Reaching the Louisiana coastline just may not be the end of what has to be the most unforgivable oil spill disaster in American history.   Spewing forth what appears to be an unstoppable fount of greasy, heavy oil, the Keys and the east coast are now sitting in the path of the oil as it floats into the warm gulf current known as the “Loop.”

The Loop Current is similar to a “conveyor belt,” sweeping around the Gulf, through the Keys and right up the East Coast.  The oil could affect Florida’s beaches, coral reefs, fisheries and ecosystem within a week.  The horrendous damage currently being done is just the beginning of a continuing tragedy – a tragedy that is the result of not anticipating the unexpected, or, perhaps, anticipating the type of disaster that occurred but not taking the needed steps to protect against it.

The shrill chants of the “drill, baby, drill” crowd led by Sarah Palin will soon to be drowned out by the anguished cries of those whose livelihoods have been destroyed and the weak squeaks and twitters of the wildlife that will lie dying sporting their glistening, oil coats along the shores and beaches of the entire southeastern part of the United States.

The “gift” that keeps on giving, except in this case it is the nightmare from which we cannot awake.   The magnitude of this spill will be with us for decades.

The notion of increasing off-shore drilling should be a dead issue from this point forward.

Loop current showing flow of gulf waters



  1. @ Charlotte-

    I was hoping you were wrong about the oil spill in the Gulf ultimately getting caught up in the “Loop”.

    Unfortunately – it looks like this is exactly what is going to happen.

  2. Andy:

    I long ago became captivated by the power of natural forces. I took Geology and Geography in undergrad and am fascinated by how the earth’s systems work. These currents are the same to water as the jet streams are to the air. Not to mention the fact that I live next to a river that floods frequently and have learned a lot about river dynamics.

    It is terribly sad to think that because BP and others don’t want to drill on the millions of acres of land already leased by them that now we have immesurable destruction of a number of ecosystems.

  3. Hi Charolotte:

    I have been very saddened by this ongoing disaster! I like to “create” my own reality in an attempt to offset the banking take-over of the American economic system, that happened regardless of all the caveats and efforts to avert it from our dead American political leaders’ in the form of advice. And, has now taken on a life of its own, along with the so-called “war” (occupation/empire) that’s escalating in Afghanistan and Iraq. But this, is life itself, more or less permanent damage the planet! Our great cosmic mother’s womb has been poisoned by man and his greed. A womb that Life itself has evolved…! I see this as nothing short of the beginning of the end of Life. If not, it is a violation of such astronomical purportions that the elite will never be able to live it down, not matter how much money they pour back into it.
    Thank you for writing what you did. It is intelligent and factual. I posted it on my blog for my 127 friends to read it too. I hope that they do. I supplied your link too. I hope some of them come over here and comment…that’s about all we can do.

    • Gag! “…the beginning of the end of life”, really? “Mother’s womb” has spewed far more toxic stuff into the ecosystem than this spill. Any volcanic eruption is instantly more toxic than oil. Oil comes from the very womb you claim is poisoned by man. Earth will recover with or without us. The only question is how much Earth (and consequently us) will have to adapt to the changes we started.

      Seriously, you need to change your perspective before you spiral into self-destructive depression if you aren’t already there.

  4. It isnt heavy crude, its light, and it does make a difference on how microbs can handle the degridation process. I find it amazing how the media has played this. Im going with my gut. Obamas cabinet knows how to work the people, Emmanuel has said never let a good disaster go to waste. Guess what is in the new cap and tax bill (page 67??)as an example of why we need the bill.

    I have said (like the BP CEO who knows more than the media or other bias egg heads) that the ocean is HUGE and will absorb this spill relitivly well. The media has shown pictures in the beginning of The Exxon spill, a little confusing to the mush filled heads who dont differenciate what they are seeing.

    More regulation, if the govt was doing its job we wouldnt be in this discussion, on this or immagration.

    Maybe if we didnt make the companys go 5 miles out they could control spills better? Maybe if we opened more areas in the US they could drill on land.

    Where are the dead fish? Where are the dead turtles? Where are the black beaches and dead birds?

    I would compare this to H1N1. My gut on that said “not going to be bad but the 24 hour news cycle needs fear and panic”. Do you remember the “experts” saying how many would be dead??? My gut on this says same thing. Only this time the progressives can make a grab at govt ownership of the oil and energy sector, but dont you dare call them socialist.

    Did you see the media climbing over one another to get the scoop on the keys oil. And look who bit on the story??? Too bad its not from the oil spill. Maybe it was planted by Greenpeace or another eco terroist group to help limit oil discovery.

    My Bro and Sister in law live in Key West, Ill let you know when there is a story, in the mean time try to imagine how big the gulf is, how big the pipe is, and try to gain some perspective. Is this a good thing, of course not. How is it that the cap and tax bill comes out with this in it?

    I also enjoyed Obama putting the smack down on the oil companys and all involved for passing blame. Thats all he has done since in office.

  5. Ice:

    Good to see you’re back. Doesn’t look like you have changed your political persuasions.

    Now, as to your points

    1. Drill closer? So the next accident can hit the coastline much more quickly? You have got to be kidding. How about visiting those whose livelihoods depend on the gulf and its bounty.
    2. The “bigness” of the ocean or the gulf isn’t the issue. That might be a valid argument if the winds and the gulf currents weren’t “pushing” the oil to shore and were turned outward to the ocean, but they aren’t.
    3. In case you missed today’s news, the dead animals and wild life are just starting to appear. And, just as you noted, the gulf is huge, so maybe their bodies are dropping to the floor of the gulf before they wash ashore.
    4. Drill on more acres on the land? The oil companies already lease millions and millions of acres they don’t use. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5111184

    The bottom line? BP had no measures in place in case of a disaster of the magnitude that just occurred. Maybe they thought they were invincible.

    The earth is our home, and there is no excuse, no justification to treat it the way we do. Justifying and/or excusing BP’s role in this is absolutely ridiculous.

    It took 10 years to clean up the Exxon Valdez mess. I find it incomprehensible that one would even try to defend this nightmare.

  6. If you are against oil drilling stop using your vehicle, stop heating your house, you are a consumer, we drive what happens. You act like the politicians, your just on the side lines. NO you are not. Dont wine about the environment then use all of the goodies we are harvesting.

    If the rig was closer to land we could plug it quicker as it is hard to work 1 Mile under the surface of the ocean.. It is this argument that caused the spill to be so horrible.

    I did research the dead animals, they said this is the normal time of year for turtles to be washing up. They couldnt put a number on the oil caused or not caused deaths.

    I cant believe the failure of Obama. His response is to shut down all exploration, all drilling leases… what an idiot.
    instead of rolling up his sleaves and asking BP what resources they needed, he stood by and chastised them. What do you think his calling off of oil exploration and drilling will do to help the middle class? What do you think the cap and trade bill will do to help the middle class when “energy prices will necisarily skyrocket”. He isnt out to help Americans or America. He wants a big world govt, how can you support that?

    At least when people I have supported screw up, I burry my pride and call them on the carpet. You and Obama are far apart, yet the pride you have in him will not allow you to see him for what he is. How about the twitter comments all being archived, sound like America to you?

    I also assume you will be stopping all driving, eating, use of plastics etc. Even those veggies you eat where planted and harvested with oil. That is how I justify oil exploration.

  7. Ice:

    We have plenty of oil. You are avoiding the discussion about drilling on LAND. How do you explain that the oil companies have leased millions and millions of acres yet do not drill on more than 40,000,000 of them?

    Oil exploration is not necessary offshore. Think about the extra effort that is needed. The oil companies not only have to work their way through water (whatever depth) but also then drill into the earth itself – this has the potential to destroy three environments: 1)the ocean, when oil erupts and cannot be controlled, 2) the land, when the oil washes ashore, and 3) the ecosystems and the life they support. Not to mention the human toll in deaths (the explosion took a number of lives) and the toll in livelihoods.

    Address the issue of drilling on land as opposed to offshore drilling. What is the result of an accident when it happens to an oil well on land?

    Do I support a ban on offshore drilling? YOU BETCHA! I don’t have to stop driving my truck or eating my veggies – there is oil under the land mass of the United States. We also import oil, so the argument that I need to stop doing activities is a red herring.

    Let me ask you this – are you truly watching and understanding what is happening along the coast? Do you care? If you cared, you should be outraged – this disaster now surpasses the Exxon Valdez for destructiveness and cost. It took 10 years to clean up after the Valdez spill.

    How would you feel if you lived along the coast and your livelihood was destroyed?

    Your argument is to defend oil companies and good old capitalistic profit motives – damn the torpedoes and full steam ahead. It is high time that Americans started turning toward “green” initiatives and sustainable living rather than a society based entirely on consumption.

    And here is another thought – for all those who think it is just great that corporations are treated like persons even to the point of donating more money to influence elections than they did before – you want them to have constitutional rights like persons – then let the CEOs and other higher ups answer in the courts of law for criminal actions. You want them treated like persons, then the wrongdoers should be thrown in jail just like real, live human beings.

  8. You’re talking out of both sides of your mouth, Charlotte. Environmental restrictions and the opportunity for environemntalists to challenge land based drilling have got to be significantly greater than for oceanic efforts, thereby making it significantly more expensive and more uncertain. If I’m not mistaken, Congress is the biggest hurdle against deep sea drilling, which has now gotten even bigger.

    ANWR was specifically set aside for possible oil production how many decades ago and it is still undeveloped? Why is that again? Oh yeah, environmentalists.

  9. You said

    We have plenty of oil. You are avoiding the discussion about drilling on LAND. How do you explain that the oil companies have leased millions and millions of acres yet do not drill on more than 40,000,000 of them?

    Because, they lease it to protect it for future use, doesnt mean there is anything there. Oil shale or sands do not yeild as cost effectivey, I will do more research to prove this

    You say
    Let me ask you this – are you truly watching and understanding what is happening along the coast? Do you care? If you cared, you should be outraged – this disaster now surpasses the Exxon Valdez for destructiveness and cost. It took 10 years to clean up after the Valdez spill.

    This arguement that this is the worst may be a little misleading. By gallons, maybe. By destruction, maybe not. I am outraged that the govt failed to protect the coast. Im outraged that the position in the first several weeks by the whitehouse was “we will keep a boot on BPs throat”. Lot of good that did. Why was the response not, “BP, what do you need to get this thing stopped” “All of Americas energy and ingenutiy is behind you”….. Remember when tragity used to hit and we all banned together, not “put a boot on a throa” all for political posturing.
    Obama wouldnt give the govt of Louisiana the permitts he wanted to drege sand for barrier islands, again political or just a big bulky defunked govt??
    You said
    How would you feel if you lived along the coast and your livelihood was destroyed?

    A lot of tourism was destroyed by the media, and blogs that promised the keys were next?? The fishermen were ordered by the govt not to fish. How about fishing then test the fish for oil or contaminates?? Just like when there is a outbreak of salomenella or something and the govt shut down all peppers, tomatoes, ruining lives for nothing.
    BP will pay. By the way Ive been reading and the US govt gives coastal oil producing states 1/4 billion a year for things like this,, Where did it go??

    You said
    Your argument is to defend oil companies and good old capitalistic profit motives – damn the torpedoes and full steam ahead. It is high time that Americans started turning toward “green” initiatives and sustainable living rather than a society based entirely on consumption.

    I am defending oil exploration, in a safe mannor in which our govt promised us. I use oil so I guess I admitt Im part of the problem. And while you piss and moan about corporations, the govt would do it less safe and more expensivley. Do you mean green like the windmills the corporate giant GE is paying Obama to impart on us, totally derailing the normal supply/demand process by giving grants and tax breaks?? And this will make energy prices skyrocket said by Obama. But its green in Obamas and GE pocket and more red ink for the middle class.

    Ceos do answer in court, how many examples do you want. What we need are govt officials in jail for effecting elections by offering positions, scumbags.

    So, in your perfect world, we stop drilling in the ocean, and watch china, venezuala, cuba, russia bore big wholes right next to our country??? This mess should have been handled if inspections were done properly. That being said, accedents happen, now how about big brother stop bitching and whinning and get their hands dirty to help AMERICAS shoreline.

    Another thing, what ever did happen to ingenutiy?? Obamas big answer is stop drilling and exploring, what a coward. What happened to we will find a way to prevent this in the future and still keep the oil flowing. What if we drilled our way out of debt instead of spend our way out. So yes, full steam ahead capitalism, full steam ahead to the man who invents a tripple by pass preventer and deep water shut off. Yes to capitalism to the man who invents an alternative fuel that is not can compete FAIRLY in the market place. Yes to capitalism for the man who starts an offshore barrier building machine. Yes to capitalism to the man who starts the oil cleanup process of the future. And no to socialist big government and environmentalist who use electricty and oil everyday and bitch when something goes wrong.

    Can you imagine if Obama would have been president when the space shuttle was stuck in space. “Ill keep my boot on their throats till they get them home”

    • Uh, you said, “Oil exploration is not necessary offshore. Think about the extra effort that is needed.”

      Compare this to your ANWR article and…do I really need to explain this???

  10. Ice:

    So now you are for “big government” and regulation? Make up your mind. On one hand, you believe that government environmental regulations are the reasons we cannot compete (revisit your statements on China and why corporate honchos outsource) and now you are saying government should have done more?

  11. Foundersten:

    Uh, apparently you do need to explain it. You make a statement, “You’re talking out of both sides of your mouth, Charlotte”, and then fail to offer any support for that statement other than simply referring to my article on ANWR, which argues against drilling in the Alaskan refuge.

    I did not argue to discontinue drilling on all land – note that the oil companies lease millions and millions of acres that have remained untapped. So, yes, it would be great if you provided an analysis of why my ANWR article – which opposes drilling in ANWR – leads you to believe I am contradicting myself.

  12. Well, I guess I have to ask what the point was of your post dated “May 28, 2010 at 11:47 am” above. If you are not advocating that we should be drilling on land instead of the ocean, then what’s the point of bringing up the issue of 40,000,000 acres of untapped leased land? Just argue that we must stop all oil exploration. Then again, you and I both know that’s not feasible because you like the luxury of driving your truck.

    Thus, you are talking out of both sides of your mouth. You want the oil, but you don’t want to support developing it- hence your ANWR article. 40,000,000 acres of land is mighty costly to analyze when Congress has been hanging a carrot that has already been documented to be promising. If not ANWR, then where do you SUPPORT drilling? You’re either for or against it.

  13. Foundersten:

    Apparently, you are reading right past what I said. Again, I did not advocate to discontinue drilling on land completely – I only addressed ANWR. I would argue that there may be other locations that I might oppose as well. That still leaves millions of acres upon which to drill.

    If you read my article, you would have seen that the oil from ANWR would not come close to resolving the energy issues we face. It would only provide a miniscule amount of oil for the effort. The Bakaan Oil Reserve is a much better source.

    I raised the issue drilling on land because the oil companies have millions and millions of acres to use for drilling. That is a pretty simple statement.

    So, here is my position:

    1. Drilling on land is acceptable for the most part – some drilling locations may raise issues.
    2. Drilling offshore is not acceptable – when balanced against the harm done to any number of systems from even one disastrous spill (BP falls into that group)

    I am not sure how much clearer I can get as to my position.

    • Fair enough, so long as you support drilling.

      The fact of the matter, however, is that it doesn’t matter how much we drill for oil we will NEVER be oil independent. Financially, in order for us to make any money on the oil we have to sell it on the international market…done- no longer ours. As a matter of resources, there simply isn’t enough technology available to process all our oil needs- this is without even considering whether or not the oil is actually there. Eventually, even if we could drill all our oil, we would be importing gasoline because we don’t have enough refineries.

      Indeed, it is a simple statement that there are millions of acres of untapped land. Then again, there are millions of acres of tapped land. Check out this report:


      Oceanic oil accounts for only 18% of U.S. oil production. Half of leased land is producing oil and the report admits it doesn’t know how much of the untapped land 1) being actively explored, 2) promising but lack resources to develop, or 3) in the process of fighting environmental litigation.

  14. Foundersten:

    On the CEOs or others who are jailed – I should have been more explicit by what I meant. I know they can be jailed for individual crimes such as fraud, theft, embezzlement, etc. We all know the stories with Madoff, Stewart, etc. The law imposes personal responsibility for defined crimes.

    I am talking about criminal responsibility when environmental disasters occur or such incidents as the West Virginia mining accident. When does responsibility attach to the CEO of the corporation such as Tony Hayward or in the Sago Mine disaster to whoever hides at the corporate top?

    Here is an explanation of the “ownership” of Sago Mine:
    Anker West Virginia Mining is listed as the permittee for the Sago Mine. Testifying before MSHA on March 23, 2006, Vice President Sam Kitts described the corporate structure as follows, “Sago is part of Wolf Run Mining Company, which is a subsidiary of Hunter Ridge Mining Company. Hunter Ridge is a subsidiary of ICG, Inc.” International Coal Group, Inc. was formed in May 2004 by investor Wilbur Ross, who led a group that bought many of Horizon Natural Resources’ assets in a bankruptcy auction. The company produces coal from 12 mining complexes in Northern and Central Appalachia (Kentucky, Maryland, and West Virginia) and from one complex in the Illinois basin.
    Now honestly, do you think anyone will end up in jail? For either of these incidents?

  15. Had to stop by and relish in the glory of being right. Everyone, including the president, caused mass caos in the gulf region by fear. The stopping of drilling? It feels soooooo good to see the “disaster” come to an end, with no real long term or short term impact on the environment. The gulfs worst enemy in this spill was the US govt. Banning fishing, even though the fish could have been tested. The media killed tourism. The bloggers streched to find oil in Florida. “EXPERTS” predicted stronger hurricanes base on a darker ocean gathering more energy.

    A quote from the God like Obama. Obama said that “unlike an earthquake or a hurricane, it is not a single event that does its damage in a matter of minutes or days.” He said the millions of gallons of crude oil that have gushed into Gulf waters from a broken well “are more like an epidemic, one that we will be fighting for months and even years.”
    Even the environmental wakos are saying where is the oil? It can be found next to the trillions that is supposedly saveing jobs–not there..I guess mother nature is pretty efficient at cleaning herself up. Kinda like with co2. She’ll be fine.

    When will some people learn that the media and press are playing them like a fiddle. GM, Chrystler where bailed out because it was a disaster, they are failing. On the otherhand, Ford stuck it out and is the most profitable without the socialized takover. Do you get it???

    Please re-read post 4 by me for an example of how correct I was and am..

  16. Ice:

    Exactly what were you right about? A diagram showing the whereabouts of the oil indicates that about 50% has been cleaned up. The rest is still out there – dispersants only disperse, they don’t destroy and make it disappear.

    But where has the other 50% gone? To the ocean floor? Suspended in the water below the surface?

    By the way, you do realize that this was the hottest July on record, don’t you? http://climateprogress.org/2010/08/03/hottest-july-satellite-record-record-floods-pakistan-temperature-records-russia-heat-wav/

    Haven’t heard much from the climate change/global warming naysayers. Gosh, what would they have to say?


  17. I was right about it being a huge ocean and able to cope with a small amount of oil. You see, during the gulf war, a spill accurred that would make this one look very small. In fact this spill would have to last 400 years to equal what happened over there.

    And just as humans think they can screw up the gulf permanatley, the earth takes care of itself.

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