Well, up to a point. Too Big To Fail is a phrase we often hear these days and one that by now you may well be bored by. We don't hear much about its companion: Big Enough To Fail.
But that would seem to be the case with BP and the Gulf of Mexico. Even amongst oil companies there aren't many - Exxon, Chevron, Shell and a handful of others - who'd have the resources or revenues to cope with a disaster of this magnitude. BP is one of the select few. And even then it may be a damned close run thing.
That doesn't mean all is fine and dandy with BP or excuse its appallingly ham-fisted press operation but it's a reminder, perhaps, that this situation, catastrophic as it may be, could be much worse. Especially for the American taxpayer - and for an administration that might, in other circumstances, have been forced to "own" the spill much earlier and much more completely than has been the case with BP.