THE BLOG

BP TARP and SLIME

05/25/2010 09:30 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011


How sad it is that the energy company enablers in our government don't determine that the Gulf coast is "Too Big to Fail". Maybe then they would stop dithering and take whatever decisive action necessary to prevent further ecological and economic destruction.

We could call it Tar Prevention, "TARP". But instead of throwing money at the corporate offenders, the taxpayers would immediately seize the whatever assets of British Petroleum it will take to effectively and quickly jam a cork in this devastating diarrhea.

Sorry if that seems impolite, but what better way to describe how the fouling of so many beaches and marshes, to say nothing of the lives of those who rely on their precious section of Mother Earth.

Yes, I know. You don't just take over an oil company. For starters they're all more powerful than any government... at any levels, federal, state or local.

It would take uncharacteristically bold action by the President. This would have to be far beyond the photo ops of his determined expression and clenched jaw. The leaks (pardon the expression) from aides informing us he's in his No-More-Mr-Nice-Guy-I-Really-
Mean-It-This-Time mode just aren't enough, not even when he's quoted as snapping "Plug the damned hole". He'll have to BE a decisive leader, not just play one on TV.

He needs to demand whatever takeover authority he requires from Congress: Big problem: Many members have been bought off by the energy companies.

Assuming he leaps over that impossible hurdle and gets the legislation passed in this election fundraising year, the biggest dilemma would be the choice of an agency to run the operation .

Let's see: Would it be the Minerals Management Service? Don't think so. It would be really hard to control an oil company when you're in the pockets of all of them like the fun-loving people at MMS.

How about others in Washington's alphabet soup? SEC? We can eliminate those guys with two words: "Bernie Madoff". And it's the same wherever you turn.

So it's been to the free market system and the oligarchs have cut whatever corners they want to. In this case they have shown they will keep the oil and revenue flowing in gushers. Even with inept regulators , the profiteers have been allowed run amok or in this situation amuck.

So why bother. Effective action may well be a fantasy. "Them that got" ain't about to give up their ill-gotten, and our government is too puny to make them pay to clean up their messes.

About the best we can expect is the appointment of still another commission like a panel to Study Limitations In Mitigating Emergencies (SLIME).

What we have sadly discovered is that when it comes to "Too Big to Fail" nothing is...certainly not our institutions, public or private. Unfortunately they are all failing us.