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On BP's Planet Locals are "Prospering" from the Oil Disaster

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Despite the billions that will be lost this summer in tourism and fishing dollars, British Petroleum cannot help but try and somehow paint a pretty picture.

Benoit Faucon, writing on the Wall Street Journal's The Source, has come across the latest issue of BP's internal staff communications magazine called Planet BP. An article in the magazine, tries to spin the upside of the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster, stating that:

"Much of the region's [nonfishing boat] businesses -- particularly the hotels -- have been prospering because so many people have come here from BP and other oil emergency response teams," another report says. Indeed, one tourist official in a local town makes it clear that "BP has always been a very great partner of ours here...We have always valued the business that BP sent us." [my emphasis]

Michael Sebastian at Ragan Communications, has the best comment I've seen so far on this latest rose-glasses spindoctoring by the oil giant:

"BP must stand for Ballsy Propaganda."

Well put. To try and say that the local communities being absolutely devastated both economically and environmentally by this disaster are somehow better off is the worst PR spin I have heard from BP yet.

What about next summer when the clean up crews are gone, the beaches still stink of oil and there's no fish to catch? And the year after that? I wonder what those hotels will look like then.

This is no time for spindoctoring, the public need straight-up answers and updates on what is going on. Any attempts to put lipstick on this giant oily pig of a problem is only going to erode the tiny speck of trust anyone has left in British Petroleum.

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