Fox news chastizes BP

May 17, 2010 • 12:43 pm

My world is turned upside down.  Shepard Smith rips BP a new one—at Fox News! And this comment by BP CEO Tony Hayward will go down in history along with “Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job” and “Mission accomplished”:

“The Gulf of Mexico is a very big ocean. The amount of volume of oil and dispersant we are putting into it is tiny in relation to the total water volume.”

Let’s see.  The volume of the Gulf of Mexico is 642 trillion gallons.  I guess we shouldn’t get seriously worried unless the volume of oil leaking from Deepwater Horizon is, say, 0.1% of that every year.  That’s 40 million barrels of oil per day.  NO WORRIES—we’re nowhere near that!

18 thoughts on “Fox news chastizes BP

  1. Fox news will have to fire Smith – he actually makes sense and is using logic and reason – Fox can’t stand that!

  2. Yeah, if all the oil were evenly distributed as tiny emulsified droplets throughout the entire Gulf of Mexico, that would be fine. Alas, there’s that pesky oil-water problem, and the whole thing about surfaces and shorelines. Darned laws of physics.

  3. Don’t forget: Smith’s from Mississippi, so any Gulf Coast disaster hits him hard. His coverage of the Katrina aftermath was pretty good too, and not just by comparison to the usual run of Faux morons.

  4. That was marvelous. Good on you, Shep Smith!

    That was the very first time I’ve ever watched Fox News without dry-heaving.

  5. Wingnuts don’t want to see their condos devalue. If it only affected sea life and endagered species, the oligarchy rather have fuel for their posthumous brand of beach Hummers.

    1. Damn piece of shit laptop. Let’s try this again.

      “If it (oil spill) only affected sea life and endangered species, the oligarchy would *still* rather have fuel for their posthumous brand of beach Hummers.”


    1. I swear, it’s changed since this morning, when it clearly said “trillions” on that page! Evidence: if you do a Google search, you find this on the Google page (which is not where I took the figure from), linking to the same website.

      General Facts about the Gulf of Mexico | GMPO | US EPA
      The Gulf of Mexico, the ninth largest body of water in the world and … of the Gulf is ~1615 m and the basin contains a volume of 642 trillion gallons. …

      Anyway, if this is accurate, it makes it even worse for BP, so you can change my figure of 0.1% to 0.0001%.

      1. Wolfram Alpha to the rescue:

        Gulf of Mexico Area * Gulf of Mexico Average Depth * 1.101×10^12 gallons/mi^3
        = 9.298×10^16 gallons
        = 93 quadrillion gallons

        But, accounting for the factor of 10 discrepancy, Wolfram has the GoM’s area wrong (!): it’s over 600 thousand square-miles, not 60 thousand.

        Besides, surface area is the relevant metric, not volume, oil floating on water and all.

  6. I’m still concerned about Obama’s role in this.

    Obama biggest recipient of BP cash

    Politico, 5 May 2010

    “BP and its employees have given more than $3.5 million to federal candidates over the past 20 years, with the largest chunk of their money going to Obama, according to the Center for Responsive Politics… During his time in the Senate and while running for president, Obama received a total of $77,051 from the oil giant and is the top recipient of BP PAC and individual money over the past 20 years, according to financial disclosure records.”

  7. The Gulf of Mexico is a very big ocean. The amount of volume of oil and dispersant we are putting into it is tiny in relation to the total water volume.

    And as every schoolboy knows, the oil will sink straight to the bottom of the ~mile deep Gulf, where it will pose no problem for marine life.

    So this is one of those environmental problems where volume is the relevant metric (whether measured in trillions or quadrillions), rather than something completely irrelevant like surface area.

  8. I don’t know, it sounded to me like he was more angry that it was a *British* company appearing to not care about damage to *American* livelihoods than about any ecological damage. I wonder if he would have been so pointed if the spill was Chevron’s responsibility.

    1. I certainly got that impression too KP, I wondered if there would have been such an emphasis on “we” had it the oil leak come from US Patriot Oil.

  9. This shouldn’t be a surprise. Shep Smith has consistently demonstrated that he is a principled man (perhaps the only principled anchor at Fox News).

    His most memorable YouTube moment was from a live TV discussion on U.S. torture, in which he forcefully declared, “We are America! We do not f*cking torture!” That wasn’t a one-time thing. After Obama’s win, he argued against the conservative meme that the media won the election for Obama. Money quote: “The mainstream media reflected what was happening in this nation; it did not drive it.” He’s stood up against those who believe Obama is a Kenyan/socialist/Muslim (which earned him angry e-mails from Fox viewers), and has apologized for “lack of balance” in segments appearing on his show.

    Those are just the more obvious and recent examples. It’s certainly not unexpected from him, though.

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