In its latest attempt to repair its decaying public image, BP (NYSE: BP) has been taking out full-page ads in major print publications this week.

It's a noble strategy. Even if it's not the only party to blame for the bubbling crude in the Gulf of Mexico, BP has become the public face of this environmental catastrophe.

"We will get it done," the ad begins. "We will make this right."

However, several paragraphs down rests a promise that BP is unlikely to keep.

"Our efforts will not come at any cost to taxpayers," it reads.


I get it. BP is going to foot the growing cleanup tab, as it wrestles behind the scenes with Transocean (NYSE: RIG) and Halliburton (NYSE: HAL) for ultimate culpability.

However, this is like committing a messy murder and agreeing to wipe up the blood. There's still a dead body here. There are costly implications beyond squeegee and mop-up duty.

I live in Florida and am already contributing to the state's pain. I was set to join several family members on a beach vacation in Sarasota later this month. We've called it off, given the oily water. Last I checked, all of the coastal resort towns that are going to be smacked down are taxpaying entities. If they forgo bookings, their respective jurisdictions will be lighter on tax receipts. Taxpayers are ultimately expected to cover the shortfalls, so what's BP going to do there?

The victims -- beyond the marine life and the 11 crewmen who died in the original explosion -- started out as a small cluster of local fishermen, but now entire states will be feeling the pinch. Some modeling now suggests that the oil may wrap around Florida and work its way up the Eastern seaboard.

What's up with that BP? Will you be covering any shortfalls at Disney (NYSE: DIS) this summer? Disney World rests smack-dab in the middle of the state, but that doesn't mean the family entertainment giant will be immune to plummeting tourism on the coasts. It operates a popular timeshare resort in Vero Beach. It sends out cruise ships.

Speaking of cruising, how quiet do you think the call centers are at NCL, Carnival (NYSE: CCL), and Royal Caribbean (NYSE: RCL) these days? It's unlikely that the oil spill will reach many of their exotic ports of call in the Caribbean, but as long as there is a cloud of uncertainty, why would landlubbers plunk down hard-earned deposits on floating casinos? Oh, and even though many cruise operators sail under foreign flags -- with the tax-skirting benefits to show for it -- the implications are quite real for the businesses in the Floridian port towns that rely on a steady flow of passengers.

Our efforts will not come at any cost to taxpayers.

Oh, it's your efforts -- and not your actions -- that won't burden the taxpayers. Nice save, BP. You missed a spot of splatter.

You will get this done, but something tells me that you won't make this right.

Will BP be financially culpable for lost business and bankruptcies caused by the oil leak? Share your thoughts in the comments box below.

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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz isn't the activist type, but he's one irate Floridian. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story, except for Disney. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.