As this long playing tragedy plays itself out in the Gulf, I suppose I am as frustrated by the information-free response of BP as anyone else. It may be that I was looking at things from a different perspective when my corporation ran a fully laden tanker onto the rocks, but they way things seem to be playing out thus far look more like Katrina, and less like the Valdez to me. Exxon, rightly or wrongly, wanted to set fire to the crude early on, to get as much of it off the water as possible. There were also discussions and limitations on the amount of chemical sprayed. For better or worse,Exxon did not always get its way in how the spill was to be handled.
Now, both the President and the Coast Guard were saying that the mud pumping was going smoothly, when in fact eighteen hours went by with no pumping at all. Perhaps there was a good reason for this, perhaps it's an ominous sign-I really don't know. When did BP get the right to control, or at least choke off, all the information being released? As a lifetime Democrat it pains me to see Obama looking as ill-informed and clueless our old buddy 'W'.
Is this some unintended consequence of rolling all of our emergency response into one giant Homeland Security ball? I get the distinct feeling that everyone involved is unsure of their function. Somewhere in the hierarchy, there seem to be some missing pieces. I don't think the problem is whether a Democrat or a Republican is in office, I think there is something fundamentally flawed in the way we operate when confronting a crisis, and it seems to have manifested itself sometime between the Valdez and Katrina.
Does our machinery just have too many moving parts, or is the power to make a decision too many levels away for anyone to act? You would think by now that people with the appropriate expertise would be arranged into some kind of command and control structure, and everybody involved would know the same stuff. The individual pieces should be able to perform whatever role they have without without the decision wandering it's way through some convoluted corridors. The way it is now, any decision is likely to be overtaken by events before it can be implemented.
Causes David Beemer Supports
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