BP's feet must be delicious because they can't stop shoving them in their mouths.
British Petroleum CEO Tony Hayward has tripped over one stupidly insensitive gaffe after another and BP Chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg didn't want to be left out. Today Svanberg told reporters in Washington, D.C., "I hear comments sometimes that large oil companies are greedy companies or don't care, but that is not the case with BP. We care about the small people."
Here's the video, Svanberg drops his "small people" comment near the end, around the 4:47 mark:
Svanberg later apologized and said that he spoke "clumsily". To be fair to Svanberg, English is not his native language; he grew up in Sweden.
Even still, I don't think it was simply a verbal gaffe; it explains all too well what BP thinks of the people feeling the impact of the company's corner-cutting. The company runs its equipment until failure because it's cheaper —no matter that it's also much more polluting. BP will stall and drag its feet and pay out as little money as it can.
And how in the world can BP independently investigate itself? How could any corporation? Why do we let corporations that commit criminal acts investigate themselves? We don't let people who break the law investigate themselves, yet giant corporations more often than not get a pass. It's maddeningly frustrating.
In other Gulf news, the oil spill is forcing sea life into shallow waters. Scientists are saying large-scale die-offs could decimate their numbers.
BP is trading at 31.85 on the NYSE right now, off from around 60 right before the Deepwater Horizon exploded. I hope it keeps sliding all the way to 0. Chop up and sell off its assets, throw its executives in jail, and shutter the whole thing.