June 16, 2010

Dick Morris_9d5e8_0_0.jpg
graphic courtesy of Huffington Post

Remember the new meme from the GOP, "when are you going to stop blaming the Bush administration?". Let's remind them of Dick "Let me suck your toes" Morris' over-arching need to blame EVERYTHING on Bill Clinton. Still.

The Gulf oil spill that's so bedeviling President Obama has its roots back in the Clinton years.

In 1995, President Bill Clinton signed the Outer Continental Shelf Deepwater Royalty Relief Act, which exempted oil wells drilled deep in the Gulf from the normal royalty payments to the government.

Usually, these payments amount to between 12 percent and 16 percent of their revenues, so the exemption did a great deal to catalyze drilling in deep waters in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Deepwater Horizon well, where drilling began in 2001, was one of those catalyzed by the Clinton legislation. Overall, deepwater oil production in the Gulf shot up from 42 million barrels in 1996 to 348 million in 2004.

The latter figure represents about 6 percent of total US oil consumption and about 15 percent of domestic production. Natural-gas production from deepwater Gulf drilling increased tenfold during the same period.

The legislation was pushed avidly by Republicans in Congress, particularly those representing the very Gulf states now engulfed by the BP spill.

Unfortunately, the Clinton administration -- and the Bush and Obama administrations that followed -- failed to consider seriously what to do if things went wrong.

Pathetic hack. There is nothing that Dick won't wrap himself into a pretzel to blame on Bubba.

Here's an idea, Dick: BP has a CRIMINAL record of safety violations. They have more violations than all the other oil companies put together.

Rather than trying--rather lamely, I might add--to make political hay and score cheap political points, let's place the blame where it belongs with BP and look forward to solutions coming from your party, instead of blame placing on Clinton.

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