral Allen that Obama and Gibbs through out to take the heat for that gutless spineless administration.

Posted by: greatgran1 | May 24, 2010 7:13 PM | Report abuse

bbface,
Just to parse this for you, Bob-S is showing that an anonymous Mother Jones commentator is advocating this; he is not. But Mother Jones readers tend to be suspicious of Ralph Nader as being in the pocket of corporate interests.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 24, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Ladies, I'm crocheting booms as fast as my fingers can fly. Any yarn in the bunker?

Posted by: talitha1 | May 24, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

mudge,
Here is some hope for you in case your medical ills become too great:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/05/24/AR2010052403056.html?hpid=topnews

Time to dust off that Glaucoma Test Pilot License.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 24, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

They need a Strong Man. Someone like Stalin or Chavez. No stinking due process.

Good thing my emotions don't follow that tide. Because my emotions are powered by jet skis. Which are powered by... uh oh.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 24, 2010 7:21 PM | Report abuse

I was shocked to learn that drill really meant grind.

Posted by: Boomslang | May 24, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

One thing we do know; Obama hasn't got a clue. Does he have an oil czar?

Posted by: logicprevails | May 24, 2010 7:43 PM | Report abuse

Montreal and Philadelphia are tied 1-1 with about 3:30 left in the 1st period.

Posted by: MsJS | May 24, 2010 7:44 PM | Report abuse

boodle doily booms
will hold back toxic trollspill
thanks to talitha

Posted by: DNA_Girl | May 24, 2010 7:47 PM | Report abuse

bbface, I recognize and acknowledge that some people, respect Adm. Allen.

I don't happen one of them. Not that it matters one iota either way.

Posted by: MsJS | May 24, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

DNA_Girl, I also weave a very effective booby trap.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 24, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

jumper. I hadn't said it but was thinking the same thing about turning it over to Exxon

The duck should opt for silicone, or at least saline. it has a more natural feel than cheese

Posted by: omni3 | May 24, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

Naturally, the answer has to be crochet! Thanks, Talitha, for working so hard to save the Gulf. The bunker yarn inventory is waay down so I'll make a run to thread and yarn outlet in Gastonia. Cotton, do you think? Or would wool be better? I've got some funds in petty cash so I don't have to ask Mudge for a purchase order. Shhh!

Posted by: slyness | May 24, 2010 8:22 PM | Report abuse

Definitely wool, slyness, as it's much more absorbent and flexible. And the sheep need the work. Save the cotton in case the top fill operation doesn't work. Should make some fine nooses.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 24, 2010 8:34 PM | Report abuse

For you Dragon Tatoo fans, here's an article about the ugly aftermath of the author's death re: his lack of a will and the fight between his father and brother vs his longtime companion.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/23/magazine/23Larsson-t.html?src=me&ref=homepage

Posted by: rickoshea11 | May 24, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Read the 1990 Law put into place after Exxon Valdez...It is the law that the responsible party in this case BP conduct clean up, and capping of the oil spillage. Additionally, US Government does not capability to do either. There is not a damn thing Obama Adminstration can do that BP is not already doing. It is not in BP's interest to let one ounce of oil spill. For each drop they lose to the Gulf they lose revenue and increase their liability...Stop carping about something that this government has no control...none.

Posted by: october30 | May 24, 2010 8:38 PM | Report abuse

Instead of the Girl, am reading the other ... Butterfield 8

couldn't seem to get started on Evi's satire

Posted by: omni3 | May 24, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

I will preface this comment by saying my hand rarely finds itself to the Republican lever when I'm in a voting booth and that my only problem with the current administration until now has been its overly moderate response to health care and financial reform. I will also note that the seeds for this accident were planted and took root during the Bush administration.

The botched regulatory process that led to the accident lies squarely on Bush's doorstep; the botched cleanup process, although complicated by the regulatory failures that preceded it, lies on Obama's. What galls me is Salazar's contention that the government's job is to keep the boot on BP's neck. While the federal government cannot cap the well without BP's support, there should be no question about who is in charge of the effort to protect the coast from the oil that has reached the surface. Yes, BP needs to be made to foot the bill, but there should be no doubt about who's running the show. The federal government should not be begging BP to change its dispersant. It should be handing BP the bill for whatever dispersant it believes should be used and managing how it gets dispersed.

I would greatly appreciate it if none of the thousands of real or pseudo "small government" supporters on this board agree with me. You have no right to pipe in on this one unless it is to praise the Obama administration for its hands off response.

Posted by: exco | May 24, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

Heartbreak:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ynews/ynews_sc2199

Posted by: -TBG- | May 24, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

I will preface this comment by saying my hand rarely finds itself to the Republican lever when I'm in a voting booth and that my only problem with the current administration until now has been its overly moderate response to health care and financial reform. I will also note that the seeds for this accident were planted and took root during the Bush administration.

The botched regulatory process that led to the accident lies squarely on Bush's doorstep; the botched cleanup process, although complicated by the regulatory failures that preceded it, lies on Obama's. What galls me is Salazar's contention that the government's job is to keep the boot on BP's neck. While the federal government cannot cap the well without BP's support, there should be no question about who is in charge of the effort to protect the coast from the oil that has reached the surface. Yes, BP needs to be made to foot the bill, but there should be no doubt about who's running the show. The federal government should not be begging BP to change its dispersant. It should be handing BP the bill for whatever dispersant it believes should be used and managing how it gets dispersed.

I would greatly appreciate it if none of the thousands of real or pseudo "small government" supporters on this board agree with me. You have no right to pipe in on this one unless it is to praise the Obama administration for its hands-off response. By your definition of government's role, the federal government should do absolutely nothing.

Posted by: exco | May 24, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

The answer is pretty easy. BP is incompetent. Obama is not even close to being competent. So they all fiddle while the Gulf fills up with sludge.. It's about time for Obama to give another pretty speech, isn't it?

Posted by: sameolddoc | May 24, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Well, it is very evident that Team Obama is ‘LEADERSHIP ADVERSE’! Why have an executive if they resist leading?? They have at least four states in dire straights for help, and Team Obama DITHERS!! DAY # 35 AND HE WON’T GET IT IN GEAR!!
What is Big Sis doing about the requests made by the governor of LA on MAY 2?? Understand from Gibb’s briefing today that they are ‘REVIEWING PLANS”!! All Salazar is doing is POINTING THE FINGER AT OTHERS! Folks, we have neophytes dithering – led by the ditherer – in – chief!! They are in charge and are proving that they are not up to the challenge. WHAT A CRYING SHAME!!

This has been going on for over a month, and the Obama Administration has done NOTHING BUT POINT THE FINGERS AT OTHERS, AND NOW ……. APPOINTING A COMMISSION!! WHAT LEADERSHIP …. NOT!!!

The White House press conference on May 24 was no more that a first class ‘goat roping’ with essentially NO PLAN announced other than – “THIS IS WHY WE HAVE CREATED A COMMISSION!” For Pete’s sake, Obama appears to be incapable of establishing priorities!!! HINT! STOP THE LEAD FIRST!!

On May 21, Robert Gibbs provided the feeble excuse that 'it was all about who was going to pay for the clean up." For Pete's sake, they were not concerned about who was going to pay for the following:

* The Stimulus
* The Auto Bailouts
* The TARP
* OBAMACARE
* The Bank in Chicago where Valerie Jarrett served on the board

But, when it comes to saving jobs in the Delta, LA, MS, and AL -- not to mention FL, Obama seems to be totally impotent! WHY?

A bigger question is now looming over his administration: WHY HAVE A DEPARTMENT OF INTERIOR; HOME LAND SECURITY; OR DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY IF YOU ARE NOT GOING TO USE THEM FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE PEOPLE WHO PAY TAXES??

The Obama Administration is coming across as the most incompetent in modern history. They are proving as each day goes by that it is ALL ABOUT THEM, AND NOT ABOUT THE PEOPLE OF THE USA!

Posted by: wheeljc | May 24, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse

It's funny how quickly the anti-government right wing wants toe government to take over once private industry has created a big mess.

Drill, baby, drill.

Posted by: hithere2 | May 24, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse

I pretty much agree with you, exco.

And except for a few drive-bys, I dont' think you'll find many (if any) "small government" supporters here.

Posted by: -TBG- | May 24, 2010 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Yes, those dithering neophytes cause all sorts of problems.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 24, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

It appears that this nation is suffering from misguided priority, i.e. too much attention ( and resource) was spent on the green energy development, while very little study and development has been done on safety issues of nuclear power and deep sea oil/gas drilling. Obama has recently stressed the need of nuclear power and oil drilling as a mean of increasing jobs, but he has not shown that any money , stimulus money in particular, has been spent on finding the solution of these issues (including the stoppage of oil spill in accident) which are important to the well being of Americans.

Posted by: ypcchiu | May 24, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

This oil spill situation is no different than a terrorist attack. Instead of the Twin Towers it is the destruction of the Gulf Coast. Obama's reaction is of a man who is out to lunch and it is akin to how he reacts to everything. He clearly comes across as someone who does not give a s h i t, because he has got no shortage of brains. Ergo when he is so misguided, it is necessary to look else where and it is his indifference. For a guy with so much promise, Obama has turned into a train wreck.

Posted by: marcom_news | May 24, 2010 9:13 PM | Report abuse

O'BlahBlah is in charge of everything.
If you don't think so, just ask the TelePrompter !!!

Posted by: thgirbla | May 24, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

It's not time yet to blame the Feds for not taking over the cleanup. I'm not that familiar with the Oil Pollution Control Act, but I have done plenty of site remediations under RCRA, etc.

The Responsible Party (BP) is in charge of site remediation and cleanup with oversight from the lead agency (EPA). Removal actions are slightly different, but in general the RP is in charge unless they prove themselves so incompetent that the EPA has to take over. The EPA taking over in this case would be roughly analogous to the federal government nationalizing the banks during the bank crisis; it isn't a straightforward process.

Most Republicans should be firmly on the side of BP keeping control of the cleanup and all remarks about the "Obama administration's incompetence" are out of place.

This is completely different from Katrina, where there is no responsible party and the local, state and federal governments are the ones in charge. So Bush was incompentent; Obama is not (yet).

Posted by: winston12 | May 24, 2010 9:20 PM | Report abuse

Jendal is governor of La now? Did they impeach Jindal?

I've seen private companies with responsibility to get things done to help the public in my dealings with utilities on roadway construction projects.

I don't know if BP is doing the same thing, but those private utility companies know how to play the system like a fiddle. They know that the governmental entity (typically state, sometimes town) needs the roadway job done, but can't do it unless they move or modify their poles or utility lines.

The utilities typically delay and lowball for months, and ultimately count on the state taking over and doing much of the work, just so it gets done. They also realize that the state could take them to court to recover the costs of the state having to do the work that they are legally obligated to do, but that the state almost never does. The state fears that if they sue the utility, they will NEVER do anything again, and the condition/relationship will worsen.

BP could really be finagling along the same lines. Hard to tell.

Posted by: steveboyington | May 24, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Goodness there does seem to be a lot of glee in come circles over this disaster.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 24, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

sc 1, *dc 2, yarnover, dc 2, sc 1* (*repeat*)

Posted by: talitha1 | May 24, 2010 9:36 PM | Report abuse

Today's posts have once again shown why, to me, the internet is so popular. Before it, the truly unhinged people could not get their rants published. Editorial staff of newspapers or magazines or the like would read the submittals and go "ewww!". The internet has no filter. It encourages the stupidest, wildest stuff to be posted. Nobody needs to be thoughtful, nobody needs to make any effort at all to convey an actual logical argument. Nobody needs to refine anything they do. Anger, write, click.

It is bad bad bad. Our society will never be the same. Ever.

Posted by: steveboyington | May 24, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Once Obama figures out how to get political cover by blaming Bush for the blow out, he will announce that he's nationalizing the capping and the clean up.

Posted by: logicprevails | May 24, 2010 9:45 PM | Report abuse

My my. We have some interesting visitors today. I hope those who can write grammatical sentences and refrain from all caps might join us again. They do inspire a few thoughts of my own:

I agree in large part with exco but am a little puzzled by the parting comment about small government supporters. There aren't usually many of those here, as we tend to recognize the benefits of government. Exco may have been confused by some of the new posters, or may have (understandably) mistaken the forum, or may be assuming things about posters without foundation.

This leads to my second observation: there have been a lot of posts angry at the Obama administration. Many of these may come from the previously rumored disaffected left, which is mad that he hasn't done enough quickly enough, or don't approve of his priorities in office. I can understand why they would complain that Big Gummint hasn't stepped in fast or hard enough. I am, however, puzzled by those who use this tragedy as fodder for their already existing dislike of the Obama administration. As I understood it one big complaint was that Big Gummint was bad and Obama was leading us into socialism. When the gummint takes over duties given by law to private enterprise, concerning a resource owned by private enterprise, ain't that socialism by their definition?

Finally, I refuse to believe that we can't emphasize green energy and still properly regulate existing energy sources. I note that stimulus money is not really the appropriate source of cleanup and research funding for this disaster; for one thing, it had some pretty specific limitations, and for another it has mostly been allocated.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 24, 2010 9:49 PM | Report abuse

It's obvious the Republican electrons are whizzing today, with forwarded e-mails outlining the current talking points of outrage with the Obama Administration. I'm getting the idea that some people think Obama is really Superman - he could stop this oil leak if he really wanted to, he can turn the country socialist without our even noticing - they're the ones who think he's the Magic Negro! I think the fear of black people extends to investing them with superhuman powers.

Grow up, folks. He's the guy we elected, he's doing his best, he's been dealt a ferociously bad hand and it seems to be getting worse every day. I feel for him, but I'm sooooo glad we have a grownup in charge for a change.

Posted by: Wheezy11 | May 24, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Looks like there's going to be a serious shortage of capital letters soon. I'm gonna squirrel some away along with the bottled water and duct tape and washer fluid and maybe some head cheese.

Posted by: AgAnnie | May 24, 2010 9:53 PM | Report abuse

AgAnnie, don't you remember what happened after the last crisis? You left that headcheese in the tub in the basement till it smelled so bad, and we ended up having to have all the drapes and carpets professionally cleaned to get the smell out? No. Head. Cheese.

Posted by: Wheezy11 | May 24, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Wheezy, you sure about that? Power bars get downright chewy after awhile and there aren't lots of dentists doing filling replacements during lockdowns--unless, I guess, the lockdown starts while you're getting your teeth cleaned.

Posted by: AgAnnie | May 24, 2010 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Not exactly on topic, but the Guardian speculates about what would be the world's biggest hydro power dam.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/may/24/chinese-hydroengineers-propose-tibet-dam

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | May 24, 2010 10:17 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom, thanks for the sanity check. Steveboyington, the crazys are out in full caps for sure. Wheezy, you make some good points also. I've got to stop watching and reading about the leak for a bit, I'm starting to get a bit crazy myself.

Posted by: badsneakers | May 24, 2010 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Now that the blog is off the front page I want to thank the voices of sanity here. My crochet references are my way of coping and laughing a little, even if only at myself.

Dave, that hydro power dam worries me. The environmental and political implications of it seem pretty profound. Thanks for the link because it led me on a search to some interesting sites with maps and photos of that region that were breathtaking.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 24, 2010 11:09 PM | Report abuse

Besides capping the oil leak & leaks, the primary focus should be finding some eco friendly method to remove the oil from the Gulf as soon as possible. WE should have an attitude that this is potentially the worst disaster that modern day Americans will witness in their life time. Why we are not using every means of media presure i.e. Nightline, Larry King etc. possible. We had more media coverage on Haiti, than we do on this event, and the magnitude of this is going to be effecting millions of people.
If the clean up as well as the plugging isn't being persued with the utmost urgency, we are neglecting a tremendous liability. With the Hurricane season fast approaching , the waters of the Gulf and Atlantic already unseasonbly warm, there is a serious potential for a early hurricane event. What we haven't heard about, besides the obvious possibilites of a huricane impact with oil associated with it via coastal inundation. What could be the potential fallout of polluted rain that is a major portion of a hurricane event. What will happen if these chemical dispersements as well as oil manage to become a potential threat to our agricultural basin, that feasibly could be comprimised hundreds of miles inland in generated by a hurricane in a rain event? If people are not addressing this , or if there is no potential risk. Then the media should be dispelling any fears associated with this scenario, or putting some serious focus on what if!

Posted by: graymatter11 | May 24, 2010 11:18 PM | Report abuse

Besides capping the oil leak & leaks, the primary focus should be finding some eco friendly method to remove the oil from the Gulf as soon as possible. WE should have an attitude that this is potentially the worst disaster that modern day Americans will witness in their life time. Why we are not using every means of media presure i.e. Nightline, Larry King etc. possible. We had more media coverage on Haiti, than we do on this event, and the magnitude of this is going to be effecting millions of people.
If the clean up as well as the plugging isn't being persued with the utmost urgency, we are neglecting a tremendous liability. With the Hurricane season fast approaching , the waters of the Gulf and Atlantic already unseasonbly warm, there is a serious potential for a early hurricane event. What we haven't heard about, besides the obvious possibilites of a huricane impact with oil associated with it via coastal inundation. What could be the potential fallout of polluted rain that is a major portion of a hurricane event. What will happen if these chemical dispersements as well as oil manage to become a potential threat to our agricultural basin, that feasibly could be comprimised hundreds of miles inland in generated by a hurricane in a rain event? If people are not addressing this , or if there is no potential risk. Then the media should be dispelling any fears associated with this scenario, or putting some serious focus on what if!

Posted by: graymatter11 | May 24, 2010 11:18 PM | Report abuse

its bushs oil spill!

here, records will show its bushs oil spill.

http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-05-14/its-bushs-oil-spill/?cid=hp:originalslist1

Posted by: huj534op | May 25, 2010 12:22 AM | Report abuse

It's just horrible. We are at the nth degree of irresponsibility for not having a reliable disaster recovery plan tested and approved by so many "official" groups before this catastrophe.

I am trying not to be depressed but it is so hard especially seeing the poor birds covered in oil.

We might as well have been struck by a big meteorite that just keeps exploding.

Joel, do keep up some snippets of humor. It helps a little.

Posted by: Windy3 | May 25, 2010 1:50 AM | Report abuse

Tar-coated shrimp have been reported by fishermen off the Florida Keys.
http://www.naplesnews.com/news/2010/may/24/dry-tortugas-fishing-crew-reports-haul-tar-coated-/

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | May 25, 2010 2:05 AM | Report abuse

I have a headache. ow

Meanwhile I just finished a movie that possibly may have had the worst soundtrack ever. all the worst songs of the eighties. one exception was a Lou Reed song

Posted by: omni3 | May 25, 2010 2:39 AM | Report abuse

So, by conservative BP estimates we are at 150,000 barrels.

Ixtoc was 3 million barrels. the gulf can survive and recuperate.

Worst case estimates, it's already At 3 mil

I forget where I was going with this, like I said my head hurts

Posted by: omni3 | May 25, 2010 3:23 AM | Report abuse

Chernobyl - 24 years on. Kid still born with problems caused by radiation

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/chernobyl--24-years-on-1954969.html

Posted by: rainforest1 | May 25, 2010 3:41 AM | Report abuse

You know what Winston Churchill said about naval tradition. Well, this year they did it without any lube.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/05/24/AR2010052403916.html

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 7:19 AM | Report abuse

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Good morning, friends. How puny does man look before God. How weak and desperate is our situation when we ignore the one we have to deal with, Almighty God. And how does politics serve to answer the circumstances in the Gulf? And why do we need a boogey man? Someone to blame. Isn't that sort of clear? Who owns the well, and who received the money for the contents? Was there any doubt when it worked where the revenue went? I mean seriously, pray tell, was there any doubt?

I'm a dummy, and I'll be the first to admit that, yet I know I am not on that island alone. I have plenty of company, including some that don't know they're on the island.

There's enough blame to go around. All of us share in this mess, and name calling won't work. There should be tears for this mess falling from every eye. And then, prayers, big time. And then, do what needs to be done, using every available resource at hand. The cost is already beyond what we can pay, so money is not a major talking point now.

Have a great day, folks, and love to all.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 25, 2010 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Good Morning Everyone.

First of all, condolences to those Canadian-type people who are mourning the loss of the Montreal Canadiens.

Regarding this oil business, this morning I encountered the phrase "impotent rage," which I think would make an excellent boodle handle.

I have compared this experience to sitting in the waiting room while the doctors are attempting to treat a sick child. But my wife has come up with a better simile.

This is like when you have your car in the shop. They promise you the car in two days, but, doncha know, then the parts don't come in. Then they find that the gasket is leaking so they need to re-order. Then, Big Dan, who is the only fellow who is familiar with that particular type of transflexive valve system, well, he's come down with the shingles real bad. And since the motor is already in pieces you can't exactly go in with a big basket and reclaim it.

By the time your vehicle has been out of commission for two weeks you want to sneak in under cover of darkness and leave something distasteful in the break room refrigerator.

This, I believe, is where we are now.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 25, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

Isn't today the day for the top kill? I hope it works. Immediately would be good.

RD, if you need something distasteful, I can scoop up the poop on the sidewalk we have to avoid when we walk. There seems to be plenty out there this week. Just let me know how much you want and I'll fax it to you.

Posted by: slyness | May 25, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Top kill is scheduled for tomorrow morning.

At least, last I heard.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 25, 2010 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Morning, Slyness. Hope you are well. Perhaps because of the rainy weather there's an abundance of poop in your neighborhood. You think?

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 25, 2010 8:34 AM | Report abuse

RD

Your wife is a very smart lady.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 25, 2010 8:36 AM | Report abuse

RD,
I know your analogy perfectly. About three weeks ago I broke off the inside door handle to my car. After the panic attack from being stuck in car subsided, I learned to roll down the window, open the door from the outside, roll the window back up and then turn off the engine and leave the car. Very cumbersome.

The parts department has gotten in the wrong color door lever twice. This sort of incompetence is unpardonable. My situation is EXACTLY like the gulf oil spill. Except for all the dead wildlife and ruined businesses.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Lord knows I don't know the first thing about drilling for oil, but is it possible to open up another spot so that the oil goes up through that particular hole and divert the one that is causing the problem? I know someone would have thought of this if it is possible, but I would love to know why it wouldn't work? Would it have to be "bombed" for lack of a better word? I know simplistic, and way out of my league.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 25, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Cassandra,
That is the relief well they are drilling. They are about 1/3 of the way done with that. If the 'top-kill' and 'junk shot' don't work, it's at least another month until that one can be completed.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Yello.

It seems "time" is also the enemy here. I do hope the "top-kill" works. I just keep thinking about the damge to the people and the environment.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 25, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, y'all.

Warm muffins, coffee and OJ on the table.

It is rant-free Tuesday at CasaJS. Niece#3 and I are doing a lunch-and-bakefest today. I am psyched. I cannot promise leftovers, but any that exist will be put out on the table later today.

So the Blackhawks will play the Flyers for Lord Stanley's Cup. "Here come the Hawks, the mighty Blackhawks" has been toon-cootied in the minds of all Chicagolanders as we await the opening game.

Posted by: MsJS | May 25, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

sausage buscuits, ham biscuits, and boxes of filled kk doughnuts await for breakfast, along with a pot of proper coffee. enjoy, and a good morning to you all.

Posted by: -jack- | May 25, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

MsJS and Jack, you are spoiling us. Thanks!

I dunno about the rainy weather and poop, Cassandra. It just seems like there are lots of inconsiderate folks walking their dogs and not cleaning up. It must partly be the warm weather, because I never saw anything when it was cold. We haven't had a downpour that would wash the stuff away, either.

Posted by: slyness | May 25, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

as a compatriot in the hawks' camp, ms js, at least *we* know who may very well prevail.

Posted by: -jack- | May 25, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

I hate to complain in the face of this wonderful spread, but, jack, did you happen to pick up any glazed?

Posted by: -bia- | May 25, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

of course. there are a couple of dozen under the lemon filled, and also a dozen plain cake dunkin doughnuts for purists like me. nothing like a dunkin dount. 'cause it has a handle.

Posted by: -jack- | May 25, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Jack, *we* do indeed.

*aiming high pressure hose towards all poop-infested sidewalks and cranking up to level 12*

Posted by: MsJS | May 25, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Slyness

We've had the downpours and it's looking like more. And the weather is slightly cool. Of course, it does warm during the course of the day, but it is fickle.

One other thing, why are the Repulicans killing their candidate, Tim D'Annunizo? Not that I want to vote for this person. My understanding is that he had a political rally at a gunstore somewhere here in North Carolina. The only question I would have asked is who are you going to shoot? Would you believe that he had a plane fly over where I live here in Hamlet with his banner on election day? This guy is serious, but then the news piece says at one time he claimed to be the messiah. F-R-I-G-H-T-E-N-I-N-G!!!!!

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 25, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Might I suggest the collection of the canine feces for the ritual burning on the doorstep of BP headquarters.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

D'Annunciation is a nutcase even by teabagger standards.

"In Hoke County divorce records, his wife said in 1995 that D'Annunzio had claimed to be the Messiah, had traveled to New Jersey to raise his stepfather from the dead, believed God would drop a 1,000-mile high pyramid as the New Jerusalem on Greenland and found the Ark of the Covenant in Arizona. A doctor's evaluation the following month said D'Annunzio used marijuana almost daily, had been living with another woman for several months, had once been in drug treatment for heroin dependence and was jailed a couple times as a teenager."

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100524/ap_on_el_ho/us_gop_tea_party

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

Tonight on Glee: Gaga!

Posted by: ScienceTim | May 25, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Not a Gaga fan, alas.

Perhaps I should sue. Or be flattered. Or get an H1N7,8,9 deja flu shot. Or, yanno, great mimes drink alike:

"Experts Propose Plugging Oil Leak with BP Executives

Submerging Execs Could Be 'Win-Win'

WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report) – At a conference of oil leak experts in Washington today, attendees proposed plugging the massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico with executives of BP, the company responsible for the catastrophic spill.

“We’ve tried containment domes, rubber tires, and even golf balls,” said William Cathermeyer of the National Oil Leakage Institute, a leading consultancy in the field of oil leaks. “Now it’s time to shove some BP executives down there and hope for the best.”

Submerging the oil company executives thousands of feet below the ocean’s surface could be a “win-win” situation, Mr. Cathermeyer said.

“Best-case scenario, they plug the leak,” he said. “And at the very least, they’ll shut the [expletive] up.”

But even as the oil leak experts proposed their unorthodox solution, environmental expert Marilyn Sufranski warned of the possible negative consequences of plugging the oil leak with BP executives.

“The Gulf of Mexico is slimy enough already,” she said.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 25, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse

There is also a Kiss medley tonight just to prove that outrageous costumes are not a new invention.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Saluting the dawn
On tall poles where many go
To become top dog.

-Ensign Wilbrodog-

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | May 25, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

MsJS, I was going to ask you the name of the song they play when the Blackhawks score, but I played Meet Mr. Google and found it for myself (Chelsea Dagger by the Fratellis). Catchy tune that.

*faxing condolences to Yoki, shriek, all other Canadian boodlers and anyone else cheering for the Habs*

Posted by: Raysmom | May 25, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Condolences from moi aussi regarding the Habs. I got home too late (entirely too late) from a meeting of the firm I'm with to watch the game. The meeting was very, very fruitful, but in the last 4 hours after the A/C was turned off, it became a little difficult to keep focused.

But the Habs can still be proud, in spite of their disappointment.

Posted by: -ftb- | May 25, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Morning all...

Haven't had time to backBoodle, but was anyone else as disgusted as I to see "Today" had the friggin' White House party crashers (I won't dignify them by name) on this morning? I mean, they've been shown to be serial liars and all-around frauds, so who friggin' CARES what they have to say about getting stopped near the latest WH party?? To make matters worse, I was on a treadmill when I saw that -- almost lost the breakfast I hadn't eaten yet... *SIGHHHHHHHHHH*

*off-to-a-couple-of-public-meetings-down-in-'Mudge's-neck-of-the-woods-(no-wait-I-meant-neck-of-the-bay) Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | May 25, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Yes, Chelsea Dagger has become a fixture at the United Center.

One line of the lyrics got changed to:
"Give me gear, thank you dear, bring your goalie over here, let us score on him just for the hell of it."

Or something like that.

Posted by: MsJS | May 25, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Late good morning to all.

I also extend condolences to Habs fans. I'd do so en francais but I'm terribly rusty these days.

If I weren't so convinced that Rand Paul and Tim D'Annunzio were doing their best to help the GOP implode I would suggest they might make excellent top feed fodder.
Perhaps there will be enough BP execs and we can allow the teabaggies to complete their winding way to defeat.

I'm going with RD_P's first analogy that sitting out the oil spill updates is like waiting for news of a child who's in the operating room. Mrs.RD's sick car comparison hits a little close to home here. Our eldest wheels are *still* sitting at the repair shop, most likely spread on a greasy blanket on the concrete floor.

Nice to hear Wilbrodog this morning. Give a pat from me.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

Was thinking about how nature has her own way of recovering from ecological disasters and damage, and not just the UN/IAEA/WHO assesesment of the effects of the Chernobyl accident and the unexpected rate of recovery in much of the surrounding countryside.

You know, there is much evidence for global effects from another catastophic event in the Gulf of Mexico -- one 65 million years ago. The so-called KT event, where a large meteor may have impacted the Earth with shattering devistation, and results spread worldwide. Theories suggest that this disaster ended the global reign of the dinosaurs, and left the Earth open for the rise of the mammals. And us as the pinnacle - or the low point, depending on your point of view - of life on Earth.

So all of this life and biomass - transformed over conditions under the ground for tens of millions of years - is now gushing back out of the Gulf floor, possibly some of it having been put there by that event 65 million years ago.

We need to take care of this world, lest it take care of us. [Let's hope that does not come as a form of pest control]

It is unclear to me as to how I'm responsible for the tragic events on and under the Deepwater Horizon rig, but I'm willing to do something about stopping the problems and mitigating the effects.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | May 25, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

What so many of these proposals to plug the BP spill (Rush Limbaugh, Rand Paul, politicians, oil execs) fail to consider is that the catastrophe that started it all was caused by a pressurized gas bubble.

Posted by: kguy1 | May 25, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse

MsJs doesn't like this guy, but I do: http://views.washingtonpost.com/leadership/panelists/2010/05/the-accidental-admiral.html?hpid=smartliving

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 25, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

It looks as though Rand Paul might as well start looking for a place to live in Washington, come January. He seems wildly popular in Kentucky, never mind that it's a poor state that will benefit from universal health care.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | May 25, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

May the Force be With You

Grab your towel and put on your tap shoes

Posted by: omni3 | May 25, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

You know I was shattered at the result last night, since I have never before been rendered speechless :-).

Well, the boys did in fact do us proud, just to make it to the EC final. I shall now be cheering for the Blackhawks.

This cracked me up. http://www.theonion.com/articles/blackhawks-attempt-to-find-out-why-shark-on-san-jo,17488/

Posted by: Yoki | May 25, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

I saw The Onion article and laughed too, Yoki.

Most team mascots don't have much connection to the sport. For example bears don't play any major professional sport that I'm aware of, but we have the Chicago Bears (football) and Boston Bruins (hockey). Heck, in TWC we've even got underage bears playing baseball.

Mudge, it's rant-free Tuesday here at CasaJS so I'll just smile and hope you are feeling much better.

Posted by: MsJS | May 25, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Regarding the White House party crashers on the Today Show, Scotty, I haven't watched Today since they hired the Bush twin (I forget which one) as a correspondent. A girl has to have some principles you know, and that's was where I drew the line. I have since learned that *all* morning TV shows are awful, just in slightly different ways. Didn't they used to be about news, not celebrities?

Posted by: badsneakers | May 25, 2010 11:48 AM | Report abuse

I'm with badsneakers on the morning shows being universally devoted to blather.

Dave, is Kentucky really serious about Rand Paul? I'll take your word for it, but I sure as heck don't understand it.

Regarding team mascots, I've never understood choosing an insect to carry the ball, although I suppose the ability to fly over a goalpost or above a hoop would be advantageous. And there is that stinger.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Yep, Sneaks -- and that's what the mute button is for. I just open up the air waves for the weather and local "news" such as it may be.

Well, stand back for two absolutely *wonderful* tidbits from my life this morning. As I was simultaneously crafting an email and IMing with our firm's office manager, I received an email from my African "sister-in-law" and in the subject line was "NEWS ...". Well, *of course* the news was that she's expecting again and even though her husband called me yesterday, he didn't tell me the news. She and I had a great laugh over that when I called her with long reaching congratulatory hugs. She's due in January. It's very exciting for everyone, with the potential exception of her 2 1/2 year old boy, who is proudly fulfilling every single one of the job descriptions of that age. At least he'll be 3 when the baby arrives, but I suspect the attention shift is gonna be a bit of a problem for him.

The other news is that a novel written by the husband of a good friend of mine was just reviewed (glowingly) by the NYT. The name of the book is "Tech Transfer" and the author is Daniel Greenberg. He's local here, and is a great guy. I told his wife just now that indeed I will get the book and I expect him to inscribe it.

Just an all around good day so far for the observer and indirect beneficiary of great things.

Cya later.

Posted by: -ftb- | May 25, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

talitha,
I have no idea what's going on in Kentucky. Far more people voted in the Democratic than the Republican primary, but what few polls are available seem to show Paul thumping the Democratic nominee. Could it be a situation where people retain their lifetime party registration while never voting for its nominees in the general election?
http://results.enr.clarityelections.com/KY/15261/25907/en/summary.html

I suppose Paul's star aura might fade, but he's a celebrity in a way that his Democratic opponent can't match.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | May 25, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Licking my wounds also over here. Not only hockey wounds but gardening wounds as well. I have a history of hectic gardening on Victoria Day weekends but this last one was the Mother of Them All. Not to be repeated anytime soon, I hope.
The heatwave is on, it's almost 31C/87F right now downtown. The little plants put in the ground yesterday will need watering soon.

Good for the Blackhawks, I never liked the Sharks anyway. But I'm tempted to cheer for Philadelphia now that I know some of the players. Local boy Denis Savard doesn't play for the Hawks anymore, right? These West Conference team we see once a year are pretty hard to get to know.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | May 25, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

This part of the Rand Paul phenomenon is the "briar patch" part. Palin gets this concept. Say things that get more and more people to say you are an idiot. Every time someone else calls you an idiot, you get two more followers. So it goes.

Posted by: steveboyington | May 25, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

MsJS, you not only have the Bears and the Bruins, you also have the Cubs. The three bears.

talitha, use of insect names as mascots goes way, way back. Among the first half dozen ships used by the early Continental Navy were the Hornet and the Wasp, and there was even a cargo ship called the Ant in use back then. I'm as mystified as you as to the appeal, but the fact remains, it has been around a long time.

Wasp and Hornet are very venerable names in the U.S. Navy, with two famous aircraft carriers in WWII with those names. The Brits have had a dozen ships named HMS Mosquito and the Navy PT Boats of WWII were called the Mosquito fleet, a nickname coined by Walt Disney himself, who drew their squadron symbols, often using bees, wasps, hornets and mosquitos. Likewise, the Russians (Soviets) named entire classes of fast patrol boats, PTs and some missle boats after insects.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 25, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Condolences to you Habs fans.

FWIW, the only hockey jersey I've ever worn was a Blackhawks, circa '77 or so. Worn when I had season's worth of delusion of hockey adequacy, and for some years subsequently for sheer funkiness (The early Caps jerseys were spectacularly garish, and not my style anyway)

bc

Posted by: -bc- | May 25, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Dave. I think the "celebripolitician" is sadly becoming the norm.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

ftb, mute button location needs to be relearned as we got Fios TV a few days ago. I'm happy with it so far, except for all this new memorization stuff.

A very warm day here, might just succumb to the hammock for a nap...

Posted by: badsneakers | May 25, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

O ye of little faith. Palin, too, made a big media splash when she first got nominated, and had a month in the sun. Then look what happened. Relax. It's a long time until November.

I have a theory that what is going to kill Rand Paul in November is very unseen, very underground lack of support from his own party apparatchiks. The old line GOP party people don't know what to do with him, don't know what to make of him, and have no reason to break their necks supporting him. He'll never see it coming, but I think they are gonna sit on their hands on election day. A lot of them are going to see they are better off with him loosing than winning. The old line GOP is slowly beginning to realize they have to kill the Tea Party before it kills them. And of course they can't seen doing it. But kill it they must. Fortunately, it's easy to do without leaving fingerprints. Stay home.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 25, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

New piece from Joel & Steve Mufson re. the "Top Kill" (don't call them Maverick and Goose).

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/05/25/AR2010052502297.html?hpid=topnews

bc

Posted by: -bc- | May 25, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

And thanks to Mudge. Entomological names for warships and planes are certainly apropos. Sports and war share so many metaphors that names and mascots make complete sense.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Here's a bit of a surprise:

Tina Fey to receive Kennedy Center's Mark Twain Prize for American Humor

By Jacqueline Trescott
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, May 25, 2010; 11:30 AM

Tina Fey can dust off another place on her trophy shelf. The Kennedy Center is announcing Tuesday that the comedian will receive this year's Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.

And before anyone asks, let's settle the question of honoring someone who's a mere 40 years old. "It does change the paradigm a bit," said Mark Krantz, co-executive producer of the Twain salute. Fey is the youngest recipient in the award's 13 years. "A lot of people felt it was a lifetime achievement award for an old person. It never has been. It is a prize, really, about somebody's depth and talent."

Fey's response to being chosen illustrates why audiences love this groundbreaking writer and actress. She said: "I assume Betty White was disqualified for steroid use."

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 25, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Hey! I resemble those remarks!

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

a gallon of recular unleaded was priced around 2.80 per gallon two weeks ago. it has dropped at least a dime per gallon. contextuall, it doesn't make sense, as the holiday iq upon us. i am hard pressed to recall such a price drop before holiday.

Posted by: -jack- | May 25, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

As I understand the top kill procedure, the mud has to be a greater volume and pressure than the oil. 40 barrels per minute is about 57,000 barrels per day. This at least gives us some upper bound on what BP thinks is the actual flow rate.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

http://www.salon.com/entertainment/comics/this_modern_world/2010/05/25/this_modern_world

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 25, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

yello, Bob-S and I resemble those remarks as well, though my stinger has been blunted as the years passed by. ;)

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

I think we need Conan O'Brien to join the Boodle. Not for any particular reason today. Just in general.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 25, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

The suggestion has merit, but don't you think he'd make some of us look bad? I'd have to lose my delusion that I'm quick, or smart, or even just goofy. And it is my most favouritest delusion ever.

Posted by: Yoki | May 25, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Thanks bc. I had read that the environmental recovery rate at Chernobyl exceeded expectations. If 35 species a day go extinct, we seem to be doing a good job helping Earth to shake us off like an itchy plaid coat.

Posted by: LostInThought | May 25, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Talitha, the New Orleans Hornets, formerly the Charlotte Hornets, were so named because of a remark of General Cornwallis when he was in the area, circa 1780. The locals (my ancestors among them) so harried his forces that he called the region a hornet's nest of rebellion. A hornet's nest is in the center of the City of Charlotte's seal.

Posted by: slyness | May 25, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

That's a good point yello.

The problem, though, is that BP is attempting to match the pressure below the BOP, while the flow of oil from the leak is a function of the oil to gas ratio, as well as how much of the flow is being blocked by the BOP.

None of these things, and especially not the degree of constriction from the BOP, are well known.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 25, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Aw, Yoki, I'd take yer quickness, smartness and just plain ol' goofiness over CO'B *anytime*! You Rawk!

Posted by: -ftb- | May 25, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Awww, I'm blushing, ftb. Fanx.

P.S. So do you!

Posted by: Yoki | May 25, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

I am unsure of the sort of mud they intend to pump in there that won't just flow out the riser as fast as it goes in. Leads me to think the junk shot gives them worries it will clog up the small diameter hoses they will be using. There are many complications.

I designed in my head a mechanism for a surgical penetration of the BOPs but am pretty sure it would take weeks to assemble and deploy. A method to grab the opposite side of the BOP merely to hold it in place would be needed. Plus lots of huge rubber seals at the point of entrance. Plus the ability to drill though numerous layers of casing. Without clogging with metal shavings. I fear there is no such machine.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 25, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Yuns both rawk. And Conan can't cook.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 25, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

On a side note, LiT, I seem to recall that while some species go extinct every day, I think there who-knows-how-many we haven't identified yet, and if Darwin is to be believed (and I do) new ones evoloving all the time.

I remember a recent story about 'new' species of roaches found in NYC apartment buildings over the past couple of years.

I'm pretty sure life will adapt to the messes humans make on this planet, even if we don't. From a cosmic perspective, that might mean everything, or it may less than a shooting star in the night sky on a backwater planet circling a nondescript yellow sun about 2/3 of the way from the center of a average spiral galaxy in a galactic cluster of a few dozen galaxies, which is part of a local supercluster of over 100 similar galactic clusters, and part of an observeable cosmic structure of millions of galactic superclusters.

(Presumably, there's a Tiki Bar out there somewhere)

bc

Posted by: -bc- | May 25, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Maybe I can't cook either - I forgot to soak the salt off the corned beef. OMG it's salty.

Here is BP getting the BOPs ready for the procedure:
http://bp.concerts.com/gom/rovs_24052010.htm

There are specialty rheological fluids for vaguely similar circumstances. Extremely high viscosity, yet pumpable. Making them weigh 18 lbs. per gallon is another story, I think.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 25, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Love the story behind the Hornets' name, slyness. Some of my kin were in that area when Cornwallis was swatting at rebels. They went south into the Georgia mountains some years later.

I wonder how Georgia Tech came to choose the yellowjacket as a mascot, something I should know since my high school adopted it from them. yello, do you know?

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

This article answers almost every question I have had up to now.
http://www.upstreamonline.com/live/article215908.ece

Re. outrage: I am still outraged at the fast and loose decisions that led up to this debacle. It is another matter to believe BP will screw it up worse than already, although it remains a distinct possibility.

Red Adair used to accept well fire contracts with one ironclad provision: the engineer who allowed the blowout to occur must leave the jobsite. He never wavered on this provision, and almost always got his demand.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 25, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

The first football teams wore yellow jackets. Adoption of the insect as a mascot was an outgrowth of that.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

On kit, sorta...wondering who is in charge brings up the question of whether we will ever know the name of the person who comes up with the solution. Not a corporation or a governmental agency, but an actual person. The one who has been looking through bloodshot eyes, crunching numbers, mapping out guesstimate weights and measures and predicted outcomes. Will s/he even be a footnote in the history books?

Posted by: LostInThought | May 25, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Tnx, yello. I often forget when I'm chatting that I have a search engine at my fingertips.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Given all the collaboration on this effort, there may not be a single person to credit. If there is any single solution it may be the result of a group effort: x offers Idea, y offers Idea+1, z adds Suggestion, etc. to reach the final product.

Whoever she, he or they are, and whether or not there is public credit, I bet everyone in the industry (including academics) will know.

Posted by: Ivansmom | May 25, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

I hope so. We're so interested in who caused the problem...we want names, and we want heads to roll...but we're not so interested in exactly who solves the problem, let alone giving them a standing ovation.

Posted by: LostInThought | May 25, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

The Top Kill method is not a new one but one that has been used on land before.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 25, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Another article for which Joel has partial authorship:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/05/25/AR2010052502297.html?hpid=topnews

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 25, 2010 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Bog power outage last night in Philly during the game. All you could hear was cars racing out of affected sports bars and sirens as police raced to the boulevard intersections with dysfunctional lights. I finally went to bed to be awakened about an hour later when the ceiling fan came on. The outage lasted about 3 hours.

Representatives of 3 different tech departments (incl. me) have been working on an interface issue the vendor was denying causing. After a day of work, we finally found the reason, and yes, vendor error. Their explanations went from very general to more specific, denying error until even they couldn't do it with a straight face. So they admitted it and blamed us in the next sentence, basically saying if we'd followed best practices we would have found it sooner.

We insisted on a call, they finally admitted culpability, laying it all on their team member not on the call. Why do I think this is how BP will go?

Posted by: -dbG- | May 25, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps the Boodle is already aware of this historic event (I've been sick)-

http://www.themorningstarr.co.uk/2010/05/23/bertoletti-wins-at-world-poutine-eating-championship/

I found especially heartwarming the description of the champ's plan for the disposition of his winnings: "Bertoletti received $750 in prize money and a snazzy trophy, when asked what he planned on spending his winnings on the world class athlete replied that he’d be putting the money back into the Canadian economy by spending the night in a bar, pissing his winnings up against a wall."

Posted by: kguy1 | May 25, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Scotty, the morning shows are terrible. They found that if they had show biz folks on with a tale or two, they would have bigger audience. But everything gets old, and that has seen it better day, if the word "better" can be used in that sentence. I laughed when I read your comment.

It seems Tina Frey is a very accomplished woman in the world of television and comedy. I think she is one of those people that is funny without trying real hard, at least she makes it look that way.

If Conan were part of the Achenblog, he would call me an idiot, and move on to the next person. I have no illusions otherwise. But we would all probably end up having a good laugh, so that would take the bite away.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 25, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Good Morning America's Sam Champion went down to the oil spill in his piece today. That was interesting. The thing that struck me was the globs of oil where they used that chemical to desperse the oil. And he said the smell was just awful. He had to be washed down after coming back up. It's a mess any way one looks at it.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 25, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Some feedback from the Oil Drum:

///From the WaPo today:

The most critical moment in the oil spill crisis in the Gulf of Mexico is at hand, as BP engineers armed with 50,000 pounds of dense mud and a fleet of robotic submarines are poised to attempt a "top kill" maneuver to plug the leaking well a mile below the surface. (end WaPo quote)

50,000 pounds ≈ 22 tonnes ≈ 11 cubic meters? That's all?///

And a response to that:

///BP said 50,000 barrels on three vessels. Can't believe the nimrods that write these articles. Next thing you know they will report the ocean as 5000 cubic feet deep.///

Kinda like using light-years as a unit of time.

At 42 gallons per barrel and a density of 100 pounds per cubic foot, that would be about 28 million pounds. Only off by a factor of 500.

It sounds like a mighty large number but if they are pumping at 40 (some places say 50) barrels per minute, that gives them about 20 hours of capacity. Let's hope that's all it takes to fill the well.


Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, I hope you are feeling better. And with that I will say good night.

Posted by: cmyth4u | May 25, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Thank you Cassandra, I'm doing fine. Have a good night.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | May 25, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

By my estimate, it's going to take 25,000 pounds of drilling mud just to fill the 3" hose down to the bottom of the ocean floor.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Trolls, and idiots, and drive-bys, Oh my!!

Almost makes me miss Linda Loo.

Posted by: Don_from_I-270 | May 25, 2010 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Betelgeuse!

Posted by: LostInThought | May 25, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Please.

Posted by: -dbG- | May 25, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse

If the hose has a 3 inch diameter than a mile of the stuff would be about 46 barrels. Water of that volume would be about 350 pounds, so I can buy yello's value for mixed mud. But here's the thing. Is the mud being shipped out completely mixed with water already, or is it being mixed in with the water at the site?

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 25, 2010 5:29 PM | Report abuse

You don't want to mess around with things you don't understand, Don!

Posted by: Yoki | May 25, 2010 5:29 PM | Report abuse

I meant water is about 350 pounds per barrel.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 25, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

The 'pounds' has been changed to 'barrels'. Somebody must have tipped Joel off.

***Glancing around furtively and whistling tunelessly***

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 5:41 PM | Report abuse

The error (gal vs. barrel) is regrettable but was inevitable. The point is, BP has a large and reasonable amount of mud there. Mud offshore is routinely both shipped mixed and also mixed on rigs / ships.

On a different topic, wonder what W. is doing these days.

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 25, 2010 5:50 PM | Report abuse

I don't imagine they have to fill the well. They just have to pump enough mud/cement/whatever into the well to overcome the force that's pushing oil & gas out. In theory, a modest amount of superdensium would suffice. Maybe if the mud was composed mostly of powdered iridium & osmium, along with whatever binder was needed for necessary flow characteristics? That'd make some good heavy stuff! Of course, it'd be pretty gosh-darned expensive. I'm not sure where you'd lay your hands on several cubic meters of iridium & osmium. And there are other complications.

Posted by: Bob-S | May 25, 2010 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Hahaha!

Posted by: Bob-S | May 25, 2010 5:53 PM | Report abuse

I don't usually post obits, but Martin Gardner died.
http://www.bostonherald.com/business/media/view.bg?articleid=1256771

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 25, 2010 6:05 PM | Report abuse

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nISaLyarfJA

Posted by: Jumper1 | May 25, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

OK, the bakefest has yielded:
- 7-layer bars
- iced orange cookies
- blueberry muffins
- chocolate cookies

Niece#3 had to take half home or be banished forever, but the rest are on the table, along with cold milk and lemonade.

I read Mr. A's articles before coming to the boodle. I read some of the comments and wondered when/if WaPo is going to implement its tiered commenting system.

Posted by: MsJS | May 25, 2010 6:17 PM | Report abuse

MsJS that sounds so good, it is hot here today, some freshed baked goodies and a cool lemonade on the garden swing sound delightful.

FYI - virtual pool party - air temp about 87, pool temp 80.

There is something that has been bothering me for days and perhaps I missed this explanation but wouldn't BP have a good idea of expected flow rates when they discovered the well, designed the piping to handle said flow rate. One of my many jobs was in a firm that made connections for oil rigs, nuclear plants, petrochemical plants, knowing the pressure/flow rates was pretty important, to say the least. Not to mention I vaguely remember reading the weekly drill rig count and was sure they generally listed the barrels produced by the rigs. Of course my memory is sketchy so you never know - Jumper?

Posted by: dmd3 | May 25, 2010 6:32 PM | Report abuse

He was dead when I linked to the WaPo obit two days ago.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/postmortem/2010/05/martin-gardner.html

I remember when the Mathematical Games column was about the only part of Scientific American I could understand more than five paragraphs of.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Well I'm glad the obit didn't run before he died. That would be tacky.

Off to burgers on the grill. I'm supposed to bring dessert. Fresh blackberry shortcake.

Posted by: MsJS | May 25, 2010 6:39 PM | Report abuse

MsJS,
Hey! I resemble that remark!

Posted by: PopSocket | May 25, 2010 7:02 PM | Report abuse

Jumper, thank you for the puzzle ball video
a thousand times! I make fiber geodesic objects and toys frequently. (Moebius objects, too.) That video is a fast-motion-with-music evocation of my feelings when I assemble them.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Today's mis-used punctuation mark - the hyphen:

http://topics.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/05/25/hyphen-trouble/

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, I knew I should have left those hyphens out-of-there.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 7:23 PM | Report abuse

talitha, your hyphens were used correctly. My old boss made us hyphenate ANY words used together as a modifier, so we wrote about mutual-fund managers and real-estate agents. I think that went a little too far, but I didn't have my own PBS show for 30 years.

On a different note, here's some amazing video of the Atlantis rocket booster falling to earth...

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/video/2010/05/25/VI2010052504129.html?hpid=artslot

Posted by: -TBG- | May 25, 2010 7:29 PM | Report abuse

And the site of the 2014 Super Bowl will be
http://www.nfl.com/news/story?id=09000d5d8184fc83&template=with-video-with-comments&confirm=true

Pack mittens.

Posted by: MsJS | May 25, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

I hope you Twittering folks are following @BPGlobalPR. Hilarious spoof. Even selling t-shirts for gulf-cleanup charity...

http://www.streetgiant.bigcartel.com/product/bp-cares

Posted by: -TBG- | May 25, 2010 7:49 PM | Report abuse

We need a good, cold, breath-showing Superbowl venue again. Good for them!

Did you notice the headline link on the side of that article?

"McDaniels tries to squash Broncos QB trade rumors"

Isn't the word "quash?" Or maybe he's fixing them some zucchini.

Posted by: -TBG- | May 25, 2010 7:52 PM | Report abuse

Hyphens are pesky little critters, aren't they? I was using a word-clutch modifer there and the hyphens seemed to smooth the flow.

Speaking of football, I don't suppose there are any N.Y. Giants fans among the boodlers? Mr.Tal is rabidly devoted to them.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 8:29 PM | Report abuse

In case you missed the MIlbank piece on the web suggestions the GOP is looking for to cut spending and actually have something to be FOR, etc., it is a doozy.

Seems that there are a few wiseacres online, with heartfelt suggestions for our leaders in red. This one made me spray the monitor with what I had been drinking.

"But Republicans might want to take a hard look at the suggestion that "we need to reframe the discussion" about the BP oil spill to counteract the "environmental whackos" worried about wildlife. Republicans, this person proposed, should argue that "BP is creating a new race of faster dolphins. These fish are unable to compete against the fish of other countries, but now their increased lubrication will allow them to fly through the water. Faster fish = good."

That poster should win some type of prize.

Posted by: steveboyington | May 25, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

YAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYY!!! Homey computer be operational.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | May 25, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Anyone remember the old Battlestar Galactica, in the late 1970s? Apparently, one of the characters has fallen on hard times. Once a swashbuckling pilot, but now a washed-up DWI machine and budding horticulturalist of the illegal sort. The picture and the name are too funny. He has really let himself go... and now has been arrested in New Hampshire.

http://www.wmur.com/news/23675821/detail.html

Posted by: steveboyington | May 25, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

I'm glad they caught that silly lbs/bbl glitch. I guess this is one advantage to an online presence - you get a bevy of free proofreaders and fact checkers.

talitha - those things you make intrigue me!

I make little wooden boxes. Which are little. And, um, made of wood.

But some of them smell real nice.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 25, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Yep, steveboyington, I remember the classic BG - right down to the original Ceylons. Who, I believe, found work afterwards recording informational messages for the shuttle trains at the Atlanta airport.

http://www.gregburrus.com/fb/Atlanta_shuttle_robot_voice.mp3

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 25, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

You know what, fancies? You don't need an appointment at SuperCuts! They loooove walk-ins.

Just sayin'.

Posted by: -TBG- | May 25, 2010 9:22 PM | Report abuse

Who makes an appointment to buy steaks, chicken breasts and pork chops?

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | May 25, 2010 9:25 PM | Report abuse

RD_P, you asked! Any number of geometric shapes (squares, triangles, hexagons, octogons, etc.) can be formed using crochet or leather edged with embroidery and then joined to form simple spheres. They might be dodecahedronal or any other combination.

Depending upon fiber content and size they become a child's ball or simply an object.
I use fairly unconventional materials. I've even used fur and punched metal. They can be pretty trippy but are non-lethal toss-toys for all ages! The moebius pieces are generally wearables and are knit or crocheted or both, all kinds of fiber content.

When you get a chance tell me about your boxes. I collect wooden boxes to hold all my tools and gewgaws and treasures, so I'm intrigued. And I love aromatic woods. My dad was a wood carver, and my sister carves marionettes.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse

talitha - those sound wonderful.

The boxes I make are usually of oak and mahogany, with occasional accents of exotic hardwoods (like, well, Padouk). They are mostly hand made, although in the past few years I have used a disk sander to help with the shaping.

I am always amazed at how many creative people we have in the boodle.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | May 25, 2010 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Lucky you TBG, you have hair to cut.

It's still stiffling hot here tonight but I'm heading for winter tomorrow at the crack of dawn. At least I get to keep my shoes on, it's a domestic voyage.
I'm so due for some time time off it's not funny anymore.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | May 25, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Creative in so many ways. I feel priviledged every day that I've been accepted here. Now if I could just master my spelling and punctuation. ;]

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

SCC: privileged
See?

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 10:02 PM | Report abuse

RD, if you can find any, try apple wood. It has a very fine grain and a golden color. I made a miniature chest of drawers from some that I cut in thin "planks" from a small log. I turned, on a miniature lathe, knobs of walnut for the drawers. It's one of my favorite pices.

Posted by: Manon1 | May 25, 2010 10:16 PM | Report abuse

pieces!

Posted by: Manon1 | May 25, 2010 10:20 PM | Report abuse

Kiss sang 'Beth' which was the song that the title character of 'I Love You, Beth Cooper' was named after and was played by Hayden Panettiere who is in Heroes with Zachary Quinto who was Spock after Leonard Nimoyw Spock who was first officer to Kirk played by William Shatner who was in a Boston Legal episode with Jane Lynch.

That is your six degrees of Glee.

Posted by: yellojkt | May 25, 2010 10:32 PM | Report abuse

RD, I meant to mention that my woodcarver sister's husband makes hand-turned wooden boxes, bowls and vases. He often uses burls from various hardwoods. Have you ever done any lathe work?

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

New kit.

Posted by: talitha1 | May 25, 2010 11:22 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if the NFL chose the new NYG/Jets stadium as the site of the 2014 Super Bowl just to cheese D. Snyder off. I believe Snyder tried for years to have the SB held at Fed Ex Field in Landover (formerly Raljon), MD.

Given the situation, I think they'll have a regular season game on the Moon before they have a SB game at The Mailbox.

'A containment dome, 50,000 pounds of mud and deep-sea robots' does sound like the punch like to a joke, or a "Would you believe..." line from "Get Smart."

And I hope the Top Splat works - really.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | May 25, 2010 11:31 PM | Report abuse

Unlike the previous Gov of Louisiana and Mayor of N.O. during Katrina, Jendal knows exactly what to to and is doing as much as he can. He has requested what he needs from the Fed but they are to busy blaming BP and 'studying' the situation. Today's press conf. with Salizar and Napolitano really did shed light on how totally inept and political this Administration is in handling the disaster. To top it off Durbin made a totally useless appearance further confirming how excruciating the Lib Dem political hacks are and an embarrassment. Jendal really was the only credible presence on the scene.
Posted by: FraudObama
=========================================================
Has Jindahl declared an emergency and mobilize the National Guard in his state? Can the islands/reef be built with available equipment or is it lip service? A president being on scene only gums up the works with his security detail, true of Dubya during Katrina and Obama now.

Posted by: jameschirico | May 26, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

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