Gulf oil spill: How BP became the victim

  • Article by: JOE NOCERA , New York Times
  • Updated: July 9, 2013 - 6:04 PM

After spill, lawyers have managed to make BP a victim. There will be ramifications.

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davehougJul. 9, 13 6:20 PM

We like to talk in the United States about our belief in the rule of law, but the truth is that what is going in Louisiana today is not all that different from when a corrupt Russian official creates a fake tax liability to line his pockets at the expense of some hapless company operating in Russia. “This is Louisiana, after all,” a local plaintiffs’ lawyer told Bloomberg Businessweek recently. “A big foreign company with deep pockets, and you’re surprised there’s a feeding frenzy? Come on, man.” - - - - Are we a nation of laws or of men?????

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pumiceJul. 9, 13 7:12 PM

From the article: "[Kenneth] Feinberg spent almost as much time turning down bogus claims as he did approving payments to victims. It almost goes without saying that the Louisiana plaintiffs’ bar found such a scheme offensive.... So a group of lawyers — known as the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee — persuaded their clients to skip the Feinberg process and sue BP." Hmmmmmm. Who had forced the fake victim-plaintiffs to file false claims with Mr. Feinberg? Did the Plaintiffs' Steering Committee force anyone to sue? Did each plaintiff not have to prove his/her case in court? Does BP not have competent attorneys?

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rshacklefordJul. 9, 13 8:29 PM

Tony Hayward spewed lies about the seriousness of the disaster and cried about wanting his "life back." Turnabout is fair play. BP can keep doing those stupid smiley-faced commercials as they make me laugh.

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forbirds2Jul. 9, 13 9:11 PM

This isn't an "article," like news reporting you would expect from a newspaper, this should be labeled what it is, an opinion piece. At least it's in the opinion section

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diogenesnyJul. 10, 13 6:54 AM

"(BP) has taken its medicine willingly." As well they should, seeing that it was their cheapness and cost-cutting that caused the problem - and their attempts to hide what was happening that upgraded it to a disaster. Perhaps this will all be a cautionary example to the next multinational who thinks about trimming their costs without regard to the potential consequences.

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mn2niceJul. 10, 13 7:08 AM

I don't think it is fair to willingly and knowingly make false claims against anyone, including BP. Claimants who did that should be held accountable for using the legal system to satisfy their own gluttony. On the other hand, throughout 2010 and beyond BP should have been a willing and responsible "partner" in terms of being at the table actively working to fulfill its responsibilities under the National Response Framework. Instead they were more worried about managing the crisis in terms of their corporate image. They were highly criticized for their total lack of preventive measures which would have helped to make the spill less of a disaster than it turned out to be. The record speaks for itself on what BP did and did not do, and what it has done since this disaster pales in comparison to what it did not do before and during the disaster. In that respect alone, I have little sympathy for what they are going though now. This was a totally preventable disaster IF BP and its partners in this venture had followed the rules and not taken shortcuts to save money.

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longmemoryJul. 10, 13 7:40 AM

It's what I've always said. Wherever there's money there's people after it.

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davehougJul. 10, 13 8:06 AM

I have little sympathy for what they are going though now - - - This is a common attitude. BUT when any company is forced to pay claims with no showing of harm, we all loose. Guess what the next disaster will bring - pay claims quickly or drag thru courts????

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Don9539Jul. 10, 13 8:37 AM

Those of you piling on BP seem to have good hind sight. What I wonder is if given the choice of two gas pumps, one priced higher due to implementing all your suggestions, which one would you have chosen?

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fairplay2277Jul. 10, 13 1:38 PM

Typical responses on this liberal site - screw big business no matter what, even though they have paid out far more than they were required. Forget about being responsible, honest citizens and try and weasel as much money as you can from the evil corporations whether you deserve it or not. Sickening...I hope I can teach my kids to be better than that. As has been the case since 2008, entitlement mentality in this country rules!

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