Jun 24, 2010

Every tar ball is an opportunity

It's hard to find inspiration in the oily muck washing around the Gulf of Mexico, but BP is trying. The company has hired a pair of writers, dubbed "BP journalists," to find, as the New Orleans Times-Picayune puts it, the "silvery sheen in the dark cloud of oil."

Unlike most journalists, these "reporters" are not allergic to positive news when it comes to spinning a tragic event. Instead, BP's Paula Kolmar and Tom Seslar have removed the blinders of cynicism and honesty to wax poetic about the cleanup effort. Here's Kolmar on the gift the oil spill has given her:
I saw the skimmers. I saw the relief well drill ships. I saw the support vessels circling the incident site. It was indeed a sobering privilege.
Indeed, she goes on to talk about the "ballet at sea as mesmerising as any performance in a concert hall, and worthy of an audience in its own right." It's enough to make one wonder why Louisianans are having all the fun.

In his travels, Seslar has discovered that Gulf residents see their plight as merely a reflection of what BP is going through:
Paul, a well-spoken man supplementing his Social Security income by driving a Houston taxi, sees BP’s current image challenges as similar to what he faces all day long.
Haven't we all suffered the proverbial failure of our blowout preventer?

Ryan Chittum at Columbia Journalism Review has compiled even more of these paeans to gushing crude.

1 comment:

Rory said...

kinda reminds me of how FOX NEWS used to always complain about how there were never any positive stories about the iraq war in the media.