Ken, Ken, Ken…
Can I call you Ken?
I feel that since I’ve been writing about you so much these past few months that I’ve almost gotten to know you, not in that best friends at summer camp kind of way, but more like a co-worker, a co-worker I don’t care for very much. You know, that person in the office who you feel isn’t carrying their weight, and while slacking off goes on an on about what a great job they are doing? It’s the co-worker in the office everyone keeps looking to the bosses about, wondering why this person doesn’t get fired, reprimanded, something…so yeah, I think I’ll call you Ken…
It’s still the transparency.
I know you felt that by releasing your payment methodology, this would all get cleared up, but it hasn’t and there’s a reason for this. You see, you’ve become such an ugly figure in this BP Gulf Coast catastrophe that really, nobody beleives the things you say anymore. They haven’t for a long time. You don’t have credibility anymore, Ken. Any last shred of that was wiped clean away when Judge Barbier ruled you were not independent of BP. Yep, that day, any ability you had left to be taken at your word was buried six feet down and the gravestone was slammed home.
So, when you say things like 80 percent of pending oil spill claims don’t have enough documentation, an eyebrow gets raised. And then when you put out on your website a warning that claimants could risk being denied payment entirely because of this…up goes the other eyebrow.
Ken, when the Judge says you work for BP, when everyone and their mother on the Gulf Coast thinks you and the GCCF are a sham, set up to save BP as much of their trust fund as possible, it doesn’t matter anymore if these feelings are the truth. The perception is stronger, and that perception is that you are stalling this thing out, that you are indeed trying to save money, that you are an unscrupulous lawyer who has been trying to fuck the Gulf Coast since all you’re initial promises fell apart six months ago.
People don’t trust you.
Want an example of why?
Here’s one from the Sun Herald:
“(Attorney General Jim) Hood and other Gulf attorneys general have been pushing claims administrator Ken Feinberg to allow them access to claim records so they can determine whether claims are being fairly handled. So far, they have been denied that access because of confidentially concerns.
Hood said he recently served Feinberg with a civil investigative demand, which is a subpoena, for access to GCCF computer and paper records. Feinberg has 30 days to respond to the demand. Feinberg declined Thursday to comment on the matter.
“Really, all we want to do is audit what he’s done and then monitor it going forward,” Hood said. The attorney general said he is willing to sign a confidentiality clause in order to audit the records.”
Hood went on to say that you’ve been promising him access for a couple of months, but when he started working with you guys at the GCCF, they started telling him “No.”
That’s a problem, Ken.
I am sure you will maintain, as you’ve said, that you are just trying to maintain confidentiality but here’s the problem with this… As Mr. Hood said, he’ll sign a confidentiality clause, but also, you’ve said that when this is all said and done you are turning over all these records to British Petroleum. An Attorney General is not to be trusted, but British Petroleum is?
Why, because of their proven track record on ethics?
You maintain that the whole GCCF process has been “ideal,” and something to measure all other claims processes by in the future. Seems this is something you’d want the opportunity to show someone, just once…or maybe not, maybe your process is only ideal to British Petroleum? The perception created by your actions is you’ve got something to hide, and this leads people to wonder what that might be.
I wonder if the documentation problem isn’t with the claimants. I wonder if the documentation problem is actually yours. But, maybe not…go ahead Ken, prove us all wrong. Open your books and let Mr. Hood take a look, what have you got to lose?
Certainly, not your credibility.
Have a nice day.