So much for the post I’d planned to write before I remembered that I’d saved Goldman Sachs Reveals it Shorted Gulf of Mexico quoting the email from “Goldman employee Fabrice “Fabulous Fab” Tourre” to his girlfriend bragging about the firm “taking a ‘big short’ position on the Gulf:
“One oil rig goes down and we’re going to be rolling in dough,” Mr. Tourre wrote in one email. “Suck it, fishies and birdies!”
Gotta tell you — there are probably a lot of out-of-work folks all along the coast who read that and thought how “fabulous” it would be if a few of those oil-sucking birdies and fishes could give Fab a “big short”.
Speaking of short, just how tall do you think BP’s 12-year-old “expert” might be? The Sun Herald picked up the story from Carl Hiaasen, columnist for the Miami Herald, who reported this “absolutely true news item”:
British Petroleum says it is considering a plan to plug the main leak on the sunken Deepwater Horizon oil rig by shooting it full of shredded car tires, old golf balls and knotted ropes.
You decide if the rest of Hiaasen’s column is “absolutely true”:
BP announced today that it has fired its top engineer for safety design and replaced him with Jody McNamara, age 12, a sixth-grade honors student at the Dwight Eisenhower Middle School in Tulsa, Okla. McNamara…was offered the BP job after a panel of industry experts selected his 250-word essay, “How To Stop Undersea Oil Leaks Really Quick,” over thousands of other entries…
In his winning essay, McNamara proposed several possible options for sealing the ruptured oil pipeline. He said the most promising plan would require “a super-long straw” and approximately 3,700 metric tons of Quaker oatmeal.
[BP chief executive Tony] Hayward later conceded that the aquarium experiment was more sophisticated than any that BP had undertaken. “It could have saved us the fortune that we blew on that stupid dome,” he added ruefully.
“You ever let that goop sit in a cereal bowl for an hour or two? It turns to rock,” the sixth-grader explained at his press conference. “There’s nothing that stuff won’t clog up.” McNamara said he successfully tested the technique using a homemade Lego model of the Deepwater Horizon, submerged in a 30-gallon aquarium in his brother’s bedroom. Don’t worry, we took out all the fish first,” he said.
Say what you will about McNamara’s plan but the kid’s overnight solution beats the socks off the two or more months it will take for BP’s plan to be in place, according to the status report on the relief wells in the Times Picayune:
BP is drilling two relief wells, which will permanently intersect with the damaged well and shut down the flow of oil into the Gulf of Mexico by pumping concrete into it.
BP began drilling a second relief well Monday, a back-up to the well that is scheduled for completion in August. Though the relief wells are generally considered to be an effective means of permanently shutting off the well, they are also a more time-consuming option.
Drilling relief wells could take months because the drilling process requires frequent starts and stops for safety testing.
BP also announced a Plan B Z yesterday and, hey, this time the company is “going Hollywood. I kid you not – the Times Picayune is telling Kevin Costner’s idea for cleaning up Gulf of Mexico oil spill gets nod from BP…
BP has decided that a $24 million oil-water separator promoted by actor Kevin Costner could be useful in its response to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, WWL-TV reports.
Costner came forward this month with an oil spill cleanup technology he started devising after the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska. He demonstrated a centrifuge that he said could be placed on barges and used to suck in oily water, separate the oil and spit out mostly pure water.
BP watched the machine at work this past Thursday.
If Costner could scale his product down to sell for $19.99, I bet it would sell like hotcakes on the Home Shopping Network. I’d buy one in a heartbeat – and clear the drain in my kitchen sink.
Who wouldn’t want to vacation here with all the Coast has to offer? I can’t imagine – and, believe it or not, neither can Sid Salter, the Clarion Ledger’s Perspective’s Editor who offered tis perspective in on the problem in Walking that tightrope between tourism and oil fears:
Mississippi officials are walking a difficult tightrope between trying to honestly deal with both the realities and the fears of the Deepwater Horizon oil well accident in the Gulf and immediate concerns for salvaging the current tourist season for Coast residents whose livelihoods depend upon it.
However well intentioned his remarks, Republican Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant was the first official to fall off that tightrope last week.
During a May 12 speech at the Coastal Development Strategies Conference at the Mississippi Coast Convention Center, Bryant told a story about an encounter with a Coast resident earlier in the week who told him he could smell “gasoline” when he walked outside his home.
“Well, he might want to check his lawn mower,” Bryant said. “That is not gasoline coming out of the Gulf.”
…Bryant might have said it differently and less abrasively, but the message was on target – it’s insane to write off this year’s tourist season on the Gulf Coast when the oil hasn’t yet reached the shorelines.
Salter reports Bryant’s remarks, “brought a torrent of criticism of Bryant in the Gulf Coast media and accusations of insensitivity from the Mississippi Democratic Party”. I wonder if there’s any truth to the rumor that the Republican party has ordered truckloads of fancy riding lawnmowers and giving one to every golfer vacationing on the coast this summer. Par for the course? Down here, you bet! Y’all Come!