Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Government To Oil Plume Discoverers: STFU

Once again we are confronted with an instance in which "our" government is manifestly acting in a way contrary to the public interest. Here's Jim White of Firedoglake:

On Saturday, the New York Times brought the world’s attention to the discovery by a team of researchers on the the vessel Pelican that there are large underwater plumes of oil emanating from the Deepwater Horizon spill. Remarkably, the response of the government to the attention focused on this discovery has been to tell the researchers to stop granting interviews with the press. At the same time, the blog on which the researchers had been providing updates has also fallen silent since Saturday.
 Please read the post yourself.

The government agency apparently compelling the Pelican team to decline to inform the public is NOAA. That agency also happens to contain the National Weather Service, which in turn fields the National Hurricane Center. Thus it is inevitably one of the most important sources of storm information for those of us on the Gulf Coast as yet another hurricane season begins.

Will NOAA tell meteorologists and hurricane researchers to STFU rather than reveal something unpleasant to the public about a storm in progress? Just how far does this government suppression of essential information go, and who benefits from it?

Afterthought: NOAA's excuse? not enough ship time available on its limited research vessels to pursue this "academic" matter. Right.


  1. Real reason - they're broke.

    The whole time the Shrubbery was in office the Repubs tried to shut down NOAA over global climate change and to help their campaign contributors.

    Santorum was trying to stop NWS from "giving away" weather forecasts because there was a private weather forecaster in Pennsylvania.

    NOAA hasn't been scrubbed of Bush appointees, hasn't seen a budget increase in years, is down one satellite with no replacement in the pipeline, and has next to no money in its research budget.

    Republicans hate science and want everything privatized.

  2. I suppose we can take comfort in that privatized Fascism has to be well funded in order to operate smoothly. Republidumbs will eventually and quite successfully, with the DINO's turn our tottering empire into a third world, D-list country.



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