Skip to main content

Here's a question that is bothering me: why are BP and the Federal government telling two different stories about the importance of closing the vents on the containment cap over BP's leaking well?

It's certainly possible that the government's position (that the vents should be closed) is wrong, and if so, they need to clarify the record. But I'm far more suspicious of BP's position -- that we don't need to close the vents -- and it all comes down to one reason: money.

Let me explain. The one thing that everybody agrees on is that if the vents were closed and we could bring all the oil to the surface, we'd have a good idea what the flow rate actually is. Another independent researcher is now pegging the rate at 100,000 barrels per day, but if we captured all the oil, we'd have a much more reliable figure for the flow-rate.

So what does that have to do with money? Well, if you were BP, you'd know the fines that will be levied against you are calculated by the barrel. And if you're BP and you've been spewing 100,000 barrels per day since April 20, you be looking at a fine so far of $21.5 billion -- a fine that's growing ever single day. (That's if they get hit with the $4,300 per barrel maximum.)

And if the flow rate is as high as 100,000 as some fear, then as long as the well is flowing, BP has a financial incentive to not bring all the oil to the surface, because bringing the oil to the surface will allow us to calculate the total flow rate. Given that reality, when BP starts downplaying the urgency of closing vents to bring more oil to the surface, it's only natural to be suspicious. (And when they start talking about needing to wait for a new cap to be deployed sometime in July, there's even more reason to be suspicious.)

If BP is playing games here with capturing the oil, the administration needs to put it to an end, and they need to do it now. Either way, this is a critical -- and perhaps defining -- moment of this crisis, and the administration needs to get it right.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:28 AM PDT.

Tags

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  BP is kaput... (18+ / 0-)

    Per NY Times, the writing is on the wall.  The liabilities will be firewalled, and the valuable assets bought by Shell or Exxon.

    If BP truly cared, why do we now have to wait 2-3 more days for another ship to arrive to handle processing of >15k barrels?  Shouldn't that ship have been there, on standby, 3 weeks ago?  Why is it just coming NOW?

    •  You just answered your question. (6+ / 0-)

      ...if they don't capture it then it doesn't doesn't exist for fines....

      Whatever the Repuglicans say, the opposite is the truth .

      by MariaWr on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:33:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That was Market Speculaton By Some (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DocGonzo

      We are talking about a company that had 17 billion dollars of proftis last year. Even if BP had to pay out a 100 billion over the next decade they would still be profitable. Worst case sceniro, BP looses 50%-100% of it profits over the next few years and then continues to loose 1-5% over the next couple of decades as claims are resolved. Sure it is a huge loss, but BP would still be solvent. BP may very well try to wall off its liablity by breaking its corporation into parts that own the liablity and little else but they will only be able to do that if the US and Britain lets them. I think that this disaster will have so many unforseen dire consequences that BP is not going to be allowed to do that.

      •  Stock Market Dogpile (0+ / 0-)

        Yeah, but BP's already lost like half its market capitalization, and "no profits for the next few years" would put them onto the penny stocks range.  At that point, any sort of bad news could put them under.  The stock market is very unforgiving in that sense.

    •  no, it won't be kaput (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      defluxion10, annieli

      the British government will simply nationalize BP.  Again.

      But even the British government would be hard-pressed to bail out BP's potential liabilities, since they, like us, just had to bail out all their rich-fuck bankers.  

      Which leads me to believe that the US will ultimately cave, and that the fine won't really end up being all that massive. Much of BP is American-owned.  They won't want the British government to seize their investments.

      •  Lawyers, Guns, and Money as always n/t (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        dadadata

        "...calling for a 5" deck gun is not parody. Not by a long shot." (gnaborretni)

        by annieli on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:52:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Way to wreck the "special relationship". (0+ / 0-)

        Explain to me again why the Crown would nationalize BP in the face of this disaster and seize American assets?  I'm not following.

        People are fungible. You can have them here or there. - Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, responding

        by peterborocanuck on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:53:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Because if BP goes under, it's the end of the (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          peterborocanuck, DocGonzo

          British economy. BP is one of the few companies they have that can still compete on the global level. Both economically and politically, they simply cannot allow BP to go under.

          And since BP is partly owned by Americans (and also by Dutch and a few others), nationalizing BP necessarily means that the shares owned by those foreigners are now invested in the British government, not in BP.

          Nationalizing BP would, of course, also clearly signal the political end of the Thatcher free-market era. For many, that would be a very good signal to send.

          But of course nationalizing BP could also spark conflict with the WTO and the entire international corporate structure.  There have not been any large-scale nationalizations in an industrialized country since the WTO assumed international power. It may provoke one hell of a fight over the "rights of sovereign national governments" versus the "international free trade structure".  It could get veeeerrrryyyyy interesting.

      •  well, I've chatted with a couple of Brits that I (0+ / 0-)

        know, all of them Labour Party-ites.  Their shared feeling seems to be that there's probably not the political will in the UK to bail out BP--and in any case there's probably no money available to do it. They've already had their fill of bailing out big corporations.

        Whether that changes if BP really finds itself up against the wall, well . . . . who knows.

        But they agreed with me that the US government probably will not force BP into that situation, and will most likely go easy on the fines.

        I'm very interested in what the WTO would do in the face of a nationalization.  But I guess we will not find out.

    •  Oh, good. (0+ / 0-)

      More consolidation in the oil industry. Maybe when it all finishes wrapping up into one they can give it a good name like Standard Oil.

      I demand the government respect my 18th amendment rights!

      by Decih on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:15:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  BP is playing games and Obama is OK with that. (11+ / 0-)

    I'll be shocked if this administration does anything to hold BP fully accountable.

    Dump Obama: An ethical sewer who ignores his legal obligation to prosecute people who tortured prisoners to death. Good at photo ops, though.

    by expatjourno on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:31:06 AM PDT

  •  Of course BP is playing games. (11+ / 0-)

    That's what all big corporations do before, during, and after a crisis.  It's their fiduciary duty :)

  •  Figure the amount and BILL THEM!!!111!!! nt (0+ / 0-)

    Whatever the Repuglicans say, the opposite is the truth .

    by MariaWr on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:31:20 AM PDT

    •  they can do it the same way it works when (0+ / 0-)

      you "lose" your ticket at the parking garage - they charge you the max rate.  so if the gov't says, we will assume (for the fine) that the daily amount was the "max", unless you can prove otherwise that it was less...

  •  reduce fine for captured oil (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cedwyn, GN1927, Catte Nappe
    This will give them a strong incentive to capture as much as possible.

    And that $4300/bbl fine thing will be blithly ignored by a bazillion kossacks who think they're not fixing the leak because they want to sell the oil their capturing.

    Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

    by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:31:27 AM PDT

    •  On a definitional level (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      George

      would captured oil be counted as spilled oil?

      I mean, stuff that comes through the cap and up the pipe to the Enterprise was never in the sea. There's a decent legal argument that therefore it was never spilled. Wouldn't that be a 100% reduction in the fine?

      •  maybe (0+ / 0-)

        Honestly, I'd be okay with that. It's certainly an incentive.

        Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

        by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:07:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Indeed It Is (0+ / 0-)

          BP is planning on selling the oil it recovers. BP will successfully argue in court that the recovered oil isn't subject to the fines, because it wasn't really spilled.

          So indeed BP already has that incentive. Why are you going around insisting that fines be waived and other changes made to go easy on BP, without first looking into whether what you're saying is relevant or not?

          "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

          by DocGonzo on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:31:33 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  good point (0+ / 0-)

            I'll stand corrected on that one. But I think it also shows just how strongly incentivized BP is to make the capture as efficient as possible. So if they're NOT capturing, there's likely a very good reason for it technically.

            Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

            by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:39:08 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Reasons (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Nice Ogre

              I see no reason to give BP any benefit of any doubt. Evidently the reason they're not capturing as much at the surface as the current hack gives capacity to send up is because they don't have enough, or big enough, ships at the surface. But more are coming. However, it doesn't take 50 days to get ships to the Gulf. So clearly there's more than "technical problems" stopping them.

              As if we needed to look more carefully to know that. BP has consistently failed to do what's in its own interest protecting the Gulf from the oil from this rig, just as it has done around the globe. When finding reasons for BP to pollute, the answer that screams to mind is that BP is set up to drill without regard to consequences. And there's no reason to think that has changed yet, even though the consequences have arrived.

              "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

              by DocGonzo on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:03:36 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  here's my thought (0+ / 0-)

                I don't think the chain of bad decisions that led to the accident came from the top. It smells like local management fuckup to me. Of course, they've created conditions within BP where keeping costs down is more important than safety, but that's sort of a philosophy thing, not conscious decisions.

                Just imagine how fucked up the BP bureaucracy must be internally right now. There'll be a manhunt for good scapegoats to feed to politicians and the media, aggressive managers looking to make a name for themselves (sometimes on the bodies of those above them), etc. It's like hot potato with grenades. It's very, very difficult for a company in such a position to make good decisions.

                Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

                by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:22:31 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Circling the Wagons (0+ / 0-)

                  What I expect is that inside BP people are doing their best to just not get noticed. They want to leave BP to some other oil corp that operates basically the same way (though BP looks worst by violations, but there's so few regulations that there's no way to measure). They're not going to be doing anything that makes them look "disloyal". They are circling the wagons while packing their parachutes, to mix a metaphor.

                  But what we're talking about here is whether BP is failing to minimize the oil spewed into the Gulf with all its power or not. It's clear that it's not. Whether it's failing because of it's already screwed up corporate culture or because it's "intentionally" doing so is a fallacious question, because corporations don't have "intent", since they're not people and don't have minds.

                  BP has people running things at all levels who aren't good at their jobs. That much is pretty clear from all angles by now.

                  "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

                  by DocGonzo on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:47:54 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  depends on how you define "good" (0+ / 0-)

                    If my assumption is correct and the primary failure was the local drilling manager, then if it HADN'T blown up, then he would have been "good" at his job - keeping costs down. But it did blow up, and he became very, very bad at his job.

                    Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

                    by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 01:11:35 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  But It Blew Up (0+ / 0-)

                      He was bad at his job because he took an unnecessary risk for a relatively (to the exposure) small possible reward that was the wrong decision.

                      The facts show that he was bad at his job. That he even had the power to make that call shows the people above him are bad at their jobs.

                      Again, there is no room for doubt anymore. We have indisputable proof.

                      "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

                      by DocGonzo on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 01:15:25 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

  •  Tony Hayward to testify before congress (8+ / 0-)

    (AP)Tony Hayward, the embattled CEO of BP, will make his first appearance on Capitol Hill since the catastrophic Gulf oil spill when he testifies before a congressional committee next week.

    Hayward is scheduled to appear at a House Energy and Commerce oversight and investigations subcommittee hearing June 17. The subject of the hearing is the role of BP in the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill.

    Hayward enraged some when he said, "I'd like my life back." He's sure to receive pointed questions from lawmakers about the cause of the accident and the response to it.

    Here we are now Entertain us I feel stupid and contagious

    by Scarce on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:32:11 AM PDT

  •  Is there any leverage to mandate BP close (0+ / 0-)

    the vents

    Afghanistan:Graveyard to empires-It's not just a bumpersticker

    by JML9999 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:32:32 AM PDT

    •  that's not to be mandated (10+ / 0-)

      That's a technical decision, because closing the vents could literally cause the cap to break down.

      The goal isn't "close the vents". The goal is "capture as much oil as possible". I think that can be incentivized by reducing the fine on captured oil, relative to oil that escapes. But you don't want to mandate technical solutions here.

      Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

      by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:37:56 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Might be worthwhile to get a second opinion (0+ / 0-)

        It was a mistake from the gitgo  to leave BP in charge of this. Their financial risks are a guaranteed incentive to lie about the facts.

        Money=speech; every dollar has a right to be heard. The Supremes

        by orson on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:55:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Technical reasons why vents shouldn't be closed (5+ / 0-)
        1. They don't have processing capacity on the surface (they brought up oil at a daily rate of 15K barrels on Monday, which is what their ship can handle)
        1. Closing the vents would increase pressure in the BOP, which may not be structurally sound enough to handle the increase, and then it might blow out somewhere where there is no hope of capturing the flow
        1. They are bringing in another processing ship, but it won't be here for weeks (WTF!?!?!?  It should have been on the way immediately back in what, April, May?)
        1. They have plans to attach pipes lower on the BOP where they were injecting mud before, and suck oil out of them for the second processing ship, which would reduce the pressure at the cap, and maybe allow them to close the vents

        No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

        by steve04 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:09:34 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  What do you think it would achieve? (3+ / 0-)

      Because the reality is that the only effect of closing the vents would be that the oil would be forced underneath the hat instead of through the vents.

      Precisely no additional oil at all would be delivered to the surface, but the cap would be more unstable and more likely to come off if the seas get choppy (and we're pretty much in hurricane season now).

  •  Interesting Point (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ontheleftcoast
    We should always remember the number 1 priority for Oil Companies...money!  Everthing else comes later.
    •  Theft is job #1 for them (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RFK Lives, Funphil, Keninoakland

      Money is just a way to keep score. Remember that oil isn't really their's. It's on property held by the government. They're taking it and turning around and charging us. We need to stop this arrangement and nationalize all the mining of resources. Our this and other disasters are going to play out time and time again with private companies profiting and the public stuck with the clena up.

      Wal*Mart isn't the root of all evil but you can buy the plastic, cadmium-tainted, Chinese knock-off of it there for $4.27

      by ontheleftcoast on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:36:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Take note (0+ / 0-)

      that Halliburton has used Christians to civilize primitive cultures in advance of the arrival of their oil rigs. (from the book Economic Hitman)

      Just like Goldman Sachs is doing God's work, so is Halliburton.

      All those wedge issues all those years had a special purpose in mind. Keep the oilmen in power.

  •  Sen Fraken wrote a book about this (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Friend of the court, speak2me

    "Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them".

    Well, it wasn't about BP per se but it could very well have been. I hope Sen. Fraken gets a chance to put BP in the hot seat sometime in the not too distant future.

    Wal*Mart isn't the root of all evil but you can buy the plastic, cadmium-tainted, Chinese knock-off of it there for $4.27

    by ontheleftcoast on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:33:29 AM PDT

  •  The govt should say the (5+ / 0-)

    flow rate is 100,000+ barrels a day , and make BP provide well flow measurement data if they contest this.

    •  no, they shouldn't (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ctsteve, missliberties, GN1927

      You don't want to give ANY reason they might be able to seriously contest the government's numbers in court.

      Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

      by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:39:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  To contest those numbers they (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        freelunch, Catte Nappe, ZAP210

        have to put up, or shut up. I would be very interested to see what they put up.

        Because, of course, if they knew the flow rate was 25,000 bbl per day back in April, but were telling the government it was 10,000 bbl/day, they are guilty of a felony.

        If they don't dispute the governments numbers, they maximize their fine.

        Rock to the left. Hard place to the right. BP in the middle. Popcorn in my bowl.

        In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

        by blue aardvark on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:42:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  depends (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Catte Nappe, blue aardvark

          We're very much in the world of Rules of Evidence, with the government's best lawyers on one side, and the best corporate lawyers money can buy on the other. I don't pretend to understand that any more than I pretend to understand the chemistry of a rocket to Mars.

          What I DO understand is political urges. Either the Obama administration is interested in punishing BP as effectively as possible, or they are not. Now, there are a whole lot of kossacks who think Obama is just an oil puppet who wants to protect BP from us. That makes very, very little sense. It would mean pretty much everything he's ever done is a lie.

          So if you assume that the Obama administration is determined to punish BP effectively, then you can assume that they're doing their best to put together evidence that will hold up in court for maximum fines.

          Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

          by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:46:06 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I think BHO is a politician (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DocGonzo

            Which means that what he does wrt BP will depend not just on his opinions in the great "government versus corporations" battle, but on how he thinks going after BP will play in the media, and with donors, and with members of Congress that he needs to pass cap and trade or Wall Street reform or whatever.

            It's not some mystical 11-D chess. It's something every politician does. How will doing this help me, and hurt me, with all the various factors that affect my personal power?

            In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

            by blue aardvark on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:50:25 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I don't disagree (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mr crabby

              But I fail to see ANY upside for Obama by defending BP instead of stabbing them a half-dozen times and throwing the bleeding carcass to the sharks. The public wants blood, wants vengeance. He could do everything in his legal power to wreck BP and suffer almost no political blowback for it that I can see.

              This also shows how empty all the "Obama is BP's puppet" posts are. WHY would he do that?

              Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

              by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:58:55 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  It really boils down to the courts (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Orbital Mind Control Lasers

        The right detest 'trail lawyers', but uses court and judges to skirt penalties all the time.

        We should be glad that Obamas response is that of a measured constitutional scholar.

      •  Of course they are going to contest the numbers (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Orbital Mind Control Lasers

        One side starts ridiculously high, the other starts ridiculously low, lawyers and experts submit bills for years on end and finally both sides settle somewhere in the middle.

        BP Changed Everything

        by George on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:48:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  so make the numbers hard to contest (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Nice Ogre

          With the cap in place, it's MUCH easier to get solid rate numbers than it was before. Those vents aren't uncontrolled, and pressure is even through the system. They can calculate the amount escaping through the vents from the amount being captured with a high degree of precision.

          By not just pulling numbers out of their asses, the Obama administration lawyers are making it tougher for BP to "negotiate" the numbers. And by repeatedly publishing numbers that are demonstrably dishonest, BP is making their own case worse.

          I know that Obama's cool head aggravates a lot of people on the left, but it does pay off.

          Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

          by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:52:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Agree to an extent (0+ / 0-)

            The Gov estimate should come from somewhere besides an ass, but the available data is the same regardless of the first claim. Lead with the highest estimate that can be found on dkos and work down from there.

            BP Changed Everything

            by George on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:02:09 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Exactly (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ctsteve

      Do the worst-case calculation, and make BP supply independently verifiable data to reduce that.

      In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

      by blue aardvark on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:40:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Once it is capped (0+ / 0-)

        We will be able to tell what the free-flow rate was.

        The US Senate is begging to be abolished. Let's fulfill its request.

        by freelunch on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:53:55 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  At a minimum (0+ / 0-)

          we'll know the mixture of natural gas and oil.

          I would not be at all surprised if BP wants to wait until the pressure relief wells are in place before closing the vents. Just to make the math harder.

          In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

          by blue aardvark on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:00:59 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Is that right? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          freelunch

          I'm no expert, but it seems to me like the free-flow rate would have been altered by every change they've tried to make including capping the leak.

          Of course, the fact that they are able to bring up 15,000 barrels per day through the cap while still gushing oil out of the vents would indicate to me that the original BP estimates of 5000 or 10,000 barrels per day were ridiculously low.  

  •  Now does anybody understand why BP is (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    erratic

    satisfied with what oil they can process on-site, rather than what they can haul away for off-site processing? This entire discussion has thus far been framed by what BP can refine on-site, not what can be moved off-site. Why aren't there tankers lined up to haul away raw product?

  •  This is not only a critical moment (4+ / 0-)

    in the environmental disaster sense (clearly all important), but it's also a critical moment in the Americans vs. Corporations war.

    It'll be very telling to see who stands where, and who has our backs over their corporate masters' interests.

    A man who views the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life. --Muhammad Ali

    by TheBlaz on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:36:52 AM PDT

  •  Viscid fluid flow (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PsychoSavannah, orson

    Depends on relative pressures, cross sectional area of the pipe, Reynolds number of the fluid, and not much else.

    The unknowns here are the effective cross sectional area of the damaged pipe, and the proportion of the flow that was natural gas as opposed to oil.

    If I'm litigating this for the government (IANAL), I'd go in and assume they had pure oil and a maximum flow rate through the pipe, and make BP supply accurate, verifiable data regarding the proportion of natural gas and how tight the choke points were in the pipe.

    In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

    by blue aardvark on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:37:55 AM PDT

  •  Sounds reasonable. (0+ / 0-)

    Tony Whatshisname head of BP should be put in a Peruvian prison cell with Joran Van Der Sloot  for a long long time.

  •  Goldman Sachs downgrades BP (2+ / 0-)

    NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- Goldman Sachs on Monday downgraded BP PLC quotescomstock/13*!bp/quotes/nls/bp  (BP  34.42, 2.34, 6.37%)  to neutral from buy on the company's continuing struggle with its Gulf of Mexico oil spill. "After incorporating potential costs to BP, we believe the shares no longer provide materially more potential upside than the median for the sector," Goldman Sachs analysts said.

    http://www.marketwatch.com/...

    This is a very big deal. If one of the most profitable companies on the planet might not be able to generate a profit in the near future then it's future becomes very much in doubt, at least restructuring of some kind.

    Here we are now Entertain us I feel stupid and contagious

    by Scarce on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:38:27 AM PDT

    •  they will change the name then (0+ / 0-)

      move with no forwarding address.

    •  Not Quite "No Profit" (0+ / 0-)

      Goldman Sachs' analysis said

      the shares no longer provide materially more potential upside than the median for the sector

      That doesn't mean "no profit for BP". That means that other stocks are a better deal than BP in the short term, which is the basis on which GS advises its clients in investment. Profits are related to stock price, but people buy and sell BP for more than the dividends: like most stocks, they buy to sell the stock at a higher price later. However, if GS thought BP stocks were going to pay no dividend and have no profits, while failing to increase in sale price, GS would probably recommend selling now. Though GS is crooked enough that it might just be easing the bad news into the market, so the selloff isn't quite as abrupt, and more sensitive investors can start selling now ahead of the rush that lowers stock prices.

      "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

      by DocGonzo on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:42:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  now THAT . . . . (0+ / 0-)

      "After incorporating potential costs to BP, we believe the shares no longer provide materially more potential upside than the median for the sector," Goldman Sachs analysts said.

      could turn out to be the understatement of the millenium.

  •  Hello (0+ / 0-)

    The teenage angst of the media acting like a rejected lover due to lack of emotional display by President....... is a great big fucking sideshow.

    BP doesn't want other oil co tankers cleaning up the Gulf sucking up BP's copyrights to the profits.

    BP is playing games.

    The economic model is you give a rig commander x amount of dollars to work with and drive them to come in under budget and ahead of schedule. That is why the workers cut corners.

  •  This is exactly what I wanted to read today (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Celtic Pugilist

    How on this planet can we understand this and the administration not see what is so obvious?

    Whatever BP says or does is for BP. No other reason.

    Not to throw shoes is the crime. Not to be outraged is the crime.

    by the girl on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:39:36 AM PDT

  •  Close the vents, and instead of trying to capture (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    orson

    what comes out at the surface, let it spill out so it can be measured, then return to the current procdure.

    A bigger question is:

    Why the fuck is the Obama administration allowing BP to continue to call the shots, when in every case so far they have chosen the path that is in their own interest, not that of the Gulf, and the people and animals that rely on it?

    Why does BP continue to remain in charge of the situation?

    •  if BP was in charge (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hester, GN1927, Inventor, Sun dog, sullivanst

      There'd be one relief well, not two. Obama forced that on them.

      Can we please stop saying Obama is letting BP do whatever they want?

      Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

      by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:41:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Rachel Maddow had a piece on booms (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        hester, defluxion10, vacantlook, orson, annieli

        last night. She showed again and again how the cleanup is a clusterfuck. We can see it.

        No pay for workers, oil all over the place, dispersants that are harmful and are sucking the oxygen out of the water, there is still much to do to hold BP accountable.

        The way I determine whether or not to trust someone who did me wrong is to determine the level of remorse and redemption they seek from me.

        I see no remorse, no attempt at redemption. I see bullshit.

        Not to throw shoes is the crime. Not to be outraged is the crime.

        by the girl on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:44:10 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  This isn't "Independence Day", (4+ / 0-)

      where the government has some super-secret deep-sea sub hidden away under a mountain that can be sprung into action when things look their most dire.

      This is reality.  And the reality is there is no way to stop this leak, with the damage that was done, outside of relief wells.  It takes time to drill that far down and we will have to wait until one of those kill bores is done to completely stop the leaking oil.

      There is a lot to this, as i have learned.  The gas mixed with the oil is a huge explosion concern, and the pressure the oil and gas is under is monumental.

    •  measuring is already viable (0+ / 0-)

      The vents are well-known and well-controlled for flow rate, and pressures are even between vents and pipe. Measure what's going up the pipe, and you can measure what's coming out of the vents. It's pretty basic, actually.

      Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

      by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:53:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  And did they make it much worse (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    steve04, vacantlook, PsychoSavannah

    even AFTER accounting for the oil they're collecting now?

    At least one expert, Ira Leifer, who is part of a government team charged with estimating the flow rate, is convinced that the operation has made the leak worse, perhaps far worse than the 20 percent increase that government officials warned might occur when the riser was cut.

    Dr. Leifer said in an interview on Monday that judging from the video, cutting the pipe might have led to a several-fold increase in the flow rate from the well.

    "The well pipe clearly is fluxing way more than it did before," said Dr. Leifer, a researcher at the University of California, Santa Barbara. "By way more, I don’t mean 20 percent, I mean multiple factors."

    link

    "I think a basic principle of our Constitution is nobody above the law" -Obama

    by heart of a quince on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:39:54 AM PDT

    •  that was a known problem (0+ / 0-)

      A clean-cut pipe was going to flow more than the kinked, bent pipe.

      But think of all the people here and elsewhere howling "WE MUST DO SOMETHING! THIS IS SOMETHING, THEREFORE WE MUST TO THIS!" and demanding something like the cap. Politically, it's better for BP to put the cap in place, even if it makes the situation worse.

      Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

      by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:11:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Question isn't whether cutting would increase q (0+ / 0-)

        The question is why the 20% was allowed to be floated without much questioning.

        I agree that BP is treating this as a legal, financial, and PR disaster rather than an environmental disaster. However, I don't think your characterization of the complaints is very fair.

        "I think a basic principle of our Constitution is nobody above the law" -Obama

        by heart of a quince on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:15:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Another illustration of BP conflict of interest. (0+ / 0-)

    This is the reason the Feds should have taken control of this from the beginning.  Obvious conflicts of interest here.  The environment will pay the price.

  •  If this is ever proven (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GN1927, DocGonzo, the girl, Nice Ogre

    If BP is playing games here with capturing the oil, the administration needs to put it to an end, and they need to do it now.

    Some people damn well better go to jail.  

    "Drill baby drill" was one of the slogans for the last campaign. It would be insane if we didn't make it a slogan for the next.

    by Sun dog on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:41:16 AM PDT

  •  70 Dollars Per Barrel (0+ / 0-)

    That's what a barrel of oil has been selling lately. So if they bring up all of the oil, they will only lose $4230 per barrel. If this goes on for 100 days, that's a loss of 42,300,000,000 dollars. If it goes as long as Ixpoc oil disaster, then they will lose about $120,000,000,000.

    Actually, I guess if I were the greedy CEO of BP, I'd still order the company to keep spilling the oil in the water. That would save the company over a 100 day period of $38,700,000,000.

    •  You're an idiot. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Inventor, sullivanst

      Oil they bring up will not be spilled, so it won't be fined at $4300 per barrel.  They have every incentive to capture as much as they can.

      No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

      by steve04 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:59:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Same To You (0+ / 0-)

        I can't believe you believe BP.

        •  Let Me Keep It Simple (0+ / 0-)

          How much oil BP wants to capture is a profit maximization problem. Their dilemna is, the more they capture the less they will be fined for future spills, but the more they capture, the higher the flow rate estimate will be, and thus, the higher the fines will be for what's already spilled.

          BP probably has the best estimate on what the oil flow rate into the Gulf really is. Thus, the greater their estimate is over the government's estimate, the greater incentive they will have to hide the true flow rate and capture less oil. The longer they believe it will take to cap the well, the greater incentive they may have to stop the gusher completely. However, the longer they believe it will take to completely siphon all the oil from the gusher, the greater incentive to hide the true flow rate.  The final variable is that they must calculate the odds that they can hide the true flow rate until the oil well is capped.

          Thus, I don't think its such an idiotic idea that BP may want to hide the true flow rate of the oil by not extracting all the oil that they can.

      •  See My "Let Me Keep It Simple Comment" (0+ / 0-)

        I accidently replied to my own comment, rather than yours.

  •  what fishgrease said... (5+ / 0-)

    the ship on the surface capturing the oil is too small but BP don't want to admit it's them restricting the flow. I did read they're bringing up a larger ship so maybe it'll do more.

    •  I think he also said.. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      steve04, PsychoSavannah

      ..that closing all the vents might risk blowing the cap off the well; or it might have been somebody else.

      Also, the oil that is not being sucked to the surface is flowing out and preventing water from getting in and causing a methane hydrate problem. I'm sure he said that.

      I saw on CNN, I believe, that BP is going to go to another system that will permit
      a better seal and which will also allow for disconnects and an underwater storage system in case of tropical storms approaching.

      I don't know how true that last part is, though.

      Still, I think they could have put on a better sealed device by now, there is still some good sealing surface to work with on the lateral (cylindrical) part of the flanges below the cut off riser.

      Moderation in most things. Except Reactors. IFR forever!

      by billmosby on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:47:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  At the moment, they can't close the vents (2+ / 0-)

        For the reasons you said, and others.

        1. They don't have processing capacity on the surface (they brought up oil at a daily rate of 15K barrels on Monday, which is what their ship can handle)
        1. Closing the vents would increase pressure in the BOP, which may not be structurally sound enough to handle the increase, and then it might blow out somewhere where there is no hope of capturing the flow
        1. They are bringing in another processing ship, but it won't be here for weeks (WTF!?!?!?  It should have been on the way immediately back in what, April, May?)
        1. They have plans to attach pipes lower on the BOP where they were injecting mud before, and suck oil out of them for the second processing ship, which would reduce the pressure at the cap, and maybe allow them to close the vents

        No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

        by steve04 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:02:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The current configuration (7+ / 0-)

    is unable to capture all the oil, period.

    The maximum rated capacity, at normal operating pressure, of the drillship Enterprise is 15,000 BOPD.

    As Fishgrease would tell you, there's simply no way that they can get the oil at anywhere near normal operating pressure. As a result, there's no way they can get 15,000 BOPD processed. He'd tell you it's very impressive they got the 11,000 they're claiming.

    And all that's with the valves open. Closing the valves would not allow any more oil up the pipe, the ship at the top is taking all the oil it can handle.

    However, the long-term containment strategy, which we're being told will be deployed next month, includes a larger cap which should come much closer to capturing all the oil, and will be connected at the top to regular production ships, rather than a multi-purpose drilling ship, which will be able to take more of the oil.

    If there's no definitive measurement of the oil, the government appears to have made clear to BP that they will be giving an official estimate that BP will not like.

    •  Wouldn't it be a good idea (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sullivanst, Celtic Pugilist

      in such a heavily exploited and environmentally sensitive area as the GOM, to have a disaster containment team on permanent standby, with all the necessary equipment on hand? Any company that wants to drill there could be required to post a bond and contribute to a disaster preparedness team. It also seems like a government mandated redesign of blowout preventers is in order. If the feds can require us to use toasters that are so safe as to be barely functional, they ought to be able to regulate the gear the oil companies put on the ocean floor.

      Money=speech; every dollar has a right to be heard. The Supremes

      by orson on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:22:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The problem wasn't entirely with the design (0+ / 0-)

        of the BOP.

        The problem was that BP knew it wasn't functioning properly, and didn't give a shit.

        That's part of why there's good reason to believe they will be prosecuted for criminal neglect.

        Also, the MMS was still full of Bush-Cheney cronies and not a functioning regulatory and oversight agency, so inspections either weren't happening or were not being carried out properly or the followup for defects found was toothless. I don't know whether the BOP in question was inspected, but given the number of flaws BP knew about, it seems unlikely it would've passed even an industry-favorable inspection.

        Oil companies are already required to pay into the liability fund. I'd be in favor of augmenting that with a disaster preparedness team.

        Although, BP's categorical exception for the environmental impact studies included them asserting, and MMS accepting going back into the Bush days, that they had a plan in place to handle the worst case scenario. They very clearly had no such thing, nor anything remotely approximating it.

    •  What a Fool (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Celtic Pugilist

      You really believe BP? BP has every incentive to low ball the amount of oil gushing out into the Gulf. You have to be suspicious that BP will never capture more than 20% of the Government official low estimate of the oil flow, which is currently 12,000 barrels a day. Thus, 14,000 barrels is about the most they will capture until the government ups its estimate. I predict BP will drag its feet in capturing more oil until the well is plugged or the government makes an oil flow estimate more than their own private estimates.

      •  I didn't get any of my info from BP (0+ / 0-)

        You're just a contrarian idiot.

        "Never capture more than 20% of the official low estimate?"

        You simply haven't the slightest clue what the fuck you're talking about, my friend. Your facts are 180 degrees from the truth. When the official government estimate for the total leak was 5,000 BOPD, BP announced they were receiving 5,000 BOPD through the RITT while there were still two other significant leak sites.

        With the official low end of the government estimate at 12,000 BOPD, they announced that they were removing 11,000 BOPD of oil through the cap.

        The drillship at the top of the riser is a drillship, not a production vessel. Its processing capacity is suitable for a drillship performing testing activities. It was never intended to be a production vessel, so it does not have processing capacity for a production role. The explanation about its capacity limits I got from Fishgrease. Industry puff-pieces for the Enterprise-class drillships at the time of launch suggested they have "the ability to test wells flowing at up to 20,000 b/d", so that's close to the numbers we're seeing discussed for processing capacity.

        As for BP's incentives, remember that they will not be fined for oil that they capture, because captured oil is not spilled oil. The only way it would make sense for them not to capture would be if they had a significant degree of confidence that they could make an estimate of loss stick in court that was more below the the actual loss than they could collect. That's a huge risk, especially as they've established a baseline for calculation of what's still escaping by capturing what they have.

        •  You Just Don't Get It My Friend (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Celtic Pugilist

          Of course BP is not going to be fined for the captured oil. But once they capture all of the oil gushing out of the well, the public will have a good estimate on how much oil really spilled into the Gulf. If BP has been grossly underestimating the amount of oil gushing out into the gulf they may have the incentive to keep the amount secret to keep their fines lower. This will depend on how fast they can cap the oil well, and how much they have been underestimating the amount of oil gushing out. As I've been saying, their incentive is to cap the oil well before they have to take measures that will reveal the true amount of oil spilled.

          You are the type of person that makes DKOS look embarrassing. I don't appreciate your namecalling (or recommending comments that call me an idiot), rudeness and you act like a jerk. I consider you a troll.

          •  I get it fine (0+ / 0-)

            you're drawing false conclusions from false assumptions. That's what's an embarrassment to the site. If name-calling is also an embarrassment to the site, you're still an embarrassment, because you're the one that started the name-calling in this thread.

            Your premise is fundamentally flawed. What affects BP's profit motive is not what the estimate is today. It's what the estimate will be when the fine is assessed. BP has to contend not just with the possibility that they end up with near-complete containment before the kill bores plug the well from below, and the oil can be measured directly (and there's the threat of discretionary debarment hanging over their heads, which can be used to ensure that every effort is made to obtain near-complete containment). There's also the issue that the oil spilled can be measured by satellite and by sampling of the underwater plumes, efforts that are ongoing. There's also the high-def video footage from multiple cameras after the riser was cut, when there was a single leak point. There's also the high-def video footage from multiple cameras after the cap has been installed and a known quantity of oil is being delivered to the surface, with that quantity varying day by day so comparison can be made between the oil escaping when no oil is delivered up the pipe, 6,000 BOPD is being delivered up the pipe, or 11,000 BOPD is being delivered up the pipe.

            BP would have to have absolute confidence that the final estimate of the leak will be low-ball to make it in any way profitable to spill oil. There are simply too many ways already available to estimate the leak for them to have that confidence. There's also the small problem that because BP has not measured the flow, BP does not know the flow themselves. As a result, they don't know how much of a low-ball the current estimate is, nor how much they're currently actually spilling. It's truly ridiculous to suggest that they'd avoid capturing oil they could, thus knowing for sure they'd avoid fines on that oil, based on some unknown and unknowable hope that they might possibility be able to avoid fines on some of the oil already spilled. This is especially true since they also don't know how much oil they would have to keep intentionally spilling into the future to maintain this pie-in-the-sky hope of fine avoidance.

            Inherent to the notion that they're intentionally spilling oil is the assumption that they have the capacity to capture more oil than they are currently doing. This has been discussed at length elsewhere on this site, and the firm conclusion is that it's actually very impressive that they're managing to capture as much as they are with their current surface resources.

            Notice also that I say "plug" above rather than "cap". Capping this well would be extremely dangerous. It's compromised, there's a strong chance capping it would collapse the wellhead, causing an uncontrollable, uncontainable leak. That's why they're no longer attempting to cap. Plugging will take at least 'til August, if there are no storms in the GOM, and the first attempt to intercept is successful.

  •  Dedicated BP Video Feed (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PsychoSavannah

    For those interested, Frequency has been cultivating a video feed of all relevant BP Oil Spill developments.  It can be found here:

    http://www.frequency.com/...

    Watching the streaming video makes it all too clear that the siphoning efforts are a drop in the proverbial bucket.

  •  BP will go bankrupt and the liability spun off (3+ / 0-)

    into a holding company cesspool that will be skimmed until nothing is left for the settlement of the lawsuits 25 years from now.  Cynical? Yes.  I'm not the only one.  Digby has an item up.

    Given the plunge in BP’s share price — the company has lost more than a third of its value since Deepwater Horizon blew — some bankers and analysts say BP is starting to look like takeover bait. The question is, who would buy BP, given its enormous potential liabilities?

    Shell and Exxon Mobil are both said to be licking their chops. And already, flinty legal minds are dreaming up scenarios in which BP would file a prepackaged bankruptcy and separate the costs of the cleanup — and potentially billions of dollars in legal claims — into a separate corporate entity.

    Hamdan v. Rumsfeld = the Constitution travels with the flag

    by sailmaker on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:45:31 AM PDT

  •  Why can't the Government take what BP (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    orson

    has in the Gulf and elsewhere and put another Oil Company's Oil and their knowhow in charge since every-time someone says "the Government should take over from BP" the answer is The Government doesn't have the Knowhow and Experience to do so only BP does,well BP ain't the only Oil Co. on Earth?.that way the new oil Co.could be protected from any liability since they didn't make the mess and they wouldn't have a reason to hide the Numbers.

    •  How do you make someone take it on? (3+ / 0-)

      No oil company in their right mind would take over this cluster-f***k

      Legalism: strict conformity to the letter of the law rather than its spirit

      by Catte Nappe on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:52:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  nationalization is an option (0+ / 0-)

        But, from what I hear chatting with my British friends, the UK govt has, at least as of now, no political will to bail out BP's ass by buying it--they just got done bailing out their financial giants, and it left an awfully bad taste in everyone's mouth. And even if the UK govt wanted to buy out BP, they'd have to scrape an awful lot to find the money to do it.

        On the other hand, if BP goes under, it will drag the entire Brit economy down with it.  So if BP really ends up against the wall, the govt's attitude may change.

        But the feeling amongst my Brit friends seems to be that the US simply won't force BP into that position, and we'll go easy on the fines.

        •  Unrelated to the original comment, though (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          defluxion10

          The "proposal" was to take over BP's assets, and then have Shell or Exxon or somebody take over the leak and the clean up.

          Legalism: strict conformity to the letter of the law rather than its spirit

          by Catte Nappe on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 01:34:05 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I understand that (0+ / 0-)

            But nationalizing BP and then having the British government take over BOTH the assets and the cleanup, is another possible option.

            Although there doesn't seem to be much enthusiasm in England for bailing out yet another corporate fuckup.

            •  Not to mention (0+ / 0-)

              I really doubt the British government would be any more interested in taking over the clean up than one of the other oil companies would be. Nobody with any sense wants this hot potato - it's all BP's for the duration.

              Legalism: strict conformity to the letter of the law rather than its spirit

              by Catte Nappe on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 02:18:27 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  yep (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Catte Nappe

                Certainly the Queen seems content right now to just let BP twist slowly in the wind.

                That might change if the financial effects of this mess actually drive BP to the wall and present a real chance of it going belly-up----which would be a massive disaster for the Brit economy.

                But as I've said elsewhere, I think the US itself is probably not willing to push BP into that position, and so we will go soft on the fines.

    •  no oil company would take over (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      defluxion10, Catte Nappe

      The moment they take over BP's cleanup operations, they take over BP's liabilities (at least partially) and BP's PR problems.

      We could maybe grant immunity to civil/criminal charges to the new oil company doing the operation, but do you REALLY think that some other oil company, with NO legal consequences, would do a better job?

      Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

      by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:55:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Whyy would we believe anything (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    defluxion10

    BP tells us?

    Money=speech; every dollar has a right to be heard. The Supremes

    by orson on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:46:30 AM PDT

  •  Agree (0+ / 0-)

    If BP is playing games here with capturing the oil, the administration needs to put it to an end, and they need to do it now. Either way, this is a critical -- and perhaps defining -- moment of this crisis, and the administration needs to get it right.

    this needs to get cleared up as soon as possible.  And, dare I write it...I think the US Govt. should then own all the oil that is captured, once things are "under control".  BP should never be able to profit off of this well.  We need the $$ for our beaches, the Gulf and coastal communities.

    http://www.thehamandlegsshow.com

  •  Conspiracy and Obstruction of Justice? nt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annieli
  •  Seeing BP has been lying and trying to (0+ / 0-)

    obfuscate, I think any ruling will have to set a precedent for this kind of deceit. No ethical ruling could ignore BPs's overt attempt to minimize the estimates to save their own asses while the spill itself as wrought so much far-reaching damage. An ethical ruling will have to find a way to make BP account for the size of this spill even though it could  be impossible, thanks to BP's intentional obstruction, to great a reasonably accurate measure of how much oil spilled.

    The question is, can we get an ethical ruling on this?

    -8.50, -7.64 Autism Speaks does not speak for me. I can speak for myself. I am a person, not a disease. I want to be respected, not "cured."

    by croyal on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:54:23 AM PDT

  •  Scientists and techies (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fossil

    can calculate pretty accurately from even the minimal early video what the oil flow rate is and then multiply by days with no straw or cap.  They can add the amount captured plus the amount burned off.  The government can provide their best estimate (on the high side) for penalties.  BP has the burden to prove that it is wrong.

    Sometimes legal procedure and evidence are not rocket science.

  •  If BP brings the oil to the surface (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    steve04, sullivanst
    and gets it on a tanker, then they wouldn't be liable for the $4,300 per barrel charges on that oil since it wasn't spilled.  The only oil they are liable for is the Oil that isn't captured.  In that sense, I would assume BP would want to harvest as much oil as humanly possible.

    My guess is that they either don't have the ability to capture it all or they are basically FUBAR!

    •  You're right. (0+ / 0-)
      1. They don't have processing capacity on the surface (they brought up oil at a daily rate of 15K barrels on Monday, which is what their ship can handle)
      1. Closing the vents would increase pressure in the BOP, which may not be structurally sound enough to handle the increase, and then it might blow out somewhere where there is no hope of capturing the flow
      1. They are bringing in another processing ship, but it won't be here for weeks (WTF!?!?!?  It should have been on the way immediately back in what, April, May?)
      1. They have plans to attach pipes lower on the BOP where they were injecting mud before, and suck oil out of them for the second processing ship, which would reduce the pressure at the cap, and maybe allow them to close the vents

      No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

      by steve04 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:05:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The myth of not knowing. (0+ / 0-)

    The problem is that there is a lot of expertise in geology for just this type of flow calculation, especially with footage of the flow.  Flow from abyssal hydrothermal vents and black smokers is an established calculation that may be applied.

    Wish I knew who to call or that the MSM, with their conacts would bother finding out.

    But then, when studied independently and a value that is a magnitude greater than what BP or our government claims indicates that money is doing the talking and the puppeteer's hand is showing.

    Distrust of authority should be the first civic duty. - Norman Douglas

    by Fossil on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:58:39 AM PDT

  •  Multiple independent methods yield high values (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fossil

    Consider, from back in mid-May (seems like so long ago, doesn't it?):

    Size of Oil Spill Underestimated, Scientists Say

    and

    Gulf Spill Could Be Much Worse Than Believed

    and

    BP / Gulf Oil Spill - How Big Is It?

    All three of these estimation methods yielded much higher flow rates than BP was claiming.  In retrospect, these estimations may turn out to be quite conservative; but that's as it should be, as the people making these estimates are scientists and are understandably cautious about their statements.

    Speaking as a scientist and an engineer, one of the first things that's part of any problem analysis is estimating its size and scope.  We need to know whether we're (let's say) dealing with a garden hose or a fire hose or the outflow of Grand Coulee Dam.  These differences not only cause us to make quantitative changes to our problem-solving approach, but qualitative changes as well: we can't just scale up/down from one to another, we need to change the whole approach.

    It is maddeningly frustrating to me that early (and current) efforts are not laser-focused on getting not just estimates of flow rates, but measurements -- on-site, accurate, real-time, updated measurements.  I'm aware of the difficulties (I was an instrumentation designer in an earlier career) and I'm aware that these numbers are what BP fears most; but someone has got to go and get them, not just to calculate the size of the fine, but in order to give the people working to mitigate and possibly solve this problem a fighting chance.

    It is the business of the future to be dangerous.

    by RiderOnTheStorm on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 10:59:43 AM PDT

  •  Completely different issues (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    steve04, sullivanst

    Yes, BP is absolutely trying to obfuscate the real flow numbers. One can tell from yesterday's technical briefing. They will obfuscate it until they can implement their floating riser and they are obviously capturing all but a very small amount.

    That is a very different issue from the vents. Enterprise is already operating at capacity. Closing the vents will not capture more oil, it will only make losing the cap entirely more likely. Kent Wells is correct when he says the vents probably have mostly gas flowing through them and he is right that it makes it easier to temporarily choke off flow when they have to move the ship.

    The crime is not having more capacity at hand NOW! The guys on the containment team have done an amazing job to collect 15,000 BPD plus 30 MMSCFD of gas and, because we know some of the vents are still closed, this cap could collect more if they had the capacity to process it.

    When the full containment strategy is in place then we'll know what the flow really is. Expect BP to claim flow rates were small before cutting the riser and increased after. Expect them to then claim that the the vast majority of that flow was being captured by this LMRP cap. What they claim next depends on how much the Q4000 collects and how much the larger ship that connects to the floating riser eventually collects.

    The real disconnect here is between the engineers on the containment team who have done an amazing job and the lawyers that are calling the shots in London. The fact that The Containment team has deployed technology that is ahead of the resources given them is absolutely inexcusable.

    It's not the vents, it's the rate.

    "Who is John Galt?" A two dimensional character in a third rate novel written by Alan Greenspan's dominatrix.

    by Inventor on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:02:19 AM PDT

    •  I can't wrap my mind around the 15K ship limit (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Inventor, melfunction

      Why on earth is there only one processing ship above this well?  This is what, 7 weeks into this disaster?  The ship on its way from the North Sea should have been on its way from day 1.

      No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

      by steve04 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:07:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's what's pissing me off... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        steve04, melfunction

        There's one "on the way".

        On the FREAKING WAY!!!!! Arrrrghhh!!!

        And they'll blame the engineers.

        "Who is John Galt?" A two dimensional character in a third rate novel written by Alan Greenspan's dominatrix.

        by Inventor on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:15:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  ARRRRRRRRGGGGHHHHHHH!!!!! (0+ / 0-)

          Fucking impossible to believe.  I can just see a corporate lawyer saying, "If we send another processing ship, it will imply we think the flow is above 5K barrels per day, so we shouldn't do that."

          There is no way many engineers and high level executives who used to be engineers believed the 5K per day limit, but they must have been overruled.

          No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

          by steve04 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:19:50 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  that doesn't make sense (0+ / 0-)

            They can't hide the rate of flow forever. And once we have good numbers (they're pretty good now), we'll know it's ALWAYS flowed that much. So why continue the charade?

            Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

            by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:22:26 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  They thought they could kill the well (0+ / 0-)

              They wouldn't have wasted time injecting mud and the "junk" that was supposed to plug the various leaks if they didn't think it had a reasonable chance of success.  If they could have killed the well with that operation, the flow rate wouldn't have been measured accurately and we'd all be having a very different discussion right now.

              No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

              by steve04 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:31:02 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  good point (0+ / 0-)

                But a coverup a few weeks ago was one thing, continuing to coverup today is quite another.  I don't think a coverup today is going to help them in either the public eye or in court.

                Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

                by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 01:40:52 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

      •  because two ships makes complex connections (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        erratic

        They have pipe connected for a MILE, carrying a LOT of oil. You try to split that, and you risk tensions between ships ripping the pipe apart or dislodging the cap.

        And the oil coming out of the pipe can't just be transferred over without processing. It's FULL of natural gas - the stuff that blew up Deepwater Horizon. The gas needs vented and burned so the oil can be transferred safely.

        Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

        by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:21:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Which is exactly why, just like "Jaws" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          freelunch

          they need to get a bigger boat.

          I'll repeat, the collection technology is new, the technology aboard the Enterprise, at least downstream of the topsides choke, is not new. It is just too small.

          Even if they had to disconnect and reconnect with a bigger ship and an identical package underwater, they should have that capability on hand.

          The amazing engineering design and development that has been accomplished (ability to collect >15,000 BPD oil and >30 MMSCFD gas from a deepwater subsea blowout) should not be ahead of the resources to process their output.

          "Who is John Galt?" A two dimensional character in a third rate novel written by Alan Greenspan's dominatrix.

          by Inventor on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:34:59 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  are there bigger boats? (0+ / 0-)

            At least, bigger boats that can be hooked up to this jury-rigged mess? Seems to me the next "bigger boat" would be a full-tilt production platform, which wouldn't be easy to place.

            Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

            by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:37:20 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  One is on the way (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              steve04

              from the N. Sea

              "Who is John Galt?" A two dimensional character in a third rate novel written by Alan Greenspan's dominatrix.

              by Inventor on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:13:00 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  and how long does that take? (0+ / 0-)

                I assume a full-tilt production platform capable of doing more than the current platform can would have been in use, since they cost hundreds of thousands a day to operate. That means whatever well it was on had to be shut down, and everything disconnected. This isn't like taking your car out of the garage. And those ships aren't designed to move fast, either... they're designed to stay still. I'm not surprised it would take weeks to get it in place, even if they started right away.

                Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

                by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:25:27 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  Splitting the flow is trivial... (0+ / 0-)

          ...compared to other issues.  The current plan is to pull oil out of the Q4000 ports that were used to inject mud a week or two ago, which are below the cap.  Alternatively, a Y-shaped cap could be used to split the flow, which it seems to me would be easier to attach securely than a single-ended cap.

          The fact that the pipe is a mile long before it reaches the surface actually gives a fair amount of play to the situation such that the ships up top don't have to hold their positions perfectly still.

          No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

          by steve04 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:29:18 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Racecars (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        steve04

        The drillship currently in place above the wellhead is very specialised in that it has the capability to separate out oil and gas fed up its riser. It also has thrusters that allow it to remain on station, keeping it positioned accurately above the wellhead. It's not a common feature of drillships generally and they're quite rare -- this ship is the equivalent of an Indy 500 racer with a backhoe attached.

        Most production platforms with the same kind of oil separation and processing gear on-board as the drillship in question are usually fixed hard to a wellhead by a solid pipe connection, something which can't be done in this situation. The 5,000 bbd processing ship that's coming to provide extra capability is going to be fed by connections to sideports on the wellhead (the so-called Q4000 ports) and not the cap so it doesn't need the same sort of positioning accuracy as the drillship does.

        •  The thrusters are that unique? (0+ / 0-)

          Standard intra-city ferries have thrusters to control their positioning, and have for decades.  I can't imagine production ships don't all have them as standard features.

          Regardless, there's a ship on its way from the North Sea that they think they can use, but it isn't here yet.  I'm not sure that there is any acceptable excuse for why that ship isn't already in the gulf.

          No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

          by steve04 on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:26:11 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Cutting corners (0+ / 0-)

            Those ferries don't have five thousand feet of 6" steel tubing hanging out their middle, keeping a cap fitted over a spigot a mile below them to within a couple of inches accuracy while the escaping oil and gas tries to blow the cap to hell and gone at a pressure of several thousand psi. That requires something a bit more sophisticated than a car ferry's thrusters. There aren't that many vessels anywhere that can do that AND accept and process raw crude in any quantity.

            As for the ship coming from the North Sea, you are aware that it was probably doing something important where it was? It would take several days for it to disconnect itself from the well it was working on; trying to hurry the process and shut that well down quicker could have resulted in another Deepwater Horizon event, this time in the North Sea.

            Right now there are dozens of ships and rigs and thousands of workers sitting directly above the runaway wellhead in the Gulf. It has already sunk a large drilling rig and killed eleven people, apparently because someone was in a hurry and wanted to cut corners. The people working on this project don't want to join them simply because other folks are impatient.

            •  Heard more info in Thad Allen's briefing (0+ / 0-)

              The ship coming from the North Sea is not a production ship; it's a very large tanker shuttle ship, with high precision GPS/thrusters which will facilitate safer transfers from the existing production ship.  The existing 15K production ship is getting upgraded to 18K, the original ship on the scene is getting outfitted with equipment to produce/flare 10K barrels.  That might just be enough capacity.  That's the short term plan.

              He alluded to a better long-term plan with more production capacity that didn't involve flaring of oil, but didn't go into detail and the stupid journalists asking questions weren't able to differentiate between his statements.  One of them seemed to think he had a gotcha that the ship flaring the oil off was a bad outcome.  It's not ideal (capturing and refining the oil is the best outcome), but give me a break--keeping it out of the water is a great outcome any way you measure it.  If it's all that is possible in the time frame from now to 4 weeks out, then who cares?

              No on Prop 8::Sometimes I get to hitch a ride on the Democratic Bus--they let me stand on the back bumper.

              by steve04 on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 01:37:03 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Ha Ha Ha (0+ / 0-)

      You really think BP is voluntarily going to make known the flow rate? They won't give out the flow rate until the benefits of giving it out is greater than conceiling it. On the bright side, it may provide incentive for BP to quickly cap the oil well before all of the oil can be captured. The prospect of a $4,300 fine per barrel is great incentive for BP to drag its feet on any activity that will give an accurate measurement of the flow rate. That's why BP officials have to be threatened with criminal prosecution and personal liability. They have no incentive to cooperate, with the exception that their ruined reputation hurts demand for their product. But since their reputation is already in the gutter, I doubt that their behavior will improve.

  •  Obama must write off BP (0+ / 0-)
    It's time that the people in charge treat BP and their unfortunate shareholders as a writeoff so as to stop concerning themselves with the company's survival.

    Sorry, BP, but you hit the anti-Lotto.  It was going to happen to you or Exxon-Mobil or Chevron at some point.  Sorry, but you drew the short straw and you're done.

    Once that's been accepted, we can move on by conscripting BP and its employees to do perform the tasks that need to be accomplished for wages appropriate for government work.  The rest can be sorted out later.

    YOU grab a mop. I'm gonna invent a car that runs on hate.

    by The Termite on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:05:46 AM PDT

  •  The Administration Agrees with BP (0+ / 0-)

    Here's a question that is bothering me: why are BP and the Federal government telling  two different stories about the importance of closing the vents on the containment cap over BP's leaking well?

    Where is the administration telling a story that it's important to close the vents to get an accurate count on the amount of oil spewing from the well? All I've seen is Obama agreeing with BP that "counting the gallons isn't relevant to capping the well, so it's not important, and is a distraction". And I don't see the administration either ordering BP to close the vents or otherwise present an accurate count instead of their obvious lies.

    I see only agreement of Obama's administration with BP. Except once every couple weeks when Obama says something that doesn't act with official power about how he's mad about the spill. Which doesn't count, since it doesn't change anything.

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

    by DocGonzo on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:19:24 AM PDT

    •  you don't need to close the vents to measure (0+ / 0-)

      We know how much can escape from the vents relative to the pipe already. That's basic engineering stuff, although basic engineering is as alien as Sanskrit to the average kossack.

      Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

      by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:23:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The Average Kossack (0+ / 0-)

        If you're going to reply to my comment, why don't you say something about it's actual and only subject: where has the administration told a different story from BP, as this DKos story says it has.

        It's annoying that you constantly reply to comments by changing the subject, sometimes to nothing but a straw man, gussied up with attacks on "some" who aren't in the discussion to defend themselves because you haven't specified who they even are.

        "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

        by DocGonzo on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:06:33 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  and why are you "quoting" Obama? (0+ / 0-)

          You're putting quote marks around things Obama never said.

          I've given examples over and over about Obama actually taking control and doing something active. Sorry if they don't fit your wishful thinking about Obama being a corporate puppet.

          Want my "some"? Look in the mirror.

          Things are often more difficult in practice than they seem when you're writing about them on the Internet.

          by Orbital Mind Control Lasers on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 12:27:53 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Paraphrasing vs Straw Men (0+ / 0-)

            Because writing style means that even paraphrases are put into quotes when attributing them to someone other than the writer. Do you disagree with the accuracy of the paraphrase? I could quote the exact language from Obama's press conference if you want, but that's just hassling me for no reason, since that was his meaning.

            Meanwhile, I didn't say "Obama has done nothing" (see how that works?) as you say I did. That's just another strawman. Like where you say I said that Obama is a "corporate puppet", which I did not say.

            You're really quite bad at arguing when you're going to whine about my quoting a paraphrase while you're arguing with straw men that I never said at all.

            "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

            by DocGonzo on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 01:02:38 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Ouch. That's one I didn't think about, but.... (0+ / 0-)

    For penalty purposes, wouldn't oil flowing into that line be oil that didn't make it into the water?

    I would expect that to reduce, not increase penalties.

    And -- the current flow rate isn't necessarily what the flow rate has been all along.

    They cut off that pipe a move that everybody expected to increase the flow rate substantially and it did.

    I expect a nasty courthouse brawl as it is, but keeping more oil out of the water seems more likely to limit damages in the long run than letting it spew.

    I realize that it's harder to sell a jury on the collected science and testimony of experts than on cold, hard measurements, but BP has a problem, too. Penalties for spilled oil are big, but so are damages to the environment and so are clean-up cost and so is the bitter taste likely to be left in the jury pool's collective mouth.

    If they're really trying to game the penalties, somebody isn't thinking clearly.

    Free speech? Yeah, I've heard of that. Have you?

    by dinotrac on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:20:40 AM PDT

  •  Hey! Folks along the beaches! (0+ / 0-)

    Get a lawyer and arrest the barges of recovered oil whenthey enter port.

    If it's worth $1,000,000 a day when sold (per NPR) it's time to get your asset-seizure game on.

  •  there will be a so-called "head loss" as the oil (0+ / 0-)

    flows up the pipe to the surface, which in essence may lower the flow at that point vs at the leak although there is also a huge pressure differential between the two as well, not sure which one dominates.  The point is that it is not a foregone conclusion that what comes out at the surface is the same as what is coming out at the leak, although it certainly would be a more straightforward calculation that BP would have a hard time arguing about.

  •  thanks again Jed! (0+ / 0-)

    If BP is playing games here with capturing the oil, the administration needs to put it to an end, and they need to do it now. Either way, this is a critical -- and perhaps defining -- moment of this crisis, and the administration needs to get it right.

    Abso-fucking-lutely!

    It is such a massive conflict of interest for BP to have anything to do with making these decisions.

    and it sets up so weird. The govt says one thing, BP another. Who is in charge? I can understand if two different equal partners say different things. But this should be a coordinated response to a major disaster. and no two equal parties.

    BP is again not acting in the public's interest. The response should act in the public's interest.

    An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

    by mightymouse on Tue Jun 08, 2010 at 11:33:38 AM PDT

  •  The feds estimation is due today (0+ / 0-)

    This will be the estimation the administration is responsible for. Some people have fallen in love with the recovery effort but the larger processing rig is just on its way from the North Sea and that's nuts.

  •  I thought it was more a matter of engineering ... (0+ / 0-)

    ... and how much pressure the pipeline/containment vessel can withstand when the vents are closed. My admittedly limited understanding of the situation is that they want to close the vents slowly so they can track how much stress the hardware could take. At the same time, I thought part of the problem in determining how much oil was leaking out is that the petroleum is suffused with a lot of gas, and it can be difficult to measure how much of the emission is gas and how much is oil.

    Unlike many, I have no problem saying this is far outside my area of expertise so I have no idea why we can't get an accurate estimate of how much oil is still being lost into the Gulf. In the end, however, I suspect we will get a reasonably accurate number and it will be far more than BP is telling us.

  •  Nice conspiracy theory but... (0+ / 0-)

    The system was only setup to process about 500,000 gallons per day, which is about what it's recovering now.   If all the vents were closed, pressure would spike, and more oil would leak out the bottom, possibly unstabilizing the whole cap.  The riser pipe can only handle so much flow.

    This is just another example of piss poor engineering...  they didn't build this thing robust enough to handle all the oil flowing, because they've never really bothered to quantify all the oil flowing.  The went with the low number, and only built the system to handle that.  

    Really inexcusable.   Anything you try to solve an engineering problem, you have to quantify your 'load', and design accordingly.

  •  For BP to be at the center of (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Celtic Pugilist

    measuring, calculating, or divining anything to do with the flowrate is like giving BP a license to steal from the rest of us.

    I'd like to have BP's perogative on my next visit to the ATM.  Wouldn't you?  Just let me guesstimate the flowrate out of the cash dispenser for a little while.

    Trust me.

    I guarantee I'll steal alot less than BP is, by a factor of, say, 1,000?

    Ain't gonna happen, I know, because unlike BP, I don't have the Big-Boy Pants(tm) Democratic Party working hand over fist to secure my interests.

    Please don't feed the security state.

  •  Try to stay on the sane side, Jed nt (0+ / 0-)
  •  BP Running out the clock (0+ / 0-)

    BP doesn't want anyone to know what the real flow is.  What they want to do is get the relief well to seal off the flow in August.  Then they can argue that the flow was about 1/10th of what it probably is/was the whole time.  They will fight for the lowest number through litigation, and with the conservative leaning courts, will probably get most of what they want after a few decades, just like Exxon did.  

    It's all about running out the clock now.  They have no incentive to be truthful, and nobody is holding their feet to the fire.  

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site