Saturday, June 12, 2010

Oil Slick Dickitude

BP tries to create its own reality.

video: Olbermann: BP Starting To Sound Like Baghdad Bob
The protestations of foreign oil giant BP about their efforts to contain their cataclysmic oil disaster have become increasingly divorced from reality. [...]

Featured in the montage are BP CEO Tony Hayward, COO Doug Suttles, and managing director Bob Dudley, the men running the disastrous response to their company’s catastrophe.

And they're not very good at it.

BP’s failures made worse by PR mistakes
BP is already fighting an oil gusher it can't contain and watching its mighty market value wither away. Its own bumbling public-relations efforts are making a big mess worse.

Not only has it made a series of gaffes — none greater than the CEO's complaint that "I'd like my life back" — the company hasn't even followed its own internal guidelines for damage control after a spill.

Executives have quibbled about the existence of undersea plumes of oil, downplayed the potential damage early in the crisis and made far-too-optimistic predictions for when the spill could be stopped. BP's steadiest public presence has been the ever-present live TV shot of the untamed gusher.

As you can see.

WKRG News (Mobile/Pensacola) Live Stream

Will the BP Fiasco Change U.S. Politics? Don't Bet on It
This is a constant drumbeat, but think about it: Isn't it remarkable how transcendentally awful BP's approach to the Gulf disaster has been? At each and every turn, with the stakes impossibly high, BP has always chosen to do the wrong thing. There's the substance -- having no emergency worst-case contingency plans for a blowout, disingenuously refusing to estimate the amount of oil flowing. There's the politics and image stuff, including CEO Tony Hayward's lies and self-pity and the platoons of lawyers and PR people trying to keep cleanup workers silent and choke off media attention. It's been an awesome display of every kind of 21st century corporate dick-itude. [...]

Meanwhile, the cult of the free market, which too often means letting big business do what it wants, retained a powerful hold on U.S. politics. We're still learning all the ways in which the Bush administration pulled out all the political and regulatory stops for big oil and other energy industries, which led to a culture of lax oversight and technological corner-cutting in a high-risk activity.

Now: When disaster struck, it quickly became obvious that all the green stuff was just for show. Where it counted, BP had not been green at all, but murky brown. Today, with the Gulf of Mexico getting more fouled by the hour and the eyes of the world riveted on its every move (the one time you really, really want to get corporate PR right) BP has demonstrated it cares more about covering its own arse than doing the right thing.


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