More BP Gulf Oil Spill Conspiracies Flourish -- From Algae Farms to Armed Dolphins

Last Updated Jul 13, 2010 11:16 AM EDT

BP and the Obama administration have further restricted access to affected oil spill zones in the Gulf of Mexico. Weak approval ratings on handling clean-up efforts and media blackouts have only fanned the flames of conspiracy rumors circulating online. At the heart of it all is the burning question: Was the Deepwater Horizon explosion really an accident?

Of course it was. But that's not slowing down the conspiratorialists.

In addition to no-fly zones over oil spill waters, reporting on recovery efforts in the Gulf just got more challenging. On July 1, a new Coast Guard order went into effect, stating: "vessels must not come within 20 meters [65 feet] of booming operations, boom, or oil spill response operations under penalty of law." Violation of a "safety zone" could result in up to a $40,000 civil violation and prosecution for a Class D felony (sentencing from 2-7 years, depending on the state).

As Natural News editor Mike Adams puts it:
With this, the Gulf Coast cleanup operation has now entered a weird Orwellian reality where the news is shaped, censored and controlled by the government in order to prevent the public from learning the truth about what's really happening in the Gulf.
Does it require much of a stretch of the imagination to conclude, as does Adams, that the federal government is seeking to control our minds? With more questions than answers on the origins of the spill, many Internet bloggers espouse their own theories on the happenings in the depths of the Outer Continental Shelf.

"They (meaning the Obama administration and an industrial consortium ranging from BP to Goldman Sachs) don't want to clean it up or even try to contain it," posits conspiratorialist JoAnneMor on her eponymous blog. What's happening off the Louisiana coast wasn't from incompetence, but from a purposeful desire to spark growth in a nascent alt-renewable industry -- algae:
  • Destroy the offshore oil business in U.S. waters;
  • Turn the entire Gulf Coast and Mississippi Delta into a permanent "dead zone" -- certain coastal areas already demonstrate seasonal drops in oxygen levels, fueled by nutrient (fertilizer) runoffs into river tributaries. Excessive levels of oil and dispersant (the solvent Corexit) in spill-affected waters are accelerating hypoxia, permanently altering the ecosystem; and,
  • With an estimated refining cost of $2 per barrel, turning the Gulf ito a giant algae farm would make for a profitable "green" investment.
The plot doesn't start and end in Gulf waters. Steps have already been mapped out to convert the Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay into algae farms, too, alleges JoAnneMor. A new conspiracy plot being bandied about accuses BP of trying to tap the Earth's molten core for a novel source of geothermal power, using relief well drilling as cover for its real objective. Although heat from our planet's magma has been successfully harvested as an energy source, spudding through the outer core alone would require boring equipment capable of drilling to depths of 1,900 to 3,100 miles. As if hitting an oil reservoir located just three miles below the sea floor weren't already cause for concern!

Allgae and lava farms -- not all conspiracies theories making the rounds online ascribe the spill to greed and profit motives.To wit:
  • The April 20 explosion aboard the Deepwater Horizon rig was fated to happen, according to Numerology disciples: numbers 9 (total of letters in "BP oil spill in Gulf of Mexico" equals 27, or 2 + 7) and 11 (number of workers killed in the fire) are of metaphysical significance. Unfortunately, as I am still stuck in this three-dimensional world, the Procrustean logic behind this or tarot card reading is beyond my intellectual grasp -- would ingesting a bit of mind-altering peyote plant or magic (psilocybin) mushrooms would lead me down the path of enlightenment?
  • In 2005, armed dolphins, trained by the U.S. Navy to fire upon terrorists trying to infiltrate America via submarine, escaped from offshore pens breached during Hurricane Katrina. Some blogsters are convinced one or two of the marine mammals accidentally fired upon the Transocean-leased drilling rig.
  • Dark energy created during an experiment with the Large Hadron Collider (CERN - LHC), the proton-smashing, 'god-particle' seeking lab housed in a 27- kilometer (16 miles) tunnel deep underground near Geneva, Switzerland, escaped the facility and destabilized tectonic plates around the globe -- possibly weakening the sea floor around the Deepwater rig (or something like that). There is scant evidence to support more than a casual connection between the last CERN - LHC experiment in March and earthquake or volcanic activity.
BP has tried and failed nine times to completely plug the oil spewing from the ruptured Macondo wellhead. With upwards of 60,000 barrels of oil (2.5 million gallons) still gushing into Gulf waters, coupled with complaints by local officials in the Gulf region that most times they still don't know who's running the show -- the government or BP -- is it such a leap that Americans infer a surreptitious collusion by big government and big business? An impression, by the way, that's reinforced by "stiff-armed" moves to keep the public and the media away from containment efforts.

Most conspiracy debates could easily be settled -- if only President Obama and BP's CEO Tony Hayward lived up to their oft-repeated promises of "transparency." Instead, we are left with troubling questions on the worst environmental spill in U.S. history. A posting at The Economic Collapse best details many of the concerns begging for answers, including serious queries on First Amendment violations and clean-up workers' health:
  • Why is BP being allowed to use private security contractors to keep the American people away from the oil cleanup sites?
  • Why has the FAA shut down the airspace above the Gulf of Mexico oil spill? What don't they want the American people to see?
  • Why are so many Gulf oil spill disaster workers showing up at local hospitals complaining of a "mysterious illness?"
Here on Day 85 of the Gulf spill -- maybe I'll rummage through closets and look for that aluminum-foil, anti-mind control helmet of mine.

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  • David Phillips

    David Phillips has more than 25 years' experience on Wall Street, first as a financial consultant and then as an equity analyst for several investment banking firms. He sifts through SEC filings for his blog The 10Q Detective, looking for financial statement soft spots, such as depreciation policies, warranty reserves and restructuring charges. He has been widely quoted in outlets such as BusinessWeek, The International Herald Tribune, Investor's Business Daily, Kiplinger's Personal Finance, and The Wall Street Journal.

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