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BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!

 
DedHed
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BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time
By CLIFFORD KRAUSS

HOUSTON — BP’s renewed efforts at plugging the flow of oil from its runaway well in the Gulf of Mexico stalled again on Friday, as the company suspended pumping operations for the second time in two days, according to a technician involved with the response effort.

In an operation known as a “junk shot,” BP engineers poured pieces of rubber, golf balls and other materials into the crippled blowout preventer, trying to clog the device that sits atop the wellhead. The maneuver was designed to work in conjunction with the continuing “top kill” operation, in which heavy drilling liquids are pumped into the well to counteract the pressure of the gushing oil.

If the efforts succeeded, officials intended to pump cement into the well to seal it. But the company suspended pumping operations at 2:30 a.m. Friday after two “junk shot” attempts, said the technician, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the efforts.

The suspension of the effort was not announced, and appeared to again contradict statements by company and government officials that suggested the top kill procedure was progressing Friday.

Word of the suspension of top kill came as President Obama, accompanied by Admiral Thad W. Allen of the Coast Guard, the leader of the government effort, toured the region effected by the largest oil spill in U.S. history. Mr. Obama walked along a beach dotted with balls of tar in Port Fourchon and met with the governors of Louisiana, Florida and Alabama.

In Grand Isle, La., Mr. Obama said “we don’t know the outcome of the highly complex top kill procedure,” and added that if it was ultimately unsuccessful, experts were ready to intervene with alternative maneuvers.

Standing on the beach with local officials, Mr. Obama called the spill “an assault on our shores, the people, our regional economy. People are watching their livelihoods wash up on the beach.”

Mr. Obama said he was ordering an increase in manpower involved in the containment and cleanup effort in the Gulf Coast and sought to reassure area residents that “you that you are not alone, you will not be abandoned not left behind.” He added that even after the media may tire of the story, “we are on your side and we will see this through.”

Admiral Allen was accompanying President Obama on a tour Friday of the area. In Port Fourchon, the president and Admiral Allen were joined by the Lafourche parish president Charlotte Randolph. Mr. Obama walked along a beach dotted with balls of tar and covered with booms that looked like a line of cheerleader pom-poms strung together. Next, the president was heading Grand Isle for a formal briefing from Admiral Allen. The governors of Louisiana, Florida and Alabama are expected to join him there. As the president surveyed the damage and cleanup effort, the top kill effort continued.

Admiral Allen said Friday on ABC’s Good Morning America” that, “They’ve been able to push the hydrocarbons and the oil down with the mud.”

But the technician working on the effort said that despite the injections at various pressure levels, engineers had been able to keep less than 10 percent of the injection fluids inside the stack of pipes above the well. He said that was barely an improvement on Wednesday’s results when the operation began and was suspended in its 11th hour of operations. BP resumed the pumping effort Thursday evening for about 10 more hours.

“I won’t say progress was zero, but I don’t know if we can round up enough mud to make it work,” said the technician. “Everyone is disappointed at this time.”

Andrew Gowers, a BP spokesman, said he would not give “blow by blow commentaries.” He added, “the operation is by definition a series of phases of pumping mud and shooting bridging materials and junk and reading pressure gauges. It is going to keep going, perhaps 48 more hours.”

If the top kill and junk shots options fail, BP officials planned to try again to place a containment vessel over the leak, which might allow them to capture the oil but would not stop the leak. A previous attempt to do this failed.

Tony Hayward, BP’s chief executive, said on “Good Morning America” that efforts to plug the well were "going pretty well according to plan."

“Much of the volume you see coming out of the well in the last 36 hours is mud,” he said, referring to live video shots of the oil leak.

While he was optimistic, Mr. Hayward gave the effort a 60 percent to 70 percent chance of success because it had never been tried in water this deep.

“Those who think we were either slow on the response or lacked urgency, don’t know the facts,” Mr. Obama said. “This has been our highest priority.”

But he also blamed BP, which owns the stricken well, and the Bush administration, which he said had fostered a “cozy and sometimes corrupt” relationship between oil companies and regulators at the Minerals Management Service. Earlier Thursday, the chief of the Minerals Management Service for the past 11 months, S. Elizabeth Birnbaum, resigned, less than a week after her boss, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, announced a broad restructuring of the office.

Mr. Salazar on Friday said he would name Bob Abbey, the director of the department’s Bureau of Land Management, as interim director of the scandal-ridden agency responsible for oversight of offshore drilling.

Mr. Abbey, a longtime state and federal lands public lands official will run the agency as it is being dismantled over the next several months. Mr. Salazar announced last week that he intends to break the agency into three parts to handle leasing and oil extraction; safety and environmental oversight; and revenue collection. Currently all those functions are combined, leading to numerous conflicts of interests, with the same group of officials responsible for collecting fees from oil drilling on public lands and offshore while also policing their operations.Mr. Obama ordered a suspension on Thursday of virtually all current and new offshore oil drilling activity pending a comprehensive safety review, acknowledging that oversight until now had been seriously deficient.

Mr. Obama’s trip Friday to inspect the efforts in Louisiana to stop the leak and clean up after it, will be his second trip to the region since the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon rig on April 20. He will also visit with people affected by the spreading slick that has washed ashore over scores of miles of beaches and wetlands.

Even as Mr. Obama acknowledged that his efforts to improve regulation of offshore drilling had fallen short, he said oil and gas from beneath the Gulf, now about 30 percent of total domestic production, would be a part of the nation’s energy supply for years to come.

“It has to be part of an overall energy strategy,” Mr. Obama said. “I mean, we’re still years off and some technological breakthroughs away from being able to operate on purely a clean-energy grid. During that time, we’re going to be using oil. And to the extent that we’re using oil, it makes sense for us to develop our oil and natural gas resources here in the United States and not simply rely on imports.”

In the top kill maneuver, a 30,000-horsepower engine aboard a ship injected heavy drill liquids through two narrow flow lines into the stack of pipes and other equipment above the well to push the escaping oil and gas back down below the sea floor.

As hour after hour passed after the top kill began early Wednesday afternoon, technicians along with millions of television and Internet viewers watched live video images showing that the dark oil escaping into the gulf waters was giving way to a mud-colored plume.

That seemed to be an indication that the heavy liquids known as “drilling mud” were filling the chambers of the blowout preventer, replacing the escaping oil.

Thursday morning, federal officials expressed optimism that all was going well. “The top kill procedure is going as planned, and it is moving along as everyone had hoped,” Admiral Allen told CNN.

And Robert Dudley, BP’s managing director, said on the “Today” program on NBC that the top kill “was moving the way we want it to.”

It was not until late Thursday afternoon that BP acknowledged that the operation was not succeeding and that pumping had halted at 11 p.m. Wednesday.

After the resumption, Doug Suttles, BP’s chief operating officer for exploration and production, struggled to offer guidance on whether the latest effort was likely to succeed.

“It’s quite a roller coaster,” Mr. Suttles said. “It’s difficult to be optimistic or pessimistic. We have not stopped the flow.”

Engineers had feared the top kill was risky because the high-pressure mud could have punctured another gaping hole in the pipes, or dislodged debris clogging the blowout preventer and pipes and intensified the flow.

The engineers also said that the problem they encountered was not entirely unexpected, and that they believed that they would ultimately succeed.

Mr. Obama’s action halted planned exploratory wells in the Arctic due to be drilled this summer and planned lease sales off the coast of Virginia and in the Gulf of Mexico. It also halts work on 33 exploratory wells now being drilled in the gulf.

The impact of the new moratorium on offshore drilling remains uncertain. Mr. Obama ordered a halt to new leasing and drilling permits shortly after the spill, but Minerals Management Service officials continued to issue permits for modifications to existing wells and to grant waivers from environmental assessments for other wells.

Shell Oil had been hoping to begin an exploratory drilling project this summer in the Arctic Ocean, which the new restrictions would delay. Senator Mark Begich, Democrat of Alaska and a staunch supporter of drilling in the Arctic, said he was frustrated because the decision “will cause more delays and higher costs for domestic oil and gas production to meet the nation’s energy needs.”

“The Gulf of Mexico tragedy has highlighted the need for much stronger oversight and accountability of oil companies working offshore,” Mr. Begich said in a statement. “But Shell has updated its plans at the administration’s request and made significant investments to address the concerns raised by the gulf spill.”

Environmental advocates, however, expressed relief.

“We need to know what happened in the gulf to cause the disaster, so that a similar catastrophe doesn’t befall our Arctic waters,” said William H. Meadows, president of the Wilderness Society.

Admiral Allen on Thursday approved portions of Louisiana’s $350 million plan to use walls of sand in an effort to protect vulnerable sections of coastline.

The approved portion involves a two-mile sand berm to be built off Scofield Island in Plaquemines Parish — one of six projects that the Corps of Engineers has approved out of 24 proposed by Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana.

“What Admiral Allen told us today is that if the first one is effective, then they will consider moving on to the next one,” Mr. Jindal, a Republican, said at an afternoon news conference in Fourchon, La.

Investigators also continued their efforts to understand what caused the explosion of the rig, which killed 11 workers.

At a hearing in New Orleans, the highest ranking official on the Deepwater Horizon testified that he had a disagreement with BP officials on the rig before the explosion.

Jimmy Harrell, a manager who was in charge of the rig, owned by Transocean, said he had expressed concern that BP did not plan to conduct a pressure test before sealing the well closed.

It was unclear from Mr. Harrell’s testimony whether the disagreement took place on the day of the explosion or the previous day.

The investigative hearings have grown increasingly combative. Three scheduled witnesses have changed their plans to testify, according to the Coast Guard. Robert Kaluza, a BP official on the rig on the day of the explosion, declined to testify on Thursday by invoking his Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate himself.

Another top ranking BP official, Donald Vidrine, and James Mansfield, Transocean’s assistant marine engineer on the Deepwater Horizon, both told the Coast Guard that they had medical conditions.

Last Edited by Ghetto Monk on 05/28/2010 04:42 PM
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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05/28/2010 03:52 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
[link to www.nytimes.com]
Anonymous Coward
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05/28/2010 03:54 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
givedamn
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05/28/2010 03:56 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
these people are fucking morans and they have no clue how to fix this. A major hurricane will completely screw up their relief well operation.

we are fucked plain and simple. The human race deserves everything that happens to us and I suggest everyone be at peace with themselves.
DedHed (OP)
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05/28/2010 03:57 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
So, what's next? The 'Top Kill' has not worked....
guy369

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05/28/2010 04:00 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
So, what's next? The 'Top Kill' has not worked....
 Quoting: DedHed 836491


suicide
We are Stardust
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!

“I won’t say progress was zero, but I don’t know if we can round up enough mud to make it work,” said the technician. “Everyone is disappointed at this time.”

 Quoting: DedHed 836491
Anonymous Coward
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05/28/2010 04:01 PM
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THEY KEEP LYING! They said it was working this morning! IS ANYONE GOING TO BE ACCOUNTABLE FOR THIS??
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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05/28/2010 04:03 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
But the technician working on the effort said that despite the injections at various pressure levels, engineers had been able to keep less than 10 percent of the injection fluids inside the stack of pipes above the well. He said that was barely an improvement on Wednesday’s results when the operation began and was suspended in its 11th hour of operations. BP resumed the pumping effort Thursday evening for about 10 more hours.
 Quoting: DedHed 836491
Anonymous Coward
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05/28/2010 04:04 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
So, what's next? The 'Top Kill' has not worked....
 Quoting: DedHed 836491


if this is true they will try the junk shot as another smoke screen. continue to drill the relief wells. Meanwhile the gulf and its oil will continue to harbor the suns energy more than usual. A "katrina" type storm will devebunnypletely mess up the relief well effort, completely devastate the coastal region even further.....

meanwhile obama will continue to make the wrong decision, will fuck up the FEMA effort royally, and from that point on it is anyones guess.


I am a glass is half full drinking on an always partly sunny day, but this is just a bad situation if they have not yet stopped this leak.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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05/28/2010 04:09 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
bump
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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05/28/2010 04:15 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
The investigative hearings have grown increasingly combative. Three scheduled witnesses have changed their plans to testify, according to the Coast Guard. Robert Kaluza, a BP official on the rig on the day of the explosion, declined to testify on Thursday by invoking his Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate himself.
 Quoting: DedHed 836491


There's one name to add to the list for the hangin tree!
Anonymous Coward
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05/28/2010 04:17 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
Nuking that biatch looks more viable all the time.... It will turn the ground into glass & create a nice little plug..

5a
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05/28/2010 04:21 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
What's next is that they are going to cut the pipe so that it is a clean cut across the top. Then I'm not sure what they are going to do. I heard that on Science Friday.
Anonymous Coward
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05/28/2010 04:23 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
funny, some MSM is saying that the top kill worked, some saying no. Clearly, if they tried a junk shot in the middle of doing a kill shot, it's not working.
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05/28/2010 04:23 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
What's next is that they are going to cut the pipe so that it is a clean cut across the top. Then I'm not sure what they are going to do. I heard that on Science Friday.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 323774


The article mentions them going back to trying to use some kind of dome again, which just baffles the mind!
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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05/28/2010 04:28 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
If the efforts succeeded, officials intended to pump cement into the well to seal it. But the company suspended pumping operations at 2:30 a.m. Friday after two “junk shot” attempts, said the technician, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the efforts.

The suspension of the effort was not announced, and appeared to again contradict statements by company and government officials that suggested the top kill procedure was progressing Friday.

 Quoting: DedHed 836491
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05/28/2010 04:29 PM
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This is pin worthy!
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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05/28/2010 04:30 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
So, not only has the 'top kill' fail, but there's been two junk shot attempts that have failed too!
guy369

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05/28/2010 04:32 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
So, not only has the 'top kill' fail, but there's been two junk shot attempts that have failed too!
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 836491



Yea, and hundreds of thousands of gallons of toxic dispersants.
We are Stardust
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05/28/2010 04:40 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
When they stop pumping, does the mud come back up? Sounds like they have to start all over each time they stop.
guy369

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05/28/2010 04:42 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
When they stop pumping, does the mud come back up? Sounds like they have to start all over each time they stop.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 910903


I think while pumping - the gas builds up more and more pressure, until it's settled.
They stopped it, the pressure probably increased because it wasn't balanced and blew more and more holes and is now a lost cause.

solution - Evacuate the South, and some East coast people.
Use up to 200km from the coast as a world dump.

...And forget this ever happened.

...We can't fix this.
We are Stardust
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05/28/2010 04:44 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
these mother fuckers are really pissing me off..

yet again we've been lied to ALL DAY LONG!!
 Quoting: ^TrInItY^


yup ... this was the last day i was holding out ... i wanted to see the speech ... and now, we are fooked ...
Anonymous Coward
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05/28/2010 04:47 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
these mother fuckers are really pissing me off..

yet again we've been lied to ALL DAY LONG!!
 Quoting: ^TrInItY^

oh they have succeeded in their objectives......

BP set up as bumbling idiots, that can't even fix a leaky kitchen sink pipe.

Next phase of plan comes Tuesday.
Inita Richman

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05/28/2010 04:47 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
anybody else watching CNN right now? Supposedly the white house called and wanted to point out that just because the mud stopped pumping yesterday didn't mean nothing was going on.

UNBELIEVABLE
"It riles them to believe that you perceive the web they weave." (Moody Blues)
Anonymous Coward
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05/28/2010 04:49 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
anybody else watching CNN right now? Supposedly the white house called and wanted to point out that just because the mud stopped pumping yesterday didn't mean nothing was going on.

UNBELIEVABLE
 Quoting: Inita Richman


yeah, they tried to explain they can do many things while the mud isn't pumping ...

didn't mention suspending physics though
DedHed (OP)
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05/28/2010 04:49 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
This is fucking nuts! These people MUST be held accountable, people everywhere need to stand up and make them understand that this isn't something they can hide.

They've lied to us all day long, and now are admitting that even their backup plan has failed. This is it people stand up and shout!
DedHed (OP)
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05/28/2010 04:57 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
Thanks for the pin, People need to see we're being lied to!
Anonymous Coward
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05/28/2010 04:57 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
these mother fuckers are really pissing me off..

yet again we've been lied to ALL DAY LONG!!
 Quoting: ^TrInItY^

Remember what I said yesterday. The Kenyan Mao Mao had to get his photo op on the beach down there.
Rahmbo gave the orders to hire a fake cleanup crew and everything went as planned.
Nothing has changed.
It's not working.
Nobody is able to stop this in case you haven't figured that out yet.
Rhambo and the Kenyan Mao Mao are trying to find a way to save THEIR asses.
Inita Richman

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05/28/2010 04:57 PM
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Re: BP’s Effort to Plug Oil Leak Suspended a Second Time at 2:30 A.M. LAST NIGHT!!
Just now Wolf mentioned the stock manipulation aspect.

The fact that they didn't mention it yesterday until the market closed.

He said their stock is down 25%

If there is truth in that, then it's criminal!!
"It riles them to believe that you perceive the web they weave." (Moody Blues)
Anonymous Coward
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05/28/2010 04:59 PM
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TOTAL FAIL

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