Now, they've resorted to the last refuge of the rich and powerful when they're totally fucked--sheer, unmitigated spin. BP CEO Tony Hayward actually said this:
We will fix it. I guarantee it. The only question is we do not know when. The Gulf of Mexico is a very big ocean. The amount of volume of oil and dispersant we are putting into it is tiny in relation to the total water volume.Masterful. He leads with, "We will fix it." Very forceful and confident. He doubles down by guaranteeing it. Then he slips in some fine print, "The only question is we do not know when." So, He vows to fix it. Guarantees he'll fix it. Then he slides in the fact that it may take quite some time. Like, when the last of the oil gushes out of the pipe, maybe?
So far, this is very pedestrian PR work. But then, sensing he has his audience off balance, Heyward unleashes a gem that will go into the Spin Hall of Fame on the first ballot when it's eligible in five years. "The Gulf of Mexico is a very big ocean," Hayward said, "The amount of volume of oil and dispersant we are putting into it is tiny in relation to the total water volume."
See, guys, it's just a little bit of oil in the great blue-brown sea. It's like peeing in an Olympic sized swimming pool. Nothing to worry about. Why are you guys so mad?
In my mind's eye I can see it: somewhere, Karl Rove slowly tips his hat in appreciation of a supremely skilled peer.