Why is the Gulf Cleanup So Slow?

Ferris wheels go up, and then they also come down. This is one of the down parts.

Today, a piece in the Wall Street Journal by Paul H. Rubin was the lever that got my wheel spinning...kind of like the one this guy is cranking.
Why is the Gulf cleanup so slow?

I am frustrated. I am just one voice out of millions who are. I used to think that stopping the leak should be priority, but I have given up hope for the spew to cease before this relief well is drilled in August. I suppose we all have to sit in our living rooms watching the gush continue in that little box on the corner of the screen on CNN until then. In the meantime, while we wait for August to get here, there's a huge black slick of oil floating off the shores of my state affecting livelihoods and ecosystems. Why are we on day 77?

Of course, this is a massive undertaking. A massive challenge that is sorely in need of top-down, command and control leadership. But that control should not prohibit local authorities from taking prudent measures to save their own coastlines. They are the foot-soldiers...the boots on the ground...the first line of defense. Receiving permission to act in the best interests of their regions should not require an act of Congress.

Rubin states, "Of the 2,000 skimmers in the U.S...only 400 have been sent to the Gulf. Federal barriers have kept the others on stations elsewhere in case of other oil spills, despite the magnitude of the current crisis. The Coast Guard and the EPA issued a joint temporary rule suspending the regulation on June 29—more than 70 days after the spill."

Well, it's about time.

That means we've been short 1,600 skimmers for 70 days. And plenty of offers of clean-up assistance from other countries that have been turned down based on the Jones Act, a 1920 law requiring that ships working in U.S. waters be operated by Americans. That law could be waived.

But it hasn't been.
(Ironically, it was just pointed out to me by one of my readers that the man in the ferris wheel picture above is wearing a hat called a "skimmer." I had no idea, but please pretend that I knew exactly what I was doing.)
My six-year-old daughter asked me, "Why can't everyone in the whole world go to clean up the oil? 'Cause then it would get done fast."

As sweet and naive as her thought is, she has a point. And if not everyone in the whole world, then how about just the folks (and countries) who are willing and able? Obviously, much more could be accomplished if hands were not tied for bureaucratic or political reasons.

NOW comes the part of the ride where the ferris wheel goes back up...

My dad recently took a trip to the Gulf and took this picture of an unusual cloud formation in the sky. Do you see what I (and many others) have seen?

It is the profile of a person praying. Head bowed, hands clasped, right shoulder and arm visible.

Praying over the Gulf...literally.

The picture speaks for itself.

Ride is over for today. Until next time,


  1. Yeah BP will probably get away with this one and the tax payers will be left to hold the bag! Following you back from www.peacefuldivas.com !

  2. Not that I think it would change anything in Washington, but, IMHO, you've said exactly what
    someone needs to hear and give heed to. Your baby girl is wise beyond her years..and as the quote says, "out of the mouths of babes".....

  3. P.S. The picture of the "cloud of prayer" is awesome. God is not limited in how He speaks to man.

  4. Hey! Just re-followed you not sure why my face did NOT show up! Have an Awesome Day!

  5. I have been praying for this clean up xxx

  6. So true! It would get cleaned up so much easier. Many hands make light work!

  7. More people in charge of our country need to listen to the wise words that come from our children.
    Came to you through iFellowship from thepurplehound.blogspot.com and prairiestormdesigns.blogspot.com

  8. hi! following you from the bloghop -- great blog :)


  9. I am wondering the same things myself. This has gone on far too long. I wonder why we weren't prepared. Did we not learn anything from Valdez? I love the picture. It's a great reminder for us all.

    Take care!

  10. I don't know if I really see the formation the way you do, but I think your six-year-old has a point. My husband and I have been wondering many of the same things. It's a shame when corporations are allowed to put profit over public health and environmental welfare.

    Sarah @ BecomingSarah.com

  11. Stopping by from Friday-Follow to thank you for joining us this week.

    Have a great day!

  12. Visiting from Friday-Follow. That picture is so amazing!!!! You have a really great blog! Lots of great reading here!!! Happy Friday to you!


  13. Amen Sister! This bureaucracy is crazy and meanwhile our fragile ecosystem and the livelihood of so many families hang in the balance. It breaks my heart. Prayer changes things though....I have to remember that. Have a great weekend! Candace

  14. It is definitely a very sad situation. I wish we had more people like you (and your dear sweet daughter!) up there in D.C. doing what needs to be done. We would be a lot better off, that's for sure!

    Thanks so much for stopping by my blog and for leaving a comment. I am blessed to already be friends with Lynn Adams. She is such a dear sweet soul. I met her recently through blogging and Facebook. I bought her book and have been trying to read it for a while now. However, this illness makes it very hard to read anything for any length of time. *sigh* I have listed it in my Resources link so that hopefully more people will find it and buy it. I know that anyone who reads it knows that it is an awesome book.

    I {{heart}} your blog and just became your newest follower. I can't wait to get to know you better.

    Have a wonderfully blessed Sabbath.

    Teresa <><

    ♥ Too Many Heartbeats ♥

  15. how true!! your six-year-old has a point...love the post.

    thanks so much for stopping by and leaving me those sweet words. a really appreciate it.
    Underneath His Wrapping

  16. Love, love, love the cloud pic!! And yes, beaurocracy makes absolutely zero sense.

  17. That picture is amazing!
    Thanks for the comment and follow, I'll be following you as well :)


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