"Fool me eight times... Am I a F____g idiot?"

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That didn't take long.

Here's the GOP representative from Arlington Texas, Joe Barton (link):

"BP should bear the full financial responsibility for the accident on their lease in the Gulf of Mexico," Barton said in a written statement. "BP should fully compensate those families and businesses that have been hurt by this accident. BP and the federal government need to stop the leak, clean up the damage, and take whatever steps necessary to prevent a similar accident in the future." 

He added: “I regret the impact that my statement this morning implied that BP should not pay for the consequences of their decisions and actions in this incident."

Apologizing to BP was such a ridiculous stunt.  I'm not surprised to see Barton backing away from his statement.  As as aside, its pretty clear why he made the statement.  Here's 538 on his campaign contributors (link).

UPDATE:  The walk back is only a walk back from the words, not the intent of the statement.  Here's from Sullivan's blog (link).

Yes. They will attack anything.

So we all know that Obama got BP to agree to cut it's $10.5 billion annual dividend and set up a $20.0 billion fund to start paying out claims (link, link).  Apparently, this was a bad thing to do (Per TPM).

BP is ponying up $20 billion for Gulf Spill oil damages. And quite a few Republicans don't like it one bit.

Here is the usual list of suspects: link, link, link, link.  These guys are the leaders of party poised to win the next election.  Really.


Here's Barry Ritholtz on social security (link):

The issue of government debt seems to be coming up a lot news lately. Courtesy of the credit collapse and economic recession, Deficits are front page news. Classic balance budget advocates are reiterating their views, joined by hypocritical partisans who, after a decade of spending profligacy, unfunded tax cuts, new entitlement programs and a war of choice, have “suddenly” discovered the evils of borrowing.

Then there are the major entitlement programs: Social Security, Medicare and the Prescription Drug plan. These are, we are told, an even bigger problem then the ordinary budget deficit. As presently configured, the entitlement deficits are set to skyrocket as the boomers retire. Social Security especially is a target of persistent fear-mongering.

This is all unvarnished nonsense. Social Security is at present, financially stable; As it starts to run into increasing deficits, the political classes will be forced to respond.

To repeat a point re-iterated at length during the health care reform debate, the long run deficit is all about controlling the cost of health care (link, link, link, link, link, link, etc...).  If you care about long-run deficits, then figuring out how to contain these costs should be the focus of your attention.  All this other talk is just fear mongering.

No apologies

"I'm sorry" really isn't enough.

(Hat Tip: TPM)