Surprise, surprise: Cliff Weathers at The Albany Project has joined the collective attack of the vapors about Congressman Tom Price’s recent comments regarding the White House and its meeting with BP. In the midst of his hyperventilation, Cliff sniffs at me for not reading things all the way through. Cliff should take his own advice.
Anybody reading my blog post all the way through would know the following:
- I fully support holding BP responsible for the spill and its remediation.
- I fully support ensuring that BP is committed to paying the costs for remediation.
- I fully support the federal government’s taking responsibility for protecting our environment.
The rational and conscientious reader would also appreciate that I openly share Congressman Price’s skepticism about the way in which this White House does business. This extends far beyond the BP matter; the latter is simply emblematic of an approach that relies on closed-door dealings, unaccountable to the public.
As Larry Kudlow points out on Real Clear Politics today, the Administration does not have the legal authority to establish a government-run escrow fund. Nobody is questioning BP’s responsibility, nor do I feel sorry for BP. But we do need our leaders to follow the law; otherwise, the resulting uncertain business environment will shackle the entrepreneurship needed for major technological advances that will ease our dependence on oil. The vibrant, R&D-driven, “all of the above” energy economy we desperately need will remain out of reach.
Have I supported offshore oil exploration? Of course I have. So has President Obama. Only one of us, however, has accepted nearly $80,000 from BP – more than any other politician over the last 20 years – and here’s a hint: it’s not me. Do we need to use the most advanced technology, as I’ve advocated (in fact, as I’m quoted by Cliff to have advocated)? Why, yes, we do, and in fact BP, the company that gave record-setting amounts of money to the President’s campaign, was using old and less safe technology under shoddy federal supervision aboard Deepwater Horizon. In case Cliff stopped reading partway through, that is not something I would favor.
And one more thing: it’s the decades-long campaign against nuclear power, with John Hall as one of its key voices, that has contributed to our continuing thirst for oil. There’s plenty of culpability to go around. So, again: let’s fix the leak and clean up the oil as expeditiously as possible. In the meantime, stop wasting taxpayer money with Congressional grandstanding, and stop being apologists for an Administration whose lack of regard for the law will have consequences far beyond the Gulf catastrophe.