Friday, May 28, 2010

I don’t know why anyone should be surprised, much less shocked , by the catastrophic oil well blowout in the Gulf Of Mexico—unless, of course, you’ve been living under a rock. Environmentalist and reputable scientists have been warning us about the risks of off shore oil drilling for at least 30 years.

Politicians, presidents and regulators have been in the back pocket of Big Oil for a long as I have been drawing political cartoons and that is 50 years. However, that particular relationship reached a new high—or rather low—when the Bush administration allowed Vice President Dick Cheney to gather oil executives together to secretly rewrite U.S. energy policy.

The only new aspect to this debacle is the blatant disregard for even the pretense of regulatory oversight by the Minerals Management Service which allowed BP to write its own “regulations.”

The hypocritical dimensions to this tragedy are almost too numerous to mention, not the least of it are the Senators and Congressmen who are, today, sitting in judgement with their back pockets filled with contributions from the oil industry.

Then there is Mr. Kum Ba Ya, who has been President for a year and apparently had a deaf ear to all the environmental and scientific road signs blinking DANGER! DANGER! He bought into the oil industry fairy tale about the technological advances that made deep water drilling a viable alternative.

This is not to mention the myth that offshore drilling would greatly add to our energy independence.The only thing it will add is big oil profits.

Which brings me to two questions: Why wasn't the adminstration and BP mustering barrers to protect the Lousiana wetlands on day two after the blowout? And why aren't giant oil tankers in the gulf sucking up the oil spill?