Fake. It should be obvious. Any twelve year old child can look at the volcano of oil and tell you that it will never fit inside a narrow pipe. This is just public relations for the sake of the video feed. President Obama should get into a military posture immediately and remove BP from the Gulf. It is time to start arresting BP employees. This is terrorism. The ideas and execution on display from BP make no logical sense and therefore must represent something beyond what we are being made aware of. Obama needs to ask Congress to convene specifically to authorize a takeover of all BP assets and physical property worldwide by the United States. They need to basically declare a state of war against a multi-national corporation. And if they refuse, then Obama needs to move without them. I’m dead serious in my opinion on this. This is one of the worst attacks ever perpetrated against the United States. The reason I call it an attack is because what started as an accident has changed now into an ongoing effort to confuse observers of the situation and mislead them into thinking that BP is trying to stop the leak. What are other BP people doing around the world right now? What is going on in their banks? Where are they moving their money? Obama is missing the big red ball here and he’s never going to recover. I think it would be wise to very quickly and quietly remove all BP personnel from any offshore oil rigs near the U.S. and shut those rigs down asap. NASA engineers need to be pulled into this emergency and the military must provide logistics and hauling support for the effort to shut the gusher down.
The entire southern and eastern coasts of the U.S. are at severe risk and the volume of oil in the Gulf is far beyond what BP or the government have stated. This company has absolutely no concern whatsoever for what happens to the Gulf waters or the U.S. coasts. It concerns itself only with limiting financial losses and maximizing oil profits. Cleanup and stopping the spill are completely irrelevant to this company. Obama needs to consider what he would do if he wakes up tomorrow and realizes that BP is falsifying the entire operation at the spill site. What would you do, Mr. President?
Further thoughts: Extreme language and extreme action are required in this very odd situation with the Gulf disaster. I think it is only this kind of extreme, left-field thinking that will somehow break the massive inertia that is apparent in our government’s response to a major world emergency. I continue to hear high government officials, including the President, talk about what the government, military, and BP can’t do. Everyone seems to think that there’s not much that can be done that BP isn’t already doing. This thinking is very dangerous and indicates a total collapse of the nation’s intellect and general technical infrastructure. That is not the way the United States expresses itself. We are seeing what is either an anomaly or an indication of failure on a massive and existential scale. The United States that has existed up until recently would never say that it could not plug a hole 5,000 feet below the sea. Never. It would turn all of its technical, military, industrial, and intellectual resources toward filling that hole immediately. I’ve heard reports that President Obama has an IQ of 160. Really? Really? I’m not sure which test was administered to this guy, but it is quite apparent that somebody got paid a little extra to score it.
This country is bleeding out of its asshole. And our President is modeling business casual slacks on the oil-slicked shores of a destroyed southern coast.
The President should be using extreme language and taking extreme actions to get this hole filled instantaneously. He should be reacting in very much the same way he would react if a nuclear bomb had exploded somewhere on American soil. Nothing less will suffice. What is wrong with our President and what is wrong with America?
Update June 4 10:00 am: The BP robot operators are trying to close the valves on the gusher cap they installed last night. Meanwhile, oil blasts out through those valves while some channels up to a surface ship. It remains to be seen if by closing the valves BP can stop the uncontrolled gusher and channel all of the oil to their ships.
Update June 3 10:00 pm: It does not appear to be working. I think BP keeps insisting on using rather narrow pipes to handle this gusher which is putting out enormous loads of pressure. Why don’t they fit a large sewer pipe around this blowout preventer? A large diameter sewer pipe could simply hang around the gusher without even making a tight fit. Then the gushing oil would be gradually corralled into a somewhat narrower pipe leading to the surface. Blockages of frozen matter seen in the original effort to put a big box around the gusher must be a product primarily of using too narrow gauge a pipe for this job. You can’t try to push all this high-pressure oil into a narrow pipe leading to the surface. You have to gradually ease it up into a very wide pipe.
The cap BP is trying to fit on the gusher simply doesn’t have enough weight to press its rubber gasket tight enough to the pipe, so too much oil is leaking around it. BP’s robot operators are wonderful, but I’m having very serious doubts about the competence of its engineers. Very serious. It may be well past time for President Obama to get NASA involved. There’s no way that a good engineer is going to be trying to fit a narrow pipe over a high-pressure volcano. It’s silly.
By the way, this planetary level disaster is quite likely to wipe out most of the coast of the United States. The greatest superpower nation on earth is about to lose most of its coastline from the south all the way up the eastern seaboard to New York. A single company with a single 24-inch hole in the ground has done this. It is this event, not 9/11, that is the turning point. We have reached the end of the era of global corporations. They are too dangerous. Governments must retool and rethink. Companies like BP must be destroyed, either financially or legislatively.
Original post below:
If you want a few heroes out of this horrendous Gulf Oil Disaster, you should start by watching the work of whoever is controlling the deep water submersible arms. It’s fascinating and highly educational to observe the careful thought process that goes on in advance of every single minute movement made by this machine. Remote control at 5000 feet of depth is a rare skill indeed. BP is attempting to place a cap and pipe onto the cutoff top end of the pipe that is spewing oil into the Gulf waters. So the robots will need to be carefully controlled to aim this device and place it right into the center of the gusher.
This approach has a high probability of success. But if they miss the hole and bend something, they will need to try again. This could well be one of the great feats of engineering in modern times. Well worth watching patiently.
Another idea for plugging the hole in the Gulf in a relatively short time.
The drawings are of course not done to scale. They are conceptual.
I suspect that BP engineers are totally focused on using the existing blowout prevention machine that is not working as the main part of their fix. Consequently, their thinking is running along the lines of what the machine’s capacities and weaknesses are. This may prevent them from thinking ‘outside the blowout preventer,’ so to speak. There should be some engineers spending their time thinking of the problem as if there were no blowout preventer at all. Just an open pipe in a hole with lots of pressure spewing out hot oil and gas. How would you plug that?
I might plug it with a huge concrete and steel cap weight that had a perforated pipe extending from beneath it. The weight and its extending perforated pipe would be slowly lowered over the gusher hole. The perforated pipe would slide inside the gushing well pipe until the huge cap weight above was sitting on the ocean floor. Then cement could be pumped from the surface down a long pipe which would connect to the giant cap weight and its perforated pipe now sitting inside the well pipe. The cement would push down this pipe extension and out through the perforations to plug up the well pipe.
I wonder if this idea holds any merit at all. Perhaps the best part of the idea is for engineers to consider options outside of the blowout preventer.
President Barack Obama has failed to uphold the primary duty of the President of the United States, which is to protect it from physical harm. This president has inexplicably ignored his responsibilities and has turned over a planetary mega-disaster to the foreign oil company that caused the disaster. The total reliance upon a company that has proven itself incapable of planning for problems with underwater oil wells is an abdication of responsibility, a total loss of control and a political nightmare that will effectively end the Obama presidency. If you are a Democrat, as I am, you had better watch the video below. When James Carville, one of the great Democrats and political strategists of the 20th century screams at you this way, with this much anger and this much disbelief, you are a lame-duck president. Doesn’t matter how well you smile. Watch:
Carville is on the money. Obama should have immediately recognized that this hole in the Gulf is a very bad Chernobyl-level disaster that is going to wipe out the southern coast of the United States and possibly kill most life in the Gulf of Mexico. He should have set up an emergency command center in Louisiana at which he was present and he should have put the military at the site of the disaster so that they could use cameras and submarines to keep an eye on what British Petroleum was doing at the well head. There is no reason to believe what BP is telling the U.S. government. There is no reason to believe that they are actually trying a ‘top-kill’ procedure. There is no visual evidence of this and the U.S. military would be able to verify or refute the company’s claims.
The BP oil spill is a Chernobyl-level disaster. It is ongoing and will kill enormous stretches of coastline and turn large portions of the Gulf into dead zones. It will also kill human beings. BP is putting people out into poisonous waters without any Hazmat breathing gear. Those people are starting to get sick already. The poisons can destroy brain tissue and apparently damage lungs.
Fisherman hired to help clean up are getting sick from chemicals at oil spill:
President Obama has failed to put sufficient resources along the coasts to help with cleanup. Instead, he maneuvers politically by sending 1,200 National Guard troops to help ‘protect’ the border in Arizona when everyone knows that those troops cannot do anything at all but stand around and drink coffee. It is not legal for them to arrest anyone crossing the border and they are not authorized to do so. But they could certainly help down in Louisiana with oil.
Obama has decided to visit the area on Friday. So he can have a look. Why doesn’t he put his head into the thick sloppy goop that will be surrounding his boat. When he comes up he’ll be a well-oiled president machine.
This is a very weak president. He does not have the ability to move quickly – in real time – during an extended crisis. It is appalling that he has not been able to overcome his inertia over the course of an entire month of unfolding disaster. If I were an enemy of the United States, I would be paying very close attention to what is going on here and make my move right about now. Like North Korea.
What we find out later about this oil spill will make today’s anger seem mild. Never again will I be misled by a politician who paints himself as a hero to the people. Never. We were all so excited about having a woman candidate in the primaries and a black candidate in the presidential election. But those things really aren’t important enough. We feel proud for electing the nation’s first black president but look what it got us. It got us a corporate middle manager who gives billions to Wall Street friends, turns healthcare reform into a windfall for the insurance companies, continues two useless and expensive wars, continues to hold people in prisons without charges, and cannot figure out how to take control during a horrendous man-made disaster.
Plug the hole with a big… you know… plug. There are no ideas coming out of the U.S. government or its bosses at British Petroleum, so why not offer some of our own. I’m pretty good at offering lots of dumb ideas while trying to find a single good one. So here’s my latest dumb idea.
To modify my idea in the film slightly, I would guess that instead of dropping the plug from chains, you would set the thing down on short legs at the ocean floor and then, when it was aligned with the hole, blow the legs out from under it to drop it into the hole.
I wonder if there are lots of ideas like this for solving the disaster in the Gulf. I’d be very curious to see what other people are coming up with.
After posting my doomsday hole plug idea last night, Scot Monette wrote me a note to point me to this video for his oil spill cleanup product, Petronet. It’s a biodegradable cellulose fiber made from ground up garbage. It’s environmentally friendly and it absorbs huge amounts of oil. When a country gets into a situation where it can only elect intellectual midgets to the highest federal offices (yes, I’m referring to our dimwitted President), you need people like this who are thinking on their feet and use their ingenuity to actually make things that help. Look at this video and ask yourself why the Coast Guard is not on the phone with Mr. Monette at this very moment: