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“Drill baby drill”

“Drill baby drill” I heard some slack jawed yokel scream out on Fox News the other night while I watching coverage of the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster.

Fox News, as usual, said that this was Obama’s fault and that he was too slow to react. Not only that, but this was “worse than Katrina” and “at least George Bush acted within a couple of days”.

Firstly, this is not Obama’s fault. He is less at fault with this disaster than George Bush was from failing to stop 9/11 happening.

Secondly – are you kidding me? A couple of days is a long time when you’re sitting in the flooded attic of your home with half a metre of breathing space, compared to Obama taking a couple of days for details about this oil slick (that was hundreds of kilometres off shore) to come in before acting.

As usual fingers are quick to point. The “Right” accuse Obama of “not acting fast enough” while saying (and quite possibly accurately saying) that if “Bush was in charge still, the mainstream media would have been all over him about it”.

Obama, quick to defend himself, blames BP – says it’s their fault. BP are quick to defend themselves, saying it’s like doing brain surgery in pitch black conditions at the bottom of the ocean with robots.

And what do the general public do? Many of us shake our heads at the TV saying “this shouldn’t have happened” and a number of people have said “see, this is why oil rigs are bad”.

Come on, could we be any more head in the sand about this? We NEED oil rigs. I wish New Zealand had some – not just because they look kinda cool off the coast (like the gas one off New Plymouth) but because they are good for the economy.

What mother nature creates under the ground is worth a lot of money. Why on earth do you think Australia’s economy is stronger than ours? Because of their mines.

These people that say “drilling for oil” is bad – do they not drive cars? Use buses? Have Vaseline in their house? In fact oil is in so many things that we use on a daily basis – it’s in detergents, fertilisers, medicines, paints, and plastics (like the computer you’re using right now).

Human-beings all over the planet rely on oil based products.

This is weird for me, I’m not usually quick to support oil companies, but in the big scheme of things I think oil rigs around the planet have a pretty good record, at least so far this century.

From a business PR point of view BP must be stressing about this big time… there’s nothing worse than having a major disaster labelled with your company name. Unless it is revealed that BP cut corners or broke the rules I don’t think we should be judging them. We should be supporting them to clean this up and stop the leak as quickly as possible. Eventually, the law suits will come and BP will have to look after those that suffered as a result of their oil rig malfunctioning.

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– By Philip Duncan

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