Top 2010 story: One most people have stopped following

At least it’s tops according to the Associated Press, which named the BP Gulf oil spill as the year’s No. 1 story. This, even though the predicted apocalypse for the coast’s ecology and economy has yet to materialize. (Well, except for the drilling moratorium the White House imposed through manipulation of scientific opinion — a “man-caused disaster” and “restoring science to its rightful place” two-fer!)

Here’s the AP’s explanation:

The April 20 explosion at a BP-leased rig killed 11 workers and unleashed a deep-sea spill that ultimately spewed at least 170 million gallons of crude into the Gulf. Consequences included devastation for fishing and tourism industries, a huge and costly cleanup effort, a management change at BP, and creation of a $20 billion fund to pay for damages.

The rest of the news wire’s top 10:

2. Health Care Overhaul

3. U.S. Elections

4. U.S. Economy

5. Haiti Earthquake

6. Tea Party Movement

7. Chile Mine Rescue

8. Iraq

9. WikiLeaks

10. Afghanistan

(The AP’s explanations for the others are at the link above.)

Me? I’d have chosen the elections. The great “shellacking” of 2010 tied into the health-care overhaul, the economy and the tea party movement — as well as the oil spill, to the degree that it undermined the Obama administration’s reputation for competence — and it represents the most compelling storyline that continues into 2011.

Your thoughts?

– By Kyle Wingfield

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38 comments Add your comment


December 22nd, 2010
11:17 am

For me, here’s the order….

1. US Economy
2. BP Oil Spill (can’t get good oysters yet!)
3. U.S. Elections
4. Health Care Overhaul (a positive first step)
5. Haiti Earthquake
6. Chile Mine Rescue
7. Tea Party
8. Iraq/Afghanistan (they’re not mutually exclusive)
9. Obama’s meeting his campaing promises (he’s at 80%)
10. WikiLeaks


December 22nd, 2010
11:21 am

“restoring science to it’s rightful place”

Kyle, it’s no secret all you right-wingers are afraid of and do not understand science. Naturally, you prefer Corporate witchcraft any old day. And, the jury is still out on the oil spill.


December 22nd, 2010
11:33 am

Kyle, you sound like people that don’t think cigarettes cause cancer because they’ve smoked for twenty years and they don’t have it yet. Millions of gallons of oil poured into the gulf. we don’t even know where it went much less the long term consequences. However, if your sure the stuff is harmless, drink a quart or two of the stuff and get back to us with your scientific findings.


December 22nd, 2010
11:39 am

Man, if that’s the top stories, then I must be from the brown dwarf formerly known as Pluto. Lady Gaga is the top news story for 2010. Then it was Tiger’s comeback. Then Vick’s. Then Uga’s DUI. Then Taylor Swift’s poor manners when she failed to turn over her award to Beyonce at Mr. West’s request.

Then it was the price of Bush’s book. ($350). Then it was the big line from Keith Richard’s book, “I hate Mick Jagger because he thought he was bigger than the Stones.

Nobody’s bigger than the Stones, man.



December 22nd, 2010
11:40 am


get out much?

December 22nd, 2010
11:49 am

What I find interesting is how quiet the “tort reform” choir is in regards limiting BP’s liability from the spill. It looks to me like the perfect test case for them.


December 22nd, 2010
11:55 am

Get out much: Tort reform does not equal “very limited liability in every single situation no matter what.” That’s a strawman argument you made, no supporter of tort reform has ever that all liability in every situation must be extremely limited.

A lot of what tort reform is about is changing the system so that when a suit happens, the people involved are the beneficiaries, not the lawyers. In many suits these days, especially the really big ones, the lawyers are the only real winners. Since you mock the idea of reform, obviously you are happy that lawyers make all the money when someone sues someone else for a legitimate reason.

A Hearty Cheese Sauce

December 22nd, 2010
11:57 am

BP was muchado about nothing. And now we have ObaManure regulating sex.

How sweet.


December 22nd, 2010
12:32 pm


December 22nd, 2010
11:17 am

9. Obama’s meeting his campaing promises (he’s at 80%)

HDB – you and I must not be listening to the same man. The following videos document the promises you say he has kept, but the footage shows he has not. Do the words “transparency”, “earmark reform” “pay as you go budgeting”, “5 day review period”, “no pork” mean anything to you. How do you justify these promises being made while he campaigned and being broken after he was elected?

Kyle Wingfield

December 22nd, 2010
12:35 pm

carlosgvv: “Restoring science to its rightful place” was a line from President Obama — whose administration, rather than heeding science, misrepresented the opinions of scientists in justifying an oil-drilling moratorium. That’s what I was referring to.

marko: You’re right that we don’t yet know the long-term consequences; how could it be any other way? But what we can tell in the short term is that the most alarmist predictions of doom have, so far, not been correct. That doesn’t mean there’s no damage.

I recommend this article as an example of what I’m talking about — things aren’t peachy-keen, but they’re a long way from the forecasts of disaster:


December 22nd, 2010
12:45 pm

I will go with the economy/tea party movement as one issue. I do not believe they can be separated.

But I am becoming concerned that the tea party is at war against nickel and dime stuff. I see no discussion of canceling Bush’s Medicare Part D program that will cost us $727.3 billion between 2009 and 2018. (Latest figure I have.) Heck, we could fight a pretty good war on half of this amount. This program is a deficit albatross around our necks.

There is discussion within tea party ranks of maybe trying to cancel the Obamacare bill. But that bill is not costing the government anything to operate. It is deficit neutral per the CBO.

And apparently the tea party has killed the earmarks of $8 billion in the FY 2011 spending bill just moved to a 2011 vote. While I salute the ending of the $8 billion in earmarks, I would have preferred to end Medicare Part D and save the $727.3 billion.

Kyle Wingfield

December 22nd, 2010
12:57 pm

jconservative: Don’t forget that the new members haven’t taken office yet. But you’re right that they ought to be talking about these kinds of things.

And don’t forget, too, that when the perennial Medicare “doc fix” is included, ObamaCare is actually $59 billion in the red over 10 years. Writing the law so that CBO had to score it without the doc fix — when no one in the entire world believed Congress would actually break that habit — was an enormous bit of accounting fraud, or at least false advertising, on the Dems’ part.

Port O'John

December 22nd, 2010
12:58 pm

I think Kyle believes we should apologize to BP.

After all, they are a corporation and we all know that corporations never, ever, put profits over things like the environment, jobs or paying taxes. While all those fishermen, shrimpers, oystermen, etc., are just a bunch of lazy crooks who would rather sponge off of BP than actually work for a living.

Kyle Wingfield

December 22nd, 2010
12:59 pm

As was, of course, beginning the taxation ahead of the spending, so that more years of revenue than years of spending were counted in the CBO score.

Ragnar Danneskjöld

December 22nd, 2010
1:16 pm

Good afternoon all. I think my top 10 list would start with a couple of supreme court rulings, reaffirmations of the plain language of the 1st and 2nd amendments, (1) Citizens United vs FEC and (2) DC v Heller.
My third would be the IPad.
My fourth would be the FCC’s late effort to shackle the internet.
After that I would go with (5) the Tea Party and then (6)Afghanistan, then the suddenly precarious-legality of (7) ObamaCare, (8) the manifest failure of the Stimulus, (9)the historic swing in the US house of representatives and state legislatures, and (10) the US bank on oil drilling in the eastern Gulf of Mexico.
Just missing my list is the world-wide glut in natural gas.


December 22nd, 2010
1:36 pm

actually, many people have forgotten that the emerging story in the Gulf was how the Obama administration failed to address it in time. It was rapidly developing into Obama’s Katrina, or so we were being told. When the disaster failed to materialize, the focus changed to how the silly scientists overcalled the potential harm that was done.

Personally, I think the jury is still out on the effects of all that oil in the Gulf.


December 22nd, 2010
2:01 pm

I think the Chilean miner story was overblown. It wasn’t THAT interesting.

Also, I think the elections ranks higher if you are a Republican or more conservative because you are likely to see it as good news that you want to follow and lower if you are Democrat or more liberal because that story is just a depressing and frustrating one that you just want to tune out.

For me, I would rank the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell in the top 10 and take out the miner story. I would also combine the Tea Party movement with the elections as one story and put the Republicans’ sinking of the Dream Act as a top story. It’s a story of Republicans preventing patriotic and hard-working people from joining our ranks as citizens. Absolutely shameful. There is also an argument that DADT, New Start, the Tax Deal, and the Dream Act could be wrapped up in the story of the Lame Duck session … aka the last legislative hurrah of Obama’s first term.


December 22nd, 2010
2:28 pm

Health care is here to stay, and well needed.

get out much?

December 22nd, 2010
2:47 pm

Jimmy62 – actually, the goal of tort reform is to eliminate the profit incentive for the attorneys. If there is no money to be made, no lawyer will be willing to bring your suit to trial, regardless of legitimate your claim is.

No More Progressives!

December 22nd, 2010
2:54 pm


December 22nd, 2010
11:21 am
“restoring science to it’s rightful place”

Kyle, it’s no secret all you right-wingers are afraid of and do not understand science. Naturally, you prefer Corporate witchcraft any old day. And, the jury is still out on the oil spill.

Another NASA scientist out on the loose.

Explain pH to us, Dr. Rocket Scientist.

JF McNamara

December 22nd, 2010
3:27 pm

Kyle didn’t want to stop drilling so that we could make sure all the other wells didn’t have the same problems and assess the impacts without further risks? Not to mention the fact that we don’t know what the impacts will be. By the way, what exactly did the moratorium cost us? We checked the wells and it had virtually no impact, yet you still complain.

Even if healthcare costs us $60 Billion over 10 years, its nowhere near what the tax cuts will cost us over two ($700B). At least with healthcare, I will see a tangible benefit instead of just getting lied to and manipulated about economic growth.

The Tea Party is a joke. I’ll make an Art Laffer bet that by this time next year their members will get earmarks or “redefine the definition” so that they can still get pork and they won’t even be in mainstream conversation anymore.


December 22nd, 2010
3:29 pm

I laugh in the general direction of the t-reps….hardy har har har.


December 22nd, 2010
3:36 pm

Kyle: “And don’t forget, too, that when the perennial Medicare “doc fix” is included, ObamaCare is actually $59 billion in the red over 10 years. Writing the law so that CBO had to score it without the doc fix — when no one in the entire world believed Congress would actually break that habit — was an enormous bit of accounting fraud, or at least false advertising, on the Dems’ part.

Actually, Kyle is the one committing fraud by conflating the doc fix with the Affordable Care Act.

“In 1997, the Republican Congress created a payment formula meant to govern Medicare called the Sustainable Growth Rate. The formula was supposed to be a little tweak that saved a couple billion dollars. But the formula was wrong, and it quickly proved a wrenching readjustment that would’ve driven physicians out of the program by sharply slashing their payments. But rather than undo it, Republicans in Congress, and then Democrats when they took over Congress, passed temporary fixes, because no one wanted to come up with the money to fix the thing permanently.

When health-care reform started, Democrats made an admirable effort to end the shell game and just fix the system. But doing so cost almost $300 billion, and Republicans, who caused this mess in the first place, attacked the Democrats’ fix as if it was part of their health-care reform plan rather than part of the Balanced Budget Act that Republicans passed in 1997. So Democrats abandoned the effort and left the fix out of health-care reform.”

Kyle Wingfield

December 22nd, 2010
3:48 pm

CJ, the point is that ObamaCare’s assumptions about the costs to the federal government are based on the notion, which we all know to be false, that the doc fix will end. It’s not that I’m conflating the two, or arguing that ObamaCare should have included a permanent solution to the SGR. It’s that Dems embedded the (fictitious) savings from ending the doc fix in the law to artificially lower its cost projection.

But you’ve never accepted that before, so I don’t know why I’d expect you to accept it now…


December 22nd, 2010
3:57 pm

The top story of 2010 is the continuation of the transformation of America from a republic into a socialist country. We’ve seen our auto industry, the largest insurance company in the world (AIG), our financial sector, student loans & our health care system taken over by the govt. We’ve seen auto company investors & dealers thrown under the bus along with the oil companies. Dems. threw each other under the bus to get bills passed. States are being targeted for defending their citizens & states are defending their rights as states.
Congress is out of control but what it can’t control is being controlled by czars & federal agencies. The EPA will control our energy, the FCC will control the internet & the Edu. Dept. is controlling our children.
The fed. govt. can’t control itself but it thinks it needs to control everything from what we drive to what we eat, especially our children. The fed. govt. spent every penny we sent to DC. It did not care if it was intended for the elderly & the sick since our children would pay for it. The Dems. have added over $5T to the debt since 1/07. Now, the Federal Reserve is printing money out of thin air.
The socialists/progressives have come out of the closet. They hate small businesses but bailed out Wall Street. They want to control salaries as well as the prices of goods & services.
Corruption in DC is rampant. Lobbyists rule. Lawmakers receive back an average of 10 to 20% from their earmarks in the form of campaign contributions from companies receiving the earmarks. Lawmakers use other earmarks to bribe each other to vote for unpopular bills, many of which are unconstitutional, passed, unread, thousands of pages, outside of business hours.
Voter registration & elections are corrupt.
There’s an incestuous relationship between the Dems. & union bosses.
People who work are undeserving.
The American people were excited but became disappointed, then disgusted, then angry. Right after the passage of the $1T stimulus bill, Americans began protesting in the streets. The Tea Party members were called every name in the book by the liberal left & their media. Union bosses bused their members to private homes, businesses & across state lines in attempts to intimidate.
The country has never been so divided: liberals against conservatives, blacks against whites, middle income earners against high income earners, Main St. against Wall St., consumers against companies, the Dem. elites against constitutional rights, liberty & freedom.
Debt, unemployment, foreclosures, corruption, jealousy, lies, division, inflation.


December 22nd, 2010
4:08 pm

1) snooki
2) glenn beck
3) the situation
4) oprah’s lst yr
5) larry king’s last yr
6) gwinnett is great sign going down


December 22nd, 2010
4:17 pm

One interesting story is actually a lack of a story, that is, there hasn’t been another 911. It means that Obama is a great president for intercepting Al Queda plots for two years now.

Obama is the best commander in chief since Ike.


December 22nd, 2010
4:48 pm

I like this story that just came out (although those of use who pay attention knew this for years):

Communist Party USA Reveals: We’re Using the Democrat Party

How do progressives get to continue to deny what their more ardent fellows freely and proudly admit to?


December 22nd, 2010
5:00 pm

CJ, the point is that ObamaCare’s assumptions about the costs to the federal government are based on the notion, which we all know to be false, that the doc fix will end…Dems embedded the (fictitious) savings from ending the doc fix in the law to artificially lower its cost projection.


You’re writing things that are entirely false. You are conflating the two, and you’re taking advantage of the fact that both issues are related to Medicare to deliberately confuse readers with the senseless notion that the cost of the doc fix, a Republican invention arising out of a problem they created, should be applied to savings arising out of the Affordable Care Act.

Truth be told, the doc fix doesn’t really have a cost at all. The “costs” associated with it are just unrealized savings arising out of the fact that Republicans screwed the pooch on their Medicare payment formula. We should just make the “doc fix” permanent and find another way to save $300 billion, or perhaps, eliminate the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy (or both).

Road Scholar

December 22nd, 2010
5:15 pm

It’s the economy, stupid! Deja vu all over again!

I Report (-: You Whine )-: mmm, mmmm, mmmmm! Just sayin...

December 22nd, 2010
5:26 pm

Listen to the Urinal whine-

BAGHDAD — Parliament swore in a new Iraqi government Tuesday after nine months of bitter political haggling, solidifying the grip that Shiites have held on political power since Saddam Hussein’s ouster while leaving open the question of whether the country’s disgruntled Sunni minority will play a meaningful role.

The new government led by incumbent Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki got off to a shaky start as disagreements among coalition partners prevented al-Maliki from naming some of his more than 40 Cabinet ministers .

We won, you lost, grow up, just sayin…


December 22nd, 2010
5:49 pm

@Kyle, I tend to agree with CJ on the Doc Fix…that would have happened with or without new legislation and the $59 billion would have been spent either way right?

As for the story of the year?????? Do we have to have one. Kind of an off year really.

BP and The Gulf was apparently overblown a bit, though lots could still happen.

Yeah there was a bit of a shift in the composition of the legislature…but is that a swing to the Republicans any more than 06 and 08 were swings to the Dems? Maybe the story is the electorate…its fickleness and inability to make a decision that lasts more that 2 to 4 years.

If pushed to vote I would go with the economy, playing up the fact that we averted a pretty large disaster. Maybe we learned a lesson?


December 22nd, 2010
8:46 pm

1) Hope
2) Change
3) Working for the good of the Country
6 911 Responders Healthcare
7) Obamacare
8) Madonna survived menopause
9) John McCain survived menopause
10) Atlanta Falcons

Finn McCool

December 22nd, 2010
9:28 pm

I want pictures of Kyle swimming in the Gulf and drinking full glasses of that untouched water.


December 22nd, 2010
10:08 pm

The real story at the end of 2010 is what the top story will be in 2011. Unfortunately, the picture is bleak.
States & municipalities have reached a point that the deals struck between has-been Dem. lawmakers (for votes) & union bosses can’t be fulfilled. States & municipalities will need to go bankrupt. The fed. govt. is broke. The newly elected Reps., prompted by Tea Party members & wide-awake voters, will not be in favor of bailing out any more entities, especially states that spent money like DC. Bailing out debt with more debt is not sustainable. There will be no more bailouts, adding to the debt, borrowing money or printing money. Reps. will deem that taxpayers in states such as Georgia should not bail out CA, ILL &/or NY, who were not as fiscally responsible. Austerity measures will go into place across the country, resulting in layoffs, service cuts & canceled projects & contracts. Retired teachers, firefighters, police officers & other govt. workers will take to the streets (sort of like the Tea Parties that liberals found repulsive). Employed teachers, firefighters, police officers & other govt. workers will strike. Prisoners will be released. Crime will be rampant. All citizens, especially our children, will suffer.
Thousands of pages of regulations from Obamacare, the finance bill, etc. will continue to go into effect, causing more fear from businesses. Citizens will loose their health care & doctors. Marginal tax rates will expire in 2 yrs., causing a mere temporary bridge to employment incentives. Unemployment will continue at unprecedented rates & Dems. will continue to demonize small businesses. Consumer/business confidence is temporary & will lead to fear as expirations approach. Mountains of debt + paralyzing fear + strict austerity measures = deflationary pressure + financial markets that seize up.
Stimulus measures the Obama adm. tried will be in reverse.
The crisis in Greece will spread to Spain (the “green” machine Obama touted) & to other countries in Europe & eventually to the US.
The default rate for commercial mortgages is just beginning & will explode in 2011. Residential foreclosures will continue at an alarming rate, to the tune of trillions of dollars that the government-sponsored entities have guaranteed, all added to the national debt. The national debt will rise in 2011 to $15 T, at least.
The US govt. will loose its Aaa bond rating.
The US govt. will loose its creditors.
Our interest rates will spike, causing more defaults on ALL loans.
The stock market will loose BIG TIME. Gold prices will soar.
Inflation will be the norm, beginning with anything wheat-related.
The dip, recession, depression, whatever you call it, & unemployment will last for years.

The world-wide economic recession stated with the passage of the 1992 Government Sponsored Entities Act in the name of Affordable Housing by the Dems. It was the catalyst.


December 23rd, 2010
9:12 am

G-d bless the lame duck Congress!


December 23rd, 2010
10:21 am

I think jimmy johnsons 5th consecutive championship should beinthe top 5


December 23rd, 2010
2:13 pm

Also left out – dueling rallys of Glenn Beck and Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert’s Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear.