Wednesday, June 30, 2010

"Never Let A Good Crisis Go To Waste"

I'm morbidly fascinated with the ongoing Gulf of Mexico catastrophe. What's even more fascinating is this supposed ineptitude, or lack of a competent response by the US government.

I'm left with only one real conclusion - if this disaster were not instigated on purpose, our Government has certainly let it get to it's current (and increasingly worsening) state on purpose.


How else do you account for such insanity as this?

Three days after the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico began on April 20, the Netherlands offered the U.S. government ships equipped to handle a major spill, one much larger than the BP spill that then appeared to be underway. "Our system can handle 400 cubic metres per hour," Weird Koops, the chairman of Spill Response Group Holland, told Radio Netherlands Worldwide, giving each Dutch ship more cleanup capacity than all the ships that the U.S. was then employing in the Gulf to combat the spill.

To protect against the possibility that its equipment wouldn't capture all the oil gushing from the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico, the Dutch also offered to prepare for the U.S. a contingency plan to protect Louisiana's marshlands with sand barriers. One Dutch research institute specializing in deltas, coastal areas and rivers, in fact, developed a strategy to begin building 60-mile-long sand dikes within three weeks.

The Dutch know how to handle maritime emergencies. In the event of an oil spill, The Netherlands government, which owns its own ships and high-tech skimmers, gives an oil company 12 hours to demonstrate it has the spill in hand. If the company shows signs of unpreparedness, the government dispatches its own ships at the oil company's expense. "If there's a country that's experienced with building dikes and managing water, it's the Netherlands," says Geert Visser, the Dutch consul general in Houston.

In sharp contrast to Dutch preparedness before the fact and the Dutch instinct to dive into action once an emergency becomes apparent, witness the American reaction to the Dutch offer of help. The U.S. government responded with "Thanks but no thanks," remarked Visser, despite BP's desire to bring in the Dutch equipment and despite the no-lose nature of the Dutch offer --the Dutch government offered the use of its equipment at no charge. Even after the U.S. refused, the Dutch kept their vessels on standby, hoping the Americans would come round. By May 5, the U.S. had not come round. To the contrary, the U.S. had also turned down offers of help from 12 other governments, most of them with superior expertise and equipment --unlike the U.S., Europe has robust fleets of Oil Spill Response Vessels that sail circles around their make-shift U.S. counterparts.

Now why in holy hell would our Government do this? This is why I say the ONLY conclusion we can come to is that whoever is calling the shots here WANTS the environmental devastation this oil gusher is causing.

Why does neither the U.S. government nor U.S. energy companies have on hand the cleanup technology available in Europe? Ironically, the superior European technology runs afoul of U.S. environmental rules.

This is the supposed rationale...but it makes no logical sense whatsoever. Are there really union shippers who would happily watch as the entire gulf region is literally destroyed in both an environmental and economical sense...just to preserve the rules set up to protect their racket?

Let's delve more into this crazy rationale:

The voracious Dutch vessels, for example, continuously suck up vast quantities of oily water, extract most of the oil and then spit overboard vast quantities of nearly oil-free water. Nearly oil-free isn't good enough for the U.S. regulators, who have a standard of 15 parts per million -- if water isn't at least 99.9985% pure, it may not be returned to the Gulf of Mexico.

When ships in U.S. waters take in oil-contaminated water, they are forced to store it. As U.S. Coast Guard Admiral Thad Allen, the official in charge of the clean-up operation, explained in a press briefing on June 11, "We have skimmed, to date, about 18 million gallons of oily water--the oil has to be decanted from that [and] our yield is usually somewhere around 10% or 15% on that." In other words, U.S. ships have mostly been removing water from the Gulf, requiring them to make up to 10 times as many trips to storage facilities where they off-load their oil-water mixture, an approach Koops calls "crazy."

Not crazy....psychotic. Pathological. The supposed rationale here is that US Government is more interested in adhering to the environmental laws than averting an actual environmental catastrophe!

The Americans, overwhelmed by the catastrophic consequences of the BP spill, finally relented and took the Dutch up on their offer -- but only partly. Because the U.S. didn't want Dutch ships working the Gulf, the U.S. airlifted the Dutch equipment to the Gulf and then retrofitted it to U.S. vessels. And rather than have experienced Dutch crews immediately operate the oil-skimming equipment, to appease labor unions, the U.S. postponed the clean-up operation to allow U.S. crews to be trained.

A catastrophe that could have been averted is now playing out. With oil increasingly reaching the Gulf coast, the emergency construction of sand berms to minimize the damage is imperative. Again, the U.S. government priority is on U.S. jobs, with the Dutch asked to train American workers rather than to build the berms. According to Floris Van Hovell, a spokesman for the Dutch embassy in Washington, Dutch dredging ships could complete the berms in Louisiana twice as fast as the U.S. companies awarded the work. "Given the fact that there is so much oil on a daily basis coming in, you do not have that much time to protect the marshlands," he says, perplexed that the U.S. government could be so focused on side issues with the entire Gulf Coast hanging in the balance.

Postponed for training...while the oil keeps spewing from the damaged well every single second?

I believe this is all a dog and pony show - stalling tactics used by the Government to allow as much damage as possible while putting up the appearances of "doing something."

Now why would our government allow this disaster to happen? What's to gain here?

Rahm Emmanuel stated quite openly that they would "Never Let A Good Crisis Go To Waste."

Well, we are now in the midst of one fantastic fucking crisis.

I have this sinking feeling we're gonna find out real soon exactly why they deliberately and purposefully let this turn into the disaster that it now is.


Big Jay said...

This is a big problem. I too have been overwhelmed by the sheer incompetence displayed. This is the kind of information that needs to be broadcast far and wide.

IurnMan83 said...

It's a sad day to be an american, man. This, however, does not surprise me. When 9/11 happened, the US Govt. milked it for all it was worth and we're still in Afghanastan. May the Creator forgive us all!

Conan the Cimmerian said...

"I have this sinking feeling we're gonna find out real soon exactly why they deliberately and purposefully let this turn into the disaster that it now is."

But to believe in such a thing is would be almost a ....conspiracy (shutter).

And we all know there is no way certain groups might do things they perceive to be in their interest and against the larger interest! /sarcasm

To paraphrase GBFM, the conspiracy is right in front of your face, but you refuse to see it because then you might be seen as someone that believes in !CONSPIRACY!

Anonymous said...

I brought up BP's past support of the Sierra Club on a few forums when this happened. I could tell a few people thought I might be off my rocker to do so, but I had to wonder:

BP probably isn't crazy about us drilling for oil in our own gulf, which really might have a great deal of oil indeed, making it uneccessary for us to buy it from them. Middle Eastern interests probably don't want to see an America that doesn't need Middle Eastern oil, and want us involved in that part of the world diplomatically.

Wasting a great deal of our oil/causing an eco-disaster could be in the interest of the above parties as it might act as a political deterrent for the US to drill off its own shores for decades.

Who? Whom? (Again, I know).

I don't mean to be cynical (I really wasn't born that way, but life experience and watching the news all these years has left me so), but I wonder "who? whom?" after just about every story, playing every various angle I can concoct.

The response was what really made this event seem suspicious to me. We supposedly had those Kevin Costner centrifuges, so why weren't we using them? Something didnt seem right about the whole thing, and still doesn't. I dont have any proof, but my nose and gut tell me something is amiss.

jay c said...

...and instead of keeping the oil as contained as possible, BP sprays "dispersants" to spread the problem out. Sure. That makes sense. We wouldn't want to make the cleanup job any easier or anything.

Anonymous said...


Per the following WJ article:

“Before the ship can be pressed into service full time, it must pass certain hurdles. The ship, a cargo vessel that was retrofitted at TMT's expense to help with the spill, hasn't been tested in real-world conditions, so it is unclear whether it can effectively ingest the thin crude that is flowing from the well, said BP spokesman Scott Dean.”


“If the A Whale performs well, BP or the federal government could contract with TMT to work in the Gulf. TMT, a privately owned shipping company, invested tens of millions of dollars to turn the ship into a skimmer in Portugal and then sail it to the U.S. with a 32-man crew, according to Bob Grantham, project manager of TMT Offshore.”

The feds are massively incompetent, corrupt, treasonous, or a combination all three.

Given that the Dutch had all of this in place from the get go all of this nonsense is simply astounding.