BP Stock Rises As Oil Giant Shirks Responsibility


Another thing about that BP report …

Even a cursory survey of media coverage on the BP spill report proves nobody was fooled – but let’s also note that the company didn’t actually mean to fool anyone. This was a cynical, hardball tactic to create evidence for later use both in court and in formal congressional hearings.

How “not fooled” are we? The AP noticed that: “… The word fault shows up 20 times, but only once in the same sentence as the company’s name.”

Some high-profile public figures pretty much dismissed the document, with Billy Nungesser, the frequent CNN guest and president of Plaquemines Parish, told the AP that the report doesn’t change the fact that in his mind the time that has passed since the disaster hasn’t made offshore drilling safer. He faulted the BP report for not trying to suggest specific safety improvements.

And Congressman Edward J. Markey, who has been a leading voice on the spll, said that the report is “… not BP’s mea culpa.” He also observes that: “… of their own eight key findings, they only explicitly take responsibility for half of one. BP is happy to slice up blame as long as they get the smallest piece.”

I’ve always found it interesting to check in on what the market thinks about major BP events. And it seems to like this first draft of a defense. As the report went public Wednesday, BP shares trading in New York rose $1.18, or 3.2 percent, to close at $38.37.

A version of the AP coverage is here: http://blog.al.com/live/2010/09/regret_apology_not_part_of_bps.html

© Smith Stag, LLC 2010 – All Rights Reserved

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Stuart H. Smith is an attorney based in New Orleans fighting major oil companies and other polluters.
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