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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 7/13/10

Big Pimper

By       (Page 1 of 3 pages)   4 comments
Message Daniel Bruno Sanz
America's Chernobyl and Its Censorship in the Land of Free Press and Free Speech

In Greek mythology, the five rivers of the Realm of Hades, and their symbolic meanings, are the Acheron (sorrow and woe), Cocytus (lamentation), Phlegethon (fire), Lethe (oblivion), and Styx (hate), the river upon which even the gods swore and in which Achilles was dipped to render him invincible. The Styx forms the boundary between the Earth and the underworld. The United States now drinks from these five rivers and risks being swept away by them.

As the philistines chanted "DRILL BABY DRILL," the behemoth BP ( British Petroleum, the former Anglo-Persian Oil Company whose post WWII meddling helped set the stage for the current confrontation with Iran ) and its junior American partners Halliburton (of Dick Cheney and Iraq invasion intrigue) and Transocean, the Texas rig owner with headquarters in Cayman and Switzerland that registered the oil platform under the flag of the Marshall Islands, confidently plunged their drill bits 5,000 feet below the sea, where pressures are 25,000 pounds per square inch, and like a blood thirsty mosquito stuck, as it were, a proboscis through 18,000 feet of bedrock to drink of the devil's sulphurous nectar. You see, there was money to be made, indeed, to be minted, and after 30,000 oil wells drilled all over the Gulf, the Deepwater Horizon appeared to be just another routine straw dipped into the devil's honeydew. But the miserly oil oligopoly took the Don of the Underworld for a fool and didn't pay him his cut.

With a propaganda campaign called Beyond Petroleum, the haughty number four of the Fortune 500 even bamboozled itself into thinking it could damn the river Styx at will...the devil be damned. With its disingenuous green leaf logo, the Big Pimper bluffed and beamed the Big Lie into the subconscious of millions of consumers who, with Al Gore's help, had the inchoate notion that fossil fuels could ruin our world. Truth be told, a measly 0.4% of Big Phony's energy production was alternative energy. Beyond Prosecution even elected to insure itself against casualty to avoid the Big Premiums demanded by greedy insurance companies ( Why don't you try that with your car). After all, U.S. law, the supreme law, set a cap of $75 million on the liabilities an oil company could face, and that represented less than two days earnings at BP. Therefore the devil, with all his unknown and unknowable unknowns like Rumsfeld at a press conference about Operation Iraqi Oil, obtuse mathematics, laws of physics, probabilities and Black Swans unleashed by Nicolas Nassim Taleb, could be kept at bay because at the end of the day his mischief was only worth $75 million. Touchà ! You see, lobbyists and campaign contributions are a good investment.

The fourth richest corporation on Earth didn't even want to bear the cost of sound business practices: According to U.S. lawmakers, BP used six instead of the standard twenty one centralizers before cementing the well, didn't test the cement bond, chose a cheaper method to prevent explosive gas from rising unchecked to the surface, and stinted on a backup blowout preventer -- all to "save time/money," to borrow a phrase from one internal BP e-mail. . "Once they realized they had oil down there, all the decisions they made were designed to get that oil at the lowest cost," said Peter Galvin of the Center for Biological Diversity, which has been working with congressional investigators probing the disaster. "It's been a doomed voyage from the beginning." Evidence of BP's corner-cutting, to the point of intentional negligence and reckless endangerment, is overwhelming.

As far back as February, more than two months before the colossal explosion that incinerated eleven anonymous workers and unlocked the floodgates from Hell, BP was unable to control what it had started. It took ten days to plug the first cracks, according to reports BP filed with the Minerals Management Service that were later delivered to congressional investigators. Cracks in the surrounding rock continued to complicate the drilling operation during the ensuing weeks. Left unsealed, they can allow explosive natural gas to rush up the shaft. Coincidentally, Goldman Sachs and BP CEO Tony Hayward sold large percentages of their BP shares at this time, still a month before the devil's restitution payments with interest and penalties started in earnest on April 20.
An e-mail message from BP drilling engineer Brian Morel to colleague Richard Miller six days before the April 20 explosion called the project a "nightmare well which has everyone all over the
place," according to the lawmakers' letter. Five days before the blast, BP concluded the method to
secure the final 1,200 feet of well, called a liner/tieback, was too time-consuming and expensive. Using an alternative called a long-string casing would save at least three days and about $7 million to $10 million in costs.

In early March, BP told the minerals agency the company was having trouble maintaining control of surging natural gas, according to e-mails released May 30 by the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which is investigating the spill. While gas surges are common in oil drilling, companies have abandoned wells if they determine the risk is too high. When a Gulf well known as Blackbeard threatened to blow out in 2006, Exxon Mobil Corp. shut the project down. At Deepwater Horizon, BP decided to forge ahead anyway "come Hell or high water." With hurricanes about to form over the GOM, BP, and the nation, will get both.
In the days and hours before the explosion BP management applied high pressure on workers to finish drilling because the Deepwater Horizon rig leased from Transocean Ltd. was 43 days late for its next job, a delay that had already cost the company as much as $21 million in leasing fees. As of this writing, BP claims to have spent $2 billion on the clean up and $40 billion has been wiped off the company's stock value. The devil, like the Godfather, will not be deprived of his due respect and protection money. Presently, revenge will be exacted a thousand, even ten thousand times over. For every dollar BP saved by being stingy, it will pay $1000 and more until its balance sheet chokes in red ink and BP dies like a Brown pelican drowning in the Apocalypse of oil and death engulfing the GoM.

But that wont be nearly enough to pay the debt compounded with interest at 1000%. The awesome forces of geology, hitherto called the wrath of an angry god and guided by the inexorable laws of physics and chemistry, with the righteousness of the Furies and indifferent to the plight of the innocent, will not be moved by BP's slick charm offensive, its gag order on vulnerable fishermen and the censorship by the U.S. government and corporate media in the Land of the Free, Free Speech and Free Press.

The lords of Hades wont stop with the mass extermination of coral reefs, the Blue Fin Tuna, dolphins, whales and the extinction of endangered sea turtles. Mankind must also be sickened, made miserable and be reduced in number before this is over, and it will not be over for many years to come. This is a dress rehearsal for the reversal of nations, the decline of empires both corporate and imperialist, and the extinction of peoples. A hundred years ago, Lenin said that if you give the Capitalists enough rope, they will hang themselves. This time, between the oilpocalypse and the climate change it will exacerbate, they may have hung us all.

Corruption, American Style

Since 2008 it has been public knowledge that the Minerals Management Service, the U.S. government agency the regulates the exploitation of trillions of dollars worth of mineral wealth theoretically owned by the American people, was beset by financial self-dealing, cocaine and meth abuse, questionable gifts and sex between its employees and people from the companies it is charged to regulate. It is plausible that the problems started during the deregulatory mania promulgated by Ronald Reagan a generation ago. Obama and his Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar inherited the agency and its culture from G.W. Bush. Indeed, just days before the April 20 BP explosion, president Obama, turning his back on early campaign pledges he later abandoned, trumpeted the safety and efficacy of deep offshore drilling. He ended the moratorium on new offshore drilling that had been in place since Reagan was president! Clearly, Obama is out of his depth on this issue and was seduced by the assurances (and campaign money) of Big Oil and its lapdogs. The ensuing crisis nearly toppled his presidency and obligated him to visit Louisiana four times in as many weeks.

"It turns out, by the way, that oil rigs today generally don't cause spills. They are technologically very advanced."

- President Barack Obama, April 2, 2010

In 2008, BP donated $71,000 to Obama for America.


The catastrophe is not nearly over and, as we shall see, has the potential to sicken hundreds of thousands of Americans in a silent, slow motion holocaust. America's pre-existing condition, the health care crisis, will intensify. Long term, long after BP is bankrupt, millions of Americans will get cancer, the genes of embryos will be affected and billions of fish, birds and other creatures will die and those that survive will carry poison in their flesh. The toxins from the oil and the chemical deployed by BP to disperse (hide) the oil, Corexit (should be renamed Hidezit) are now in the food chain. Corexit is banned in the U.K. and other countries. It was determined that:

....excessive exposure (to Corexit 9527A ) may cause central nervous system damage, nausea, vomiting, anesthetic or narcotic effects,' and 'repeated or excessive exposure to butoxyethanol
Millions of gallons of Corexit have been sprayed over the GoM by BP in an effort to hide the body (of oil.) The EPA ordered BP to take "immediate steps to scale back the use of dispersants" but BP refused. Why don't you say no to the U.S. government and see what happens.

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Daniel Bruno Sanz writes about financial and political affairs. His areas of expertise include currencies, stock markets, Latin America, Japan and Russia. In early 2007, he predicted that Obama would win the Democratic primary when polls showed (more...)
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