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American Opinion: On BP taking financial responsibility for Gulf oil spill recovery

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American Opinion: On BP taking financial responsibility for Gulf oil spill recovery
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

An excerpt from recent editorials in newspapers in the United States:

From The Associated Press

On BP taking financial responsibility for Gulf oil spill recovery:

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Joe Barton was wrong. Mostly.

Barton, an Arlington Republican who in Congress represents about a third of Tarrant County and most of seven other counties stretching toward Houston, was out of place and out of touch when he issued his now infamous apology to BP Chief Executive Tony Hayward for "a $20 billion shakedown" at the hands of President Barack Obama.

Later that day, apparently at the insistence of his own party's leaders, Barton retracted the apology to BP and instead apologized for having characterized the White House actions as a "shakedown."

By now, plenty of people have either beaten up on or praised Barton for his remarks, to the point that the news cycle for the incident has been exhausted.

But take away the distracting sound and fury over his loose lips and perhaps momentarily disengaged mind and focus on the huge claims fund instead.

The British oil behemoth did some terrible things that caused the April 20 blowout on the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig off Louisiana. ...

But the picture of the company that is emerging now is better. That picture is symbolized by BP's agreement with Obama to create the $20 billion fund to pay damage claims from the spill and $100 million more to pay people and companies for lost income due to the subsequent government moratorium on offshore drilling.

Despite various stumblings, BP is now stepping up to the plate. And while Barton clearly chose the wrong words and the wrong approach, he was right to (note) that BP is not run by demons. ...

The $20 billion fund is a credible, even praiseworthy, way to do that. There is ample precedent for it, and it promises to deliver speedy relief to people along the Gulf Coast whose economic lives have been shattered by the spill. ..

Of course, this is not a philanthropic effort on BP's part. The company benefits if it can settle claims quickly rather than being tied up in court for years, if not decades. ...

-- Star-Telegram, Ft. Worth, Texas

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