Carol Platt Liebau
It should be obvious to everyone at this point that BP must and should compensate the United States for harm done by the oil spill.  And obviously, if there's evidence of crimes, they should be prosecuted.

How typical, however, that even as the Obama administration dithers about Governor Jindal's request to build sand berms to protect against some of the worst effects of the spill, the Obama Justice Department is busily grandstanding, threatening BP with criminal sanctions.

That's great . . . and just about what you'd expect from an administration led by a lawyer/academic.  Don't do anything -- just take someone to court! 

So now, rather than being able to focus 100% on remediating the disaster, BP can start worrying about protecting itself legally from criminal sanctions -- and as everyone should know by now, playing legal CYA is a major distraction at a time when BP should be focusing on fixing the problem.  Incidentally, the grandstanding also drove the market way down.

But hey, none of that worries the Obama administration.  They realize they must be seen to be doing something, anything, to convince the public that they're "in charge."  So now -- six weeks after the disaster -- out they come with legal guns blazing.

Are we all really supposed to sit back and say, "Well played, gentlemen"?


Carol Platt Liebau

Carol Platt Liebau is an attorney, political commentator and guest radio talk show host based near New York. Learn more about her new book, "Prude: How the Sex-Obsessed Culture Hurts Young Women (and America, Too!)" here.