Obama in Wonderland with the Oil Spill Commission

Hans von Spakovsky /

In its lead editorial yesterday, The Wall Street Journal pointed out the lack of scientific and engineering expertise of President Obama’s appointments to the seven-member “National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling,” as well as the obvious biases of a majority of its members who have either stated publicly their opposition to drilling or are members of organizations that oppose offshore drilling.  There is only one member with any engineering background at all, although her specialties are physics and optics.

Of course, it is hard to see how an expertise in optics is relevant to the complex engineering of oil exploration and drilling in the deep ocean, although the President has certainly shown an extraordinary obsession with the political optics of his administration’s handling of this environmental and economic disaster.  The Commission is chaired by former Democratic Senator Bob Graham, “who fought drilling off Florida throughout his career.”  His co-chairman is Republican William Reilly, the former president and chairman of the World Wildlife Fund, which brags on its website that “WWF helped to lead the successful effort to secure a moratorium on offshore oil and gas development in the Arctic.”