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Monday, June 21, 2010

Pulse on BP

Is Tony Hayward Satan? No, he's just clueless. Hayward showed up at a yacht race off the coast of England this weekend, as the idle rich -- particularly Brits -- are known to do. However, most of those in attendance probably are not the face of a company involved in a major environmental catastrophe, at the moment.

Tony Hayward merely has horrible judgment. I'm not condoning his "testimony" in front of Congress, and I'm certainly not condoning the actions of his company. However, he isn't evil, he just doesn't get it. He needs to be on ultra-best behavior until well after this issue is solved. The public needs a whipping boy, and that's why he's getting that huge salary. He needs to pick up his oil-sopping cross, sling that thing over his back, and be a good little whipping boy until the leak is stopped and every bird is cleaned. This is BP's problem and the reason they should be replacing Hayward.

Since we're on to BP, despite my somewhat Libertarian leanings, I have absolutely no issue with the U.S. Government going after BP. In fact, I firmly believe this is precisely the time when the government should seize a company's assets. You only have to know me about four seconds to know how much I hated the bailout of the auto and insurance industries. One of the main reasons was the precedent created by the fallout of that decision. There is no way that the government can save face if they make a move to seize BP's assets.

Let me be clear: I want BP to pay the ultimate price, I want them to fall on the sword. BP should be out of business over this, that is how sinister I view the repercussions of their actions. I use the word 'their' intentionally there. I understand that this is people's jobs and that BP, the corporate pariah, is actually made up of people. Nonetheless, they need to pay and they need to pay dearly. Those people all made the choice to work for a particular company, and they are culpable for that company's decisions. That's the way life should work. It gets back to the rights-vs.-responsibilities argument: if you work at BP, invest in BP, or buy your gas there, you bear some of the responsibility for this issue. For that latter group, you get a break, but if you're still buying your gas there, you are as guilty as Tony Hayward.

So, Tony, I hope you enjoyed your day with your son. My guess is, many of those actually getting their hands dirty cleaning up your company's oily mess were not afforded the same luxury on Father's Day. The fact that you used that explanation to explain your ill-timed day off, my friend, makes you an ass. It is my hope that someone in this colossal failure of what we deem a government will step forward and hold BP accountable for paying the ultimate price. Not surprisingly, I'm not covering any bets on the issue.

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