How to Negotiate, 101
BP is seeking permission to keep drilling at 10 existing deepwater wells in the gulf in exchange for adhering to stricter safety rules.
For future reference, this is how you start a negotiation: if you give me what I want, I will do what I am already committed to do.
The fact that BP can approach the American government with such a proposal tells us much about where real power lies, or at least the perception of power. I hope that Barack Obama or one of his people punches a BP executive in the jaw as a counterproposal.