Billmon: Dear Teabaggers  

Posted by Big Gav in , , ,

Billmon has a post at Daily Kos looking at some of the stranger theories floating around about the compensation fund BP has set up to deal with the oil spill aftermath - Dear Teabaggers.

Your stupidity, fanaticism and all around mean spiritedness continue to astound, with your bizarre and – dare I say it – unpatriotic defense of British Petroleum only the latest example.

While I realize facts and logic are completely lost on you, can you at least TRY to get it through your tiny, floresiensis-like skulls that:

1.) The Constitution in your head notwithstanding, the REAL one doesn't forbid the president and/or his Attorney General from negotiating settlements of this kind. The Justice Department does it in environmental enforcement actions all the time, although usually without the 24/7 hysteria.

2.) The money is going to be held in an ESCROW account. Are you familiar with the term? Have you ever closed on a house? It means the money cannot be spent or disbursed without the approval of the trustee, who in turn will need to get approval from the courts. Again, this is a completely standard way of handling settlements in environmental cases.

3.) The money is NOT going to ACORN, your favorite all-purpose boogeyman. ACORN doesn't exist any more. Deal with it.

4.) BP agreed to the deal BECAUSE IT IS IN ITS OWN CORPORATE INTEREST. Lately investors have been shunning BP until they have some kind of idea of the company's potential legal liability. This has caused yields on BP bonds to soar and made it hard for the company to roll over short-term debt, threatening the company (and the entire financial system) with insolvency. While the settlement is not final, it does give investors some reason to hope the company will remain viable -- which in turn makes it more likely that it WILL remain viable.

5.) BP, its shareholders, and the wildlife in the Gulf of Mexico aren't the only ones at risk here. Do you by chance remember what happened to a company called Lehman Brothers when it couldn't roll over its short-term debt a couple of years ago? Do want to see a repeat of that fun-filled episode?

6.) If anything, Obama is doing BP a favor by coming to terms so quickly. The fact that BP was so eager to accept those terms is a clear sign it understands just how MORE humongeous its liabilities could be if this ends up in court. If you want to blame Obama for subverting the course of justice, go right ahead (although I'm not sure he had any realistic choice) but it's ridiculous to blame him for that with one breath and then accuse him of "shaking down" BP in the next. There was no shakedown – or, if there was, the muscle behind it was provided by Wall Street, not Chicago (unless you mean the futures pits).

Even for you, this is mendacity on a pathological scale, amounting practically to a psychotic break from reality. Your movement has become the social equivalent of BP’s blown out well: completely out of control and spewing toxic crap in every direction. Joe Barton, at least, had the excuse of being a well paid prostitute on permanent retainer to the oil industry. What’s yours? Only fools give it away for free.



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