Monday, May 3, 2010

Rep. Gene Taylor Aide Calls Concerned Citizens "Morons"

Earlier today, I blogged about Rep. Gene Taylor (R-MS), his comment about the BP oil spill looking like rainbows and chocolate milk and mocked it for it's flippancy. A silly thing to say because at the very least it sounds juvenile and dismisses the seriousness of the situation in the Gulf, and at worst it's a deliberate attempt to mislead his constituency and downplay the event. Frequent reader Wolfe Tone added that we were on the same wavelength in the comments section.

I soon thereafter received this comment:

Brian Martin said...
You are both morons. Rainbow sheen = broken down to the point of evaporation and degradation.
Chocolate milk = emulsified oil-water mix being broken down by waves and sun.
So those are useful descriptions from a 13-year Coast Guard veteran.
You should be mocking all the Chicken Littles who predicted that the coastal areas of 4 states would be covered with heavy crude by now.
Not thinking anything of it except that it was some random wingnut, I responded with the fact that he failed to address the spill being far from over with a conservative estimate of 200,000 gallons leaking per day, destruction of the local fishing industry, the wildlife and environmental repercussions, and other assorted things that right wingers don't care about. I also hoped he'd come back to apologize when the inevitable coastal areas actually would be "covered in crude."

My friend, Wolfe Tone however, was a little more curious and in a matter of a few mouse clicks was able to obtain a Washington DC internet service provider, Google the names and VOILÁ! Brian Martin works for Rep. Gene Taylor. And he called us morons because we understand the gravity of the situation, unlike his boss.

The next time Brian Martin decides to respond to blogs criticizing the Representative who employs him, he should have the sense to either A) use a pseudonym or B) have the professional courtesy of full disclosure. It kind of puts your credibility in question. ...Moron.


Brian Martin said...

I don't use a pseudonym because I do not try to hide who I am.

You guys called Taylor names without even trying to understand what he said. You are part of the chorus who call themselves environmentalists but are cheering for the oil spill because you want this to end very badly for the coastal environment for political reasons.
Taylor is not defending or absolving BP. He is countering the hysteria from the media.

Coast Guard Commandant Thad Allen also referred to chocolate milk as the color of the emulsified oil-water mix. Taylor didn't say that goop was harmless. He said it was good news that it made up only 15% of the spill area and was still far from the marshes. The rainbow sheen that makes up the other 85% is already broken down quite a bit and is evaporating and biodegrading the longer it is out there in the open water. These Coast Guard guys are interested in describing the color because it signifies the composition and thickness of the oil/water mix.

Here is what a NOAA scientist said today:

“Definitely, the strong seas we've seen out there are good. ... Wave energy and sunlight will break up the oil,” said NOAA's Mr. Wesley, who was careful to say the oil slick's size may misrepresent its scale. It's a mix of fresh oil in a slick, tar balls of weathered oil, and sea water.

“[TV coverage] gives the impression that it's one big massive blob of oil out there, and it's not really like that,” Mr. Wesley said.

So the people who have actually seen and dealt with the oil spill say that the waves and sun are breaking down the oil. When the seas calm down, then the Coast Guard can go back to cleaning up the thicker stuff, aka the chocolate milk.

We are supporting the Coast Guard's efforts to prevent the oil from getting to the marshes, beaches, and estuaries. You guys and thousands like you are just going to have to be disappointed that it won't the catastrophe you want it to be.

Brian Martin said...

Also, Gene Taylor is a Democrat, not a Republican.

Wolfe Tone said...

Yeah, Brian.

He's a "Democrat."
A Blue-Dog, conservative, in the pocket of defense and shipping industries and law firms "Democrat."

Which means he's a DINO.

Broadway Carl said...

Oh, I stand corrected. A "Democrat" ... right.

And you still haven't responded to my original thought. You're reacting to this problem as if it's over. As I write, there are still thousands upon thousands of gallons of oil leaking into the ocean. And whether you believe it or not, it's headed our way. I would think that instead of trying to alleviate legitimate fears of your constituents, you'd give a realistic assessment of the situation.

No, Taylor didn't say that the goop was harmless, but he did say that people shouldn't be scared and that it would evaporate within a week. He's giving the impression that this is no big deal, and frankly, so are you. This includes your assumption that I'm an environmentalist (I don't consider myself as vigilant as true environmentalists so I won't pretend to be one) and your gross generalization that environmentalists "are cheering for the oil spill because you want this to end very badly for the coastal environment for political reasons. " That's got to be the sorriest thing I've heard in a long time.

Do you seriously believe that people are cheering about this horrible disaster? 11 dead, billions of dollars lost to rescue, cleanup and eventual restoration and you think that some are viewing this a good thing for political purposes? Spoken like a true DINO. If that's what you believe then quit and become a lobbyist and leave the politics to someone who cares about the country and the people living in it - tell your boss to do the same.

Broadway Carl said...

And no, Brian, you didn't hide your name, but you didn't disclose the fact that you work for the Congressman when defending him either.

Ethics. Learn them.

Brian Martin said...

The spill is being described as an indestructable tide of dark crude and it isn't true. Taylor spoke out because people were in a total panic. He saw the spill, described it as not as close or as thick as the hysterical media reporting, and coordinated with the Coast Guard and state and local officials to stop it before it gets to shore.
The AP story today says the slick is 1/3 smaller than it was Thursday because the waves and weather have broken it down.
Read your reply. You are rooting for the oil to do its worst. "It's not over." Do you have your rally cap on?
I didn't hide my identity. If I had said originally that I work for Taylor it merely would have reinforced that I know a lot more about what is going on in the Gulf than you do.

Wolfe Tone said...

Mr. Martin:
The "chocolate milk" and "rainbow sheen" which you and Rep. Taylor say proves the slick will "evaporate in a week" does not prove that at all.

Your statement underscores the fact that neither you or your boss really know much about oil spills.

During the Exxon Valdez (which spilled a dark, heavy sour North Slope crude, not the light sweet crude of the Gulf)), there was also a "rainbow sheen."

I know. I was there.

You can still, 20+ years later, turn over rocks on the shore of the "pristine" Prince William Sound and find crude oil under them.

No one is trying to create hysteria here, at least I'm not.

But your boss is acting as though it's nothing to worry about, and that's not only irresponsible, it's asshattery of the first order.

I'm not "rooting for the oil spill." I've lived through one, that until now, was the worst ever seen in North America.

I've seen firsthand the damage it does what it does, not only on an ecological level, but how it has shattered the lives on people.

Your arrogance is only exceeded by your ignorance and insensitivity.

Broadway Carl said...

Brian - Again you insult me by saying I am rooting for the oil spill. That is absolute insanity. I wish it never happened.

Please cite your sources for the "indestructible tide of dark crude." I haven't cited any such article or heard any such description. What I did say was that there has been no slow down of the 200,000 gallon per day leak. Therefore, it's not over. Is that wrong?

Also, it's pretty silly not to disclose that fact if you work for Taylor because you think it would enhance your bona fides and therefore your argument. We all know that the opposite is true. Disclosing your employment situation only shows your bias in protecting your congressman's statements.

Underestimating the possible damage of this disaster is irresponsible especially in light of the new story that government regulators downplayed the impact of a possible spill in a 2007 report. And while no one is certain of the impact this spill will have on the shore, reports I read say it's still too early to understand the total impact because of the fact that the leak hasn't stopped. So, no, as much as you want it to be over, it's not.

But I'm sure you'll be hearing from your fishing industry constituency calling your office soon enough if you haven't already. Tell them the truth. Tell them we just don't know yet.

Anonymous said...

Dear Brian,

Calling fellow Democrats "morons" seems self-defeating to a member of congress and his staff. Oil spill aside, opinions on how bad it is aside, etc, you speak for a member of the United States Congress. Calling fellow Americans morons is worthy of an apology at the least. If you can't keep your composure on a blog how can I trust that you can keep your composure while representing your constituents? If you can't represent your boss with civility, what does that say about your boss?


veralynn said...

Mr. Martin,

Calling Carl and other democrats morons is uncalled for and unacceptable. I understand the need for your boss to help alleviate the suffering of your constituents, but don't sugar coat it either. Part of our problem in this country is spin. You are doing your job spinning for your boss, I get that. I also get that we don't have a clue about what the long term damage to the community and the environment will be. And for you to say that Carl and Wolfe and other people who disagree with you, myself included, "are cheering for the oil spill because you want this to end very badly for the coastal environment for political reasons."

That pisses me off Mr Martin. How dare you. And as a democrat do not think that I won't email and call and write your boss to let him know what you have said. It is wrong and a tactic used by republicans. I really do expect better from the democrats in Congress. My God, you are OUR representatives!

Again Mr. Martin, I do understand the tough position your boss is in. Having said that, shame on you for treating us as the morons. We the people, eh Mr. Martin? Don't just say it Mr. Martin, live it. We will never get past this insane environment we are in and fix what needs to be fixed after the last 30 years. We have too much to fix to turn on each other. And when I say "each other", I mean ALL Americans.

Morons, indeed.