Do something, baby, do something: That's the cry from Obama supporters and opponents alike as the oil keeps gushing into the Gulf of Mexico.
The political firestorm kept growing yesterday, with supporter James Carville ranting that the administration has been "lackadaisical" and "naive" in its response to the disaster. He urged it to rapidly "move to Plan B."
But that suggests there was ever a Plan A.
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is so frustrated with the lack of response to his plan to stop the slick with sand barriers that yesterday he called on the White House and BP to either "stop the oil spill or get out of the way."
"Plug the damn hole," President Obama reportedly barked at staffers in frustration after the explosion. That's right up there with "Heckuva job, Brownie" in terms of clueless statements uttered by presidents in the midst of nationally televised disasters.
Meanwhile, White House regret over Obama's politically expedient embrace of the "Drill, baby, drill" trope is growing faster than the vast oil slick.
Back on March 31, Obama announced -- to the horror of many of his supporters -- that he was expanding offshore drilling along the coastlines of the south and mid-Atlantic and in the Gulf of Mexico. Worse, he painted a (too) rosy scenario of offshore drilling being eminently safe.
True, it is rare that a full-blown environmental catastrophe results from an offshore oil well. But it can happen -- and a Democratic president who's embracing drilling ought to know the risks, and be prepared for the worst. But rather than planning for a spill, Obama parroted McCain-Palin talking points about how safe offshore drilling is.
Turns out the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration back in 1994 drafted plans for responding to a major Gulf oil spill, a response called "In-Situ Burn."
Ron Gourget, a former federal oil-spill-response coordinator and one author of the draft, told The Times of London: "The whole reason the plan was created was so that we could pull the trigger right away." The idea was to use barriers called "fire booms" to collect and contain the spill at sea -- then burn it off. He believes this could have captured 95 percent of the oil from this spill.
But at the time of the Deepwater Horizon explosion, the federal government didn't have a single fire boom on hand. Nor is there any evidence that the government required BP to have any clear plan to deal with a massive spill. How is this OK?
Kirsten Powers is a New York Post columnist and Fox News contributor. To continue reading her column, click here.
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