Sunday, July 11, 2010

Gulf Coast welcomes a native son home, sorta

I wasn't one of the 35,000 who snapped up tickets for tonight's free concert on the beach in Gulf Shores, and I'll be damned if I'll turn one plug nickel over to a scalper.  So, we'll watch the show live on CMT from the comfort of the family's 4,700 square foot sin palace at Fort Morgan, just 12 miles from the venue.

On the menu are Cheeseburgers in Paradise and ice cold Margaritas.

Though Mobile and the Gulf Coast are proud to call Jimmy Buffett one of our own, a whole bunch of us wish he had stuck to his roots and not "gone Hollywood:"

Buffett, a supporter of President Barack Obama, said the roots of the spill lie with the administration of former President George Bush, which was often criticized for being too cozy with the petroleum industry.

"To me it was more about eight years of bad policy before (Obama) got there that let this happen. It was Dracula running the blood bank in terms of oil and leases," he said. "I think that has more to do with it than how the president reacted to it."

If he says that, or anything like it on stage, he's gonna get the what-for from 35,000 people who have watched this disaster unfold in slow motion.  They've watched while a completely discombobulated federal response has let tens of millions of gallons of oil foul beaches and marshes and toss tens of thousands of people out of work.  We've been outraged by an ill-conceived and fraudulently prepared moratorium on deepwater drilling that has already begun sending rigs to other parts of the world.

The President has reacted by playing golf no fewer than eight times nine times and enjoying three vacations.  He had as many fundraising appearances last week (four) as he's made trips to the Gulf Coast since his WTF moment on April 29. In between, he's sued the state of Arizona for trying to do a job he won't, threw Israel under the bus for defending herself and waited ten weeks before accepting offers of oil spill cleanup assistance from foreign countries.

So ummm, yeah... it really is more about how the President has reacted to it.  As for the flaccid attempt to lay the blame at Bush's feet, maybe our prodigal native son should have a look at the record.  For starters, there wasn't an oil spill on Bush's watch.  At least, not one like this.

And secondly Jimmy, maybe you didn't know that while the mineral rights to drill the Macondo Prospect, abbreviated as MC252, were leased by BP in March, 2008,  mapping of the block was completed in March 2009, and the drilling plan was approved by Obama's MMS in June 2009 by an unlicensed drilling engineer at the agency's New Orleans office.  The semi-submersible rig Mariannas spudded the first well at the site and commenced drilling in October 2009.  The rig was damaged by hurricane Ida in November (click for the source).  Deepwater Horizon took over drilling at the site in February 2010 and, according to this Bloomberg story, almost immediately began experiencing problems with the well. 

Jimmy, you're one of ours so forgiveness is easier to come by, but you need to get your facts straight and get your political feet back in the warm waters of the Gulf.  Maybe the change in latitude will bring about a change in attitude. Either that, or just shut your damned political piehole and play a song or something.

PS: Welcome home and thanks for the concert.  We'll be watching and singing along with everyone else.

Gimme some feedback in the comments.