The Pseudo-Event for this week took place earlier today between President Barack Obama, his advisors and various executives of British Petroleum:
White House meeting with BP goes into overtime
June 16 (Reuters) – A White House meeting between Obama administration officials and executives at BP Plc (BP.L) (BP.N) went longer than expected on Wednesday as the two sides wrangled the company’s response to the oil spill.
Earlier BP and the White House reached a preliminary agreement for the London-based company to put some $20 billion into an escrow account to cover damage claims from the massive Gulf of Mexico spill.
According to a White House schedule, President Barack Obama was slated to attend the meeting for roughly 20 minutes starting at 10:15 a.m. The meeting was still going — though the president had long left — several hours later.
As is to be realized, this entire meeting was formally called to falsely reassure the American public that “something is getting done”. In reality, very powerful people met in a room to take a few pictures and make smug looks at each other from across the table. Obama’s presence, 20 minutes, just goes to show that theatrics play well in Washington and in the evening newscasts.
For those that aim to deconstruct the media and powerful PR firms that are our governments and big businesses, the BP oil spill has provided much material that is almost too rich t0 hoard to oneself.
To frame the arguments correctly, a look must be afforded at all sides that are dominating the airwaves:
OBAMA ADMIN AND DEMOCRATS–> The Obama administration has come out forcefully against BP, as any White House administration would do. They are calling for BP to cover all costs and “legitimate claims” and seek to use the political capital from this tragic event to pass energy reforms in Congress, which are actually structured as national energy taxes. Always seeking to disenfranchise the opposition, Government apologists are making hits against the “Tea Party Mentality”. They say that Tea Party types would have allowed an ever bigger oil spill to forgo government intervention, and that government intervention is now forever justified because of this oil spill.
EXTREME PROGRESSIVES–> Extreme progressives, in this case referring to Robert Reich, Chris Matthews and the folks at ThinkProgress, are convinced that the only solution is to nationalize BP and allow the government to take over. They seek to destroy BP and to eradicate all oil drilling in favor of “clean energy” that no one has seem to have invented yet. They believe that with government at the helm of such industries, more good than bad would result and more people would benefit across the board.
REPUBLICANS AND PARTISAN FOXNEWS CONSERVATIVES–> Taking the contrarian view as is politically, though not logically, easy to do, republicans and conservatives have been lighting up the airwaves and newspaper columns saying that Obama was “too slow” to react and could have “acted faster“. These points are only being put forth because the President is on Team A instead of Team B, and no doubt is present that, if the tables were switched, the exact opposite arguments would be used by the opposite sides. Resisting to save face is always a political game.
For those that see through the illogical arguments and reactions by media and party elites, this is an issue based on property rights and tort law. If business or land is affected by the spill, it should be legally adjudicated and the claim will be answered by BP under penalty of law. Note, however, that this doesn’t include talk of nationalization, reaction time or energy reforms. It focuses, instead, on the need to answer all claims and wrongs committed by the oil spill in a peaceful, legitimate manner that respects the rule of law and does not bend to hawkish populist impulses that threaten both property and liberty.