Friday, June 18, 2010

I Think I Smell a Rat

I am not good at much of anything, terrible pool player, fair golfer, awful housekeeper, but I have always been cursed with one exceptional talent. I can smell bullshsit, horseshit, and rats as well as and usually better than the average K-9. And with all the posturing and pontificating during the hearings with BP’s CEO today, rat odor drifted all about.

First, BP is a rat, plain and simple, a corporate rat. The Supreme Court holds that a corporation is a person with Constitutional rights of a person, which is ratty theory because as one wise son claims you can’t hang a corporation, put it in jail, or give it a traffic ticket it. The officers of BP or any huge corporation are not liable for a blessed thing except making money for their stock holders, regardless of impact on others. Consequently, they can be called into a Congressional hearing for several hours of tongue lashing, but the bottom line is that they do not give a rat’s behind what is said about them or to them; they will make out just fine as long as they don’t get indicted on criminal charges. So all Tony Hayward’s apologies and ignorance about what’s going on in his company is simply rat-odor. Remember, these dudes get paid magna-bucks for knowing how to operate fortunes ( Tony Hayward made a mere 4.7 million in 2009), but in every ratty case I can remember from Exxon to Enron to BP, the big cheese, when put on the girddle of public inspection, either didn’t get the memo, make the decision, or was out of the loop when the poop washed ashore. I do not care what Tony Hayward made or what he will make; the rat stink will rise when we find out all this stutter-stepping and juking by him was all fancy footwork- a stall to buy BP time to head for sheltered bankruptcy or another method to avoid paying up( anyone know British law?). I know about the 20 billion funds, but unless that is delivered in a couple of trunks of cash, I remain skeptical. As I wrote in my last rambling, do not forget the ratty, Valdez award diminished from 5 billion, to 2.5 billion to 508 million. (Ooops-a-doozle, one other rat-speak of note: who said,” “You have my word we will make you whole again.”? Nope, not Tony Hayward (oh he might have) it was Don Cornett, Exxon executive.)

Another sad waft of rat odor rises from all the schemers and liars and cheats who, as I type, are padding expenses, profits, anticipated revenues, and whatnot in order to get in on the 20 billion. Now these vermin will obfuscate the efforts of honest people who have really suffered. Plus, awards to the honest will be diminished because some of the crooks will actually pull it off. And just think about all the drag-heeled, round-heeled, skunk-breathed lawyers who are lined up to open offices all along the Gulf so that they can start representing the entrepreneurs in Minnesota who lost money because they couldn’t get Gulf oysters. And my dear folks we have not heard yet about the no-bid contracts that are, in my estimation, being hid out until some cyber-reporter finds out. Oh, wow there’s a whole lot of stinking going on that we won’t know about right away. More about this later, I guarantee.

The biggest rats of all, as you probably, know are presently in Congress. First that moron from Texas calls the 20 billion fund, a shakedown. That would be Texas republican, Joe Barton, no doubt looking to find a wedge of lunatic votes to help him get a rung up on the ladder to a Presidential nomination. Echoing Barton’s opinion was another “fiscal” conservative republican, Tom Price of Georgia, imbecile-at-large. Jayzus, that notion was then picked up by Rust Limpbag, dope addict, felon, lard-ass, calling it a slush fund. Well, I am too transparent in my feelings about that fat bastard, but Waxman, Engel, Melancon, Stupak, Gingrey , are the worst rodents of all. This sordid cabal of elected officials has known all along (since taking office and before) that the Mineral Management Service had been stuffed with cronies of Dick Cheney’s (he of secret meetings with oil industry). Cheney used his Wyoming buddy, Sansonetti, a GOP activist to select personnel for Department of the interior. AND from 2000 to 2008, both directors of MMS were from Wyoming republican politics. The former resigned over failure to collect royalties (did he go to jail?) and the later is now the president of a lobbying group, National Ocean Industries Group. (Once again our tax dollars go for years to do-nothings who then flop over to work for a lobby.) All these representatives screaming at Tony Hayward have known for years that the agency responsible for regulating safety on oil rigs was plum full of top dogs, hand selected by politicians close to Big Oil, yet not one did anything about it. That is Ratsville at its best, an act, and tomfoolery, TV-face-time at the expense of the nation and for the good of nobody.

Of course, this gift of mine isn’t so special: you all know they are rats, all of them don’t you? Or are you one of those who think there are only demorats, no republican rats on board?

“I Think I Smell a Rat”- Buddy Guy

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Cold Hard Truth

OK. I ducked the oil leak-gush-spew-deal yesterday and have held myself in check because I wanted to try to give my pea-brain some time to sort through all the garbage dumped out by politicians and the press. Plus, I wanted to reflect on what my personal stance was and is on the oil business. I think I am consistently on record as having two positions on oil drilling and exploration: first, I think we need some areas in our country that are just off limits to commerce, places that are unspoiled for the use of folks who enjoy seeing what the country looks like without oil derricks or mine shafts shoved in at every angle. So stay the fuck out of ANWR; second, I have been pretty consistent in saying, preaching, yelling that OK we need oil for now so drill IF we have the technology to avoid environmental disasters, AND we ought not trust an Big Oil when it says, “Oh, don’t worry; we have it covered.” How do you really spell horseshit? I am on record as being a worrier and a skeptic.

For those morons who claim that the Big Oil will govern itself, and it is not to its benefit to have disasters: when the hell are you going to wake up (or quit lying)? The environmental nastiness created by the Valdez wreck went something like this in my eye: huge ship full of oil, driven by fucked up captain runs aground, creating massive spill. That’s gross negligence. Alaska’s civil court awards 500 billion to those Small BUSINESSES harmed by Exxon’s negligence. Alaska’s Supreme Court,on appeal by Exxon, lowers damages to 250 billion. Then the Bushes (that’s the Big Oil family in case you missed it) go to work and get as many conservative, pro-BIG-business justices that they can on the Supreme Bench. Said Bench, 20 years later lowers damages to 50 billion based on an archaic, maritime, salvage law, and our nation ignores that decision because it is good for Big Oil and jobs and all that other Republican horseshit that holds some minds hostage. Now we got the BP mess. And listen up, in case you are not connecting: do you really think BP somehow missed the Supreme Court’s decision on the Valdez incident?

OK. Move onto the recent poll that claims 70 percent of us do not think President Obama is tough enough on BP. Wow, it is sorry to live where 70 percent of the population is so frigging stupid. First, how long have we had as a nation to develop, internally, technologies that could be applied in such disasters (subs with giant pliers, huge boats with giant Hoovers, 400 yard rolls of Bounty, giant cut-off-valves)? Second, how many years have regulations been in place that we have let political appointees that run our agencies ignore? How many years have we let Big Oil and their puppets in Congress write legislations and regulations slanted in favor of the oil business? How many years have we allowed politicians and Big Oil identify oil supply as a national security issue and go right along with it, nation of lobotomized sheep, without demanding conservation, innovation, and alternatives? And now, you stupid sons a bitches, you want to blame it on Obama? Just what would you have him do: nuke the well (morons), smack the CEO on national TV (OK you wrestlemaniacs out there I know you would like that because you don’t have enough sense to grow mold), freeze the assets of BPUS (how damn long will that be in courts and how much will it costs the government which you want reduced, imbeciles), jump up and down and cuss and carry on like me (hardly Presidential as far as I am concerned)? And what about all you dullards out there, including Piyissinupants Jindal, who want government out of your lives, how can you say out of one side of you face say you want less government, then out of the other side of you slack-jawed, drooling faces say that the President isn’t doing enough as far as you are concerned? Did you somehow miss 9th grade civics, the part where the President is PART of the government? (What are the chances that the poll included only those who grew up under another republican fiasco, No Child Left Behind and who missed out on civics because it was moved out of curricula so that kids could learn how to draw pictures of the differences between French settlements and English ones.)Believe me, I am not in any mood to defend Obama but come on; take some ginkgo, eat more fish (if you can find any with oil or mercury in it), stay up longer studying for your urine tests, but get some sense somewhere (maybe Sam’s Club?). When you blame any President for this, you simply revel only how relentlessly obtuse you are.

Here’s a challenge for any one of you goofasses who think the President is not doing enough: tell me exactly what he should do, BUT whatever you pick, it cannot: affect BP’s stock or dividends (remember you are the ones who are constantly yelling,”It’s Merica and we honor our contracts.”; defy the good sense of physics (you know you can’t tell me that he ought to get on his Green Hornet outfit and swim down and plug it with a big was of Red Man.); finally it cannot involve a governmental solution BECAUSE you want less government. I will wait for about a week. Actually, I will wait until the ice caps melt in the hopes that you dopes drown, and I still won’t have a sensible reason why this could possibly be one President’s fault.

Gawd, you are so damn brainless that I am going to the bank and cut a check to the school districts where I taught just in case I taught anyone who was in the seventy percent of that poll. Way back when, I used to tell my students that the Chinese and Russians didn’t need to worry about weapons because we were going to dumb ourselves off the earth. I was right then and am now.

{Thanks, Jamie O’Hara, I think, for the title and to George Jones for singing the song}

Monday, June 14, 2010

When Will I Be Loved?

Cool song by Phil Everly with the following line-“I've been cheated
been mistreated, When will I be loved?” So, here I am trying to get my mind around lots of stuff this morning and these lines apply to so much going on in the country and in the news. I will not go too deep into the oil rupture folly (or tragedy, depending on whose stock you own) except to say if your stock in this country’s ability to identify and solve a problem hasn’t gone down, I suggest that you might want to consider a brain lubricant.

I am as guilty as the next of using the worn out question, “Damn, if we could put a man on the moon, why can’t we . . . .?” You know, just drop in any problem of the week and it seems to fit: get a 70 MPG car, find a cure to ALS, hold some corporation accountable,etfuckignceterratum. Sweet idea about that man-on-the-moon-thing= fits all sorts of situations just like the BP mess. Here we are 30 years after the man-on-the-moon-thing and not one freaking person can estimate with a reliable margin of error how much damn crude is coming out of that pipe. And I do not want to hear about how complicated it is, just give me a damn close guess, you know 10K barrels give or take a thousand which BTW is a 10 percent margin of error and even Gallup does better than that. OR better yet, give the problem to a couple of high schools in India where they are prepping engineers and let them have a go. Hmm- square feet of cross section of pipe X length of pipe X constant, average pressure X velocity of oil in pipe – friction in pipe- friction of fittings ( or did they blow off?) X Reynolds’s factor. We off shore all our other stuff might as well turn over this “complicated issue.” Or maybe, I’d just as well forget it; the dang Indian students would probably be bought to lie or cheat the numbers for some company’s benefit anyway. Plus, depending on if you are a bleeding-heart-liberal or a God-fearing-conservative, you are going to believe the number you want, science be damned and sense be damned. AND if BP or Exxon or RIG or any driller cannot answer this question they should not be fucking drilling at a mile deep anyway. Anyone who can figure the water pressure at one friggin mile, send it on in along with a sensible reason why you’d want to work on anything at that depth and I will post it. Oh yes, how come we know more about what's on the damn moon 384403 km away than what we do about the oceans right here? I don't need an Indian to tell me it makes no sense.

Or in a more current vein- did it really surprise anyone that somebody found a trillion dollars worth of mineral riches in Afghanistan? Hell, when did we go anywhere since WWII that was not really for some riches of one form or another? How long will take an Indian student to calculate the speed at which we will first, send in more troops; incorporate the Taliban so that its leaders are not culpable for anything; propose that Afghanistan become the fifty-first state? And how come we can get a trillion dollar estimate on mineral wealth in Afghanistan but can get a figure on volume of oil coming out of a damn pipe? Go figure. Anyone who can estimate the speed at which corporations and governments can create lies and statistics about all this wealth, send it on in and I will post it, too. I would like to give the Afghanis some advice on how to handle all this, but I fear being accused of hippieism or disloyalty.

Hell, I should not have started this; I am burnt from too much golf, my feet hurt, I am low on good-mood-medications; and I can’t see past my eyelashes. But, I do not have to see too far to know that the real and true problem for all of us is that we have been “made blue, lied to, turned down and pushed around” because we allow it. There’s just gots to be some love out there somewhere. In the meantime, I am going to go smoke a cheap cigar, bitch about too much government, bitch about not enough government, bitch about the poor woman who owns a big screen TV, bitch about the kid that gets a free lunch, bitch about too many taxes, and bitch about the government being broke. Have to be a pretty long cigar, but I am going to enjoy it.