From Pine View Farm

Spill Here, Spill Now, Due Process Dept. 2

Andrew Clark, U. S. Business Correspondent for the Guardian, argues against piling on BP. A nugget:

BP hasn’t done itself many favours. Initially, the company woefully underestimated the scale of the spill. And BP’s chief executive has produced a string of cringeworthy remarks. The company was ill-prepared for such an unprecedented disaster but has finally made some progress in plugging the leak. Yet BP has consistently promised to foot the bill for cleaning up the gulf and to meet all valid compensation claims.

Many will argue that BP deserves to die, and anger is entirely understandable. But critics should be careful what they wish for. America is a nation with a tradition of due process and everybody – even “big oil” – is entitled to a fair trial.

I can get behind the part about a trial.



  1. Karen

    June 10, 2010 at 11:44 am

    It’s really hard for me to see their “rights” of due process. 

    1. They lied about too many things to list. Constantly.
    2. Exxon made the very same promises about clean up, then waited out many of the damaged citizens of Alaska until a corporate friendly SCOTUS was seated & got the punitive award cut so the amount was less than their daily profits.
    3. Big business is only out for big business, stock holders, share holders, execs & members of government who support them.

    Am I angry? Yes. Will I get over it? Easier than the fish, birds, mammals & shell fish in the Gulf of Mexico will. Will I continue to make a living? Better than the people of the Gulf in 4 different states who depend on fishing & the tourist industry to survive. Do I care if BP pays its dividends? Not a whit. They need to pay the claims for the damage they’ve done before any dividends are paid to anyone.

    Would I mourn if it went out of business? Yes, only because God only knows what group of crooks will try to dig up the ocean floor next, in place of BP. They could be even less prepared than BP was.

    No, I’m not worried about the potential lack of due process where BP or any corporate machine is concerned.

  2. Frank

    June 10, 2010 at 2:51 pm

    The idea of due process is that you follow it because it is the right thing to do, not because the accused party deserves or doesn’t deserve it.  It’s to protect us from punishing the innocent, not to protect the guilty.

    The market has no due process.  It seems to be exacting its own penalty.