About Constancio Asumen, Jr.
Mr. Asumen has most recently assumed the responsibilities of
Chairman-of-the-Board for ACE LILACS, a budding startup venture
in the marketplace of ideas. The list of previous vocations he
had engaged in before this, includes being a farmer, fisherman,
stevedore, national scholar, college professor, journeyman
laborer, freelance scribe, typesetter, proofreader, systems
analyst, software developer, cab driver, etc. He holds a masters
degree in Mineral Science & Technology (1973, Kyoto University)
with a major in Exploration Geophysics. Somewhat of the
quintessential Ivy League under-achiever, he is an embodiment of
the can-do attitude so prevalent amongst most first generation
Americans. He is an ardent adherent to the tenet that anything
worth doing is worth doing well. Mr. Asumen maintains a
Incidental Lessons from Fluid Mechanics
Search for Governing Virtues
Slouching Out of National Dyslexia
Dissonant & Delusional: The Activist Ideologue
Obama’s Contempt: Vestige of His Incompetence
Technology: A Poverty of Philosophy
Warming: The Religion that Failed
Does Not a Science Make
Parallels & Intersections
Repugnant Obama Paradigm
The Myth of
How Lucky Can You Get?
Assimilation Overkill Begets Bigotry
Incidental Lessons from Fluid Mechanics
June 19, 2010
built a wall I'd ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offence.
And he likes having thought of it so well
He says again, "Good fences make good neighbors."
Robert Frost, Mending Walls
boy! He has seen the danger,
shouting a wild alarm,
back the weight of the sea
strength of a single arm!
He sees no
hope, no succor,
voice is lost;
never thinks he can leave the place
holds him fast.
Phoebe Cary (1824-1871), The Leak in the Dike
legendarily celebrated lore hero of the Netherlands of yore had his instincts
right. In order to avert disaster, one has to plug the leak by whatever means,
even at the risk of life and limb. This common-sense derived pedestrian logic
ever so familiar to any housewife who has to deal with an over flowing bath tub,
has been apparently lost to those delegated the draconian tasks of capping the
oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Those charged with stopping the flow of
undocumented illegal travelers, a.k.a. illegal aliens, across the Mexican border
can likewise learn from Peter’s impeccable inklings.
two situations, I hazard to argue, and prove if needs be, that the oil gush is
more benign than the porous border. Moreover, the ultimate solution to the
porous border needs to learn from the solution to the oil spill for it to be
enduringly viable. These are some of the pertinent wherefores.
with, it behooves to examine the objective parameters of both situations. These
constitute the configuration of forces and factors that are in play and need to
be put under control. In contrast, the subjective parameters constitute the
totality of knowledge and quality of human talent that are brought to bear to
furnish the solution. Obviously, both the oil spill and the porous border
require the deployment of appropriate configuration of subjective parameters to
arrive at a viable and lasting solution.
the drilling breach involves dealing with primarily the laws of physics. Besides
the chemical composition of the effluent which influences such properties as
viscosity and specific gravity, ambient factors as pressure, temperature, wind
and water currents, seabed dynamics, and the vagaries of the weather are crucial
components to the solution.
complications stem from the fact that there are three levels of ambient physical
parameters to deal with. Moreover, all three environs, namely, the sea surface,
the body of the water itself, and the seafloor are mutually interactive with one
another. Each one of them may require a specific arsenal of specialized skills
and knowledge, with the necessary overlap to meet the demands inherent to
the border walling problem involves a seemingly simpler land-surface condition.
However, the treachery of the human wit becomes a major component to the
objective problem. This is not even a remotely quantifiable entity and arguably
proves elusive to traditional engineering solutions.
Some of the
factors typically considered in planning for an
offshore drilling operation have been documented as follows:
selecting drilling equipment for a project...consideration must be given to the
weather conditions, water depths, drilling depths, rig mobility, availability
and logistics of moving materials and supplies, means of transportation and
numerous lesser considerations.”
history dating as far back as 1940, offshore drilling technology can certainly
be considered as relatively mature. This is borne out by the following
2009 statistics when deep water and ultra deep water accounted for an
aggregate of about 45% compared to 35% accounting for onshore finds:
(DW) and ultra deepwater (UDW) combined are becoming the predominant source of
new oil and gas discoveries. From 2005 through 2009, giant and significant
deepwater discoveries of oil and gas (41 Bboe [billion barrels oil equivalent],
2P reserves) were made . . .
According to IHS, 2P reserves (proven plus probable) represent a 50%
confidence level that the reported level is in-place and recoverable.”
drilling project I could find on
record reveals, among others, the following pertinent statistics (1968 to
Deepest penetration beneath the ocean floor
Maximum penetration into basaltic crust
Deepest water (Leg 60 Site 461A)
Griscom Little, writing in 2007 for
Wired Magazine on Chevron’s Cajun Express facility volunteered the
following instructive tidbits (my emphases):
world of ultradeep-sea drilling [is] the newest, riskiest, and most
technologically extreme drilling frontier. Today, deep-sea rigs are capable of
reaching down 40,000 feet, twice as deep as a decade ago: plunging their drills
through 10,000 feet of water and then 30,000 more feet of seabed. One
platform sits atop each so-called field, thrusting its tentacles into
multiple wells dug into ancient sediment, slurping out oil, and then pumping
it back to onshore refineries through underwater pipelines.”
emphasis was added as a brief but cogent reminder that
directional drilling, as the stressed operation is referred to in technical
parlance, has been in the marketplace since the early 1990’s. The need to drill
for oil further offshore and in ever deeper waters was resultant to our
surrender to the lunacies of the environmental movement. The point about
directional drilling is, drilling tangentially and even horizontally, you can
locate the rig in shallower waters, where bottom ambient physical conditions are
less treacherous, and let the drilling go out to sea, or whichever direction you
need or want to go.
point is that the environmental movement’s fanaticism respecting pristine
ecology prevents the oil industry from drilling right in our backyards, if need
be. With the advent of directional drilling, it was not a matter of necessity
that drilling had to be done vertically offshore. Rather the industry’s focus on
offshore sites is an attempt at a painless avoidance of the onslaught of
litigations, starting with getting the initial permits, from the environmental
activists, co-opted into the bureaucracy especially at the radicalized
Environmental Protection Agency.
that cannot be over emphasized is that the failure to stop the plume is not a
failure in technology but a failure to deploy the appropriate complement of
available Offshore Technologies that would be equal to the problem. To
illustrate with imagery from the movie,
Die Hard, the pathetic attempt to contain the problem is analogous to
deploying a group of traffic cops to thwart the attempted takeover of
Nakatome Plaza by Hans Gruber and his sophisticated thugs.
This is not
to absolve BP from responsibility. Contrariwise, it serves to point out that the
incompetent recalcitrance of BP in managing this crisis is rivaled only by the
arrogant incompetence of the Obama regime. But President Obama being famous for
voting "present” as a Senator, seems to have insisted to uphold his
tradition. The White House Spinmeisters have been insisting that the federal
there since "day one.” Being there, a phrase popularized by the
Peter Sellers movie, has been adopted by this administration as a regime
situations fraught with gravitas, the governing class tends to gravitate towards
complicated scenarios, rather than endeavor for a straight forward approach.
Thus, to ensure a long-term solution to the crisis the White House has created a
presidential commission to investigate the oil spill and deployed
US Attorney General Holder and his brigade of lawyers to determine who is
legally liable and who to sue eventually.
It is vintage
Obama academic deployment and not co-incidental that the best known synonym for
academic is "irrelevant.” But the country can finally sleep well and not worry
about the spill. Hollywood has been deployed in no less a venerable personage of
James Cameron of Titanic and Avatar fame.
Exercise in Irrelevance
attempts at comparing the human and economic tolls of the BP mishap to that
of Hurricane Katrina. There are vital differences between
Katrina and the BP gush that bear stressing:
potential energy of a hurricane is inherently erratic and unpredictable that of
an oil reservoir inherently derivable from essentially knowable if not known
location of the breach in Katrina was under local jurisdiction, from whom the
federal authorities had to ask permission to intervene. The site of the oil gush
is Federal territorial waters under control by Federal authorities. To deploy
sorely needed countermeasures local authorities have to ask permission and under
the mercy of every whim of the federal bureaucrats starting with the President
3) There are
no known mechanisms or mature technologies to control the kinetic energy
unleashed by a hurricane. There are enough
mature technologies available to control the physical kinetic energy coming
from an oil reservoir.
4) The Obama
regime is vent on downsizing the U.S. economy starting with the energy sector.
The Bush administration was never so inclined and so hostile to the energy
sector. It would therefore be just another section of the Saul Alinsky playbook
to ensure that the mishap bludgeons BP and other "big oil” entities into
surrender. It fits right into the Rahm
Emanuel mantra to
"...never want a serious crisis to go to waste."
kindred factors make any
attempts at a comparison between the ravages of Katrina and the disaster
resulting from the oil spill an exercise in bogus journalism, intent at
obfuscating if not outright excusing the incompetence in crisis management so
far exhibited by the Obama regime.
Priceless Lessons from the Spill
important lesson from the BP oil mess ought to be obvious: no amount of mopping
up averts disaster unless the source is successfully plugged. It needs to be
repeated explicitly and clearly because it is a reality we seem to keep
disregarding, habitually especially as it pertains to the influx of undocumented
travelers through the southern border.
Like the BP
sludge that has despoiled pristine territorial waters in the Gulf of Mexico,
destroying the livelihood of millions in the process, the influx of illegal
aliens in the southern border is undermining the very concept of our national
sovereignty. The wall has to be mended before any meaningful talk of any kind of
immigration reform, comprehensive or otherwise, makes any sense. In answer
to Robert Frost’s question, mending the wall would be walling out intruders who
do not respect our laws simultaneously as it would be walling in our self
perception as a nation of laws.
Suppose, by a
miracle of miracles, the country finally develops the political will to enforce
the law and the spine to round up all those undocumented individuals and
transport them to the Mexican border. What happens then if the Mexican
authorities simply disown them? In the absence of evidence that they belong to
any other country, the U.S. would be stuck with the bodies of living human
It would be a
de facto reverse
writ of habeas corpus, i.e., "you have the bodies, they are your problems.”
Shall we have the moral courage and justification to just unload the people at
the border? I hazard to guess that we do not. We have a long tradition of being
a compassionate people. We shall have ended licking at the flat end of the
It would be
another national nightmare for which we need another messiah to deliver us from.
It would most definitely be much worse than a few thousand barrels of oil
polluting our pristine waters and shores. It would be polluting our collective