You read the title of this post right. BP agrees to hand over $20 billion and let the government decide how to spend it. No validating of claims by BP, no oversight by BP, and no promise of a cap at $20 billion for BP. It's true, I've never run an oil company, but I am struggling mightily to see why BP would agree to this, unless they feel they actually needed this dramatic of a PR move.
What do they think is going to happen when this $20 billion gets tinkled away (and it will). What are they going to do the NEXT time Obama holds his hand for for $20 billion, or $30 billion, or $50 billion? This is appeasement and it never works.