The following are– in my opinion– the most important points and quotations from President Obama’s Oval Office Speech on the Gulf Spill:
- One vital aspect of cleaning up this spill– and moving forward with suitable policies– is admitting that something has gone wrong and that not everything is in the hands of the federal government.
- In short, instead of setting an unreasonably high standard which he and his proxies cannot uphold, President Obama is being pragmatic and acknowledging the limitations that he suffers from on this issue.
- Simple and to-the-point. He’s recognized what he can’t do, now he’s telling us what he can and will do.
“These servicemen and women are ready to help stop the oil from coming ashore, they’re ready to help clean the beaches, train response workers, or even help with processing claims — and I urge the governors in the affected states to activate these troops as soon as possible.”
- Now, Obama is exerting his presidential force. He’s saying that he’s provided the people of the Gulf Coast a source of aid, and it’s not something that they’re paying extra taxes for: it’s the troops.
- In essence, he’s giving the governors of the Gulf states a gift, and it’s up to them to decide whether or not to use it. He cannot be blamed, he’s saying, for not supplying the states with enough assistance.
- This is probably the most important step in moving forward. All eyes have turned to the federal government and its lack of regulation of Big Oil. BP abused safety policies before the spill and hid economic facts afterward.
- So, Obama is saying that BP will be responsible for paying all costs resulting from the Deepwater Horizon explosion and spill, and that, in order to make sure that everyone is compensated appropriately, BP will not be in charge of the monetary distribution.
- This is important in terms of both Obama’s public image and Gulf Coast citizens’ well-being.
- Obama’s looking to the future instead of getting caught up in the momentary issue.
- He’s creating a “long-term Gulf Reservation Plan” to not only clean up the spill, but also looking to get back jobs, a healthy environment, and prevent this from happening again.
- This is the responsible and respectable thing to do. He’s acknowledging that in order to move forward, he must look back. He’s avoiding any impetuous behavior.
- Also, this is a good pushing-off point for a campaign that promotes alternative energy sources and weans this country off of oil from offshore drilling.
- He’s acknowledging the importance of government regulation.
- E.g. Just as a lack of regulation caused the housing market to collapse (the mortgage crisis), so too was a lack of regulation a key ingredient in the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon.