Part of appropriate action is the gathering of data. Another part is timing.
Not to take away from the urgency which my Republican friends are urging on us here, but some of the actions urged, such as the use of a nuclear bomb or conventional explosives from some of the more frantic sounding voices on the Right and, for all I know, possibly on the left as well, though I haven't heard of any specifics on that, are plainly a bit out of touch. For references and entertaining sound clips, Ms. Maddow in her Monday show ran some wonderful ones. That would be Monday, June 21, 2010, for those of you who are interested.
Explosives, especially nuclear explosives are a very bad idea, for those of you who aren't up on the matter, because of the unstable nature of the sedimentary rock on the ocean floor at that point, which in Geological terms is, I'm told, only about 35,000,000 years old and not much more tenacious than highly compressed sand or sandstone. For those who are even more up on this than I am, I'm sorry to be inflicting excess information on you. It's new to me.
Apparently, also according to Maddow, new documents came out from BP today saying that the worst case disaster estimates figures by BP were not the 1000 barrels per day originally bruited about, but were in fact one hundred thousand barrels per day.
It seems to me that the notion of unleashing industry without regulation seems less and less responsible as we find out more and more. Disposal of chemical and industrial waste is also a very large issue. The industry, which one would like to imagine would self-regulate in the spirit of "enlightened self-interest" does not in actuality do so. The balancing factors that would have helped that happen, a strong government regulatory system and a tenacious system of unions looking out for those who actually do the work, have been under attack by the better funded business folk for over a hundred years, since the Sherman anti-trust act, and many of the gains that the country has made since that landmark legislation seem to have been rolled back, including the system of protective tariffs.
There is an old saying among psychoanalysts that addresses what is frequently the more important reaction to crisis, or one of the most important elements, at least.
"Don't just do something, sit there!"
Most important is the rejection of the invitation to panic which is so frequently issued. Leadership is not about panic. My friends on the right might remember their advice in the face of the President's push to pass healthcare last August, and their insistence on this very point. While it can be over-extended, and it has been from time to time, effective action will frequently benefit from at least a bit of consideration. As you said.