Thursday, June 17, 2010


Rep. Barton (R. Texas) retracts his statement but really, isn't it a shakedown?  I would feel better if BP decided who to compensate themselves and any disagreement handled by the courts.  Instead we are going to have an "independent" panel make the decisions.

What Mr. Barton retracted:
I think it is a tragedy of the first proportion that a private corporation can be subjected to what I would characterize as a shakedown, in this case, a $20 billion shakedown, with the attorney general of the United States, who is legitimately conducting a criminal investigation and has every right to do so to protect the interests of the American people, participating in what amounts to a $20 billion slush fund that's unprecedented in our nation's history, that's got no legal standing, and which sets, I think, a terrible precedent for the future.
So I'm only speaking for myself. I'm not speaking for anybody else. But I apologize.

Read more:

I agree.  It is a "terrible precedent"."

Trend of Gulf Oil-Spill Estimates

Monday, June 14, 2010

killing schoolgirls

According to CNN International, girls are poisoned in Afghanistan because they go to school.
Kabul, Afghanistan -- About 60 schoolgirls in Afghanistan's Balkh province appear to have been poisoned and required hospitalization, the Ministry of Health said Sunday.
I will never understand this sort of thing.  I can understand, perhaps, being offended for religious reasons, by the education of women, but I cannot understand how that same religion can condone murder as retribution for the offense.  Or using deadly violence against innocent people as a form of political statement.


It's all fine and good to blame BP for the Gulf oil spill.  They are taking responsibility, so why not let them do their best to clean up the mess and pay the valid claims?  No, we have to meddle and coerce them not to pay their shareholders their dividend even though BP claims to have enough money anyway:
The company’s $10.5 billion annual dividend has become a point of contention as President Obama has said BP should not be paying stockholders when fishermen, oil workers and small-business owners are saying they cannot get the company to pay their loss claims from the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. (NYT, June 14, 2010)
And the company, Transocean LTD (RIG),  that was operating the drilling rig? We'll see.

BP Gulf of Mexico Response page.