Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Gettin’ Up On My Soap Box

I’m not usually someone who gets too involved in politics or political discussion.  However, recent events just really get under my skin.

I’m going to start with a disclaimer:  I am not defending the actions of BP and I think they should be held fully accountable for clean up.  Nor did I watch President Obama’s address this evening.

That being said, horrible things happen every day.  Floods, earthquakes, disease epidemics.  They are all horrible things and I wouldn’t wish them to happen to anyone.  But they are a part of life and in order to live on this planet it is something we must deal with.

And in order to maintain the lifestyles we lead today, we must also deal with disasters such as oil spills.

I don’t watch/listen to the talking heads very often.  But lately, the news is so one sided, that I am particularly not listening.  I’ve seen interviews with environmental groups who would have the resources/volunteers to aid in cleanup efforts standing on the beach twiddling their thumbs.  I’ve seen the very people who created this mess sitting in front of Congress rather than developing a strategic plan for stopping the leak.  I’ve seen government agencies make broad, generalized statements about the disaster, when they have no practical experience with something of this magnitude.

And President Obama has made 4 trips down to the gulf.  And what good does that do?  People who should be working to fix the problem then get to take time out of their day to show the President around and stand around for a photo op.

This is not the time for congressional hearings and photo ops.  This is the time when people need to be working around the clock to find a working solution to the problem.  All resources should be focused on fixing the problem.  Not blaming one company for their prior safety violations, or another company for their outdated emergency response plan, or a government agency for not monitoring the companies.  This is not the time for scientists for argue about the actual flow rate of leaking oil.  There will be years and years for that. 

What’s done is done.  This is a horrible tragedy.  But playing the blame game is not going to fix anything.  Now is the time to find a solution and start to deal with the aftermath.  This is not something that one person, or one company, or one agency will be able to solve.  Everyone will have to work together at some point.  Why shouldn’t we start now?