The difference a month makes

It’s been one month since BP’s Deepwater Horizon sank.  The levels of human incompetence and political corruption that have been revealed are breathtaking. Most prominently, the role of the federal Minerals’ Management Service as pimp for the oil industry has been stripped bare for all to see.

Of course the full impact of this disaster is unclear, largely because BP will not allow scientists to calculate how much oil is being released each day and because the government will not force them to reveal this information.  This is another aspect of this tragedy that has illuminated the dark, dark corners of our polity: the U.S. government is utterly dependent on a corporation it is supposed to be regulating to fix this life and land threatening disaster.

With our consequent lack of knowledge about actually how much the ocean is being polluted in mind, it’s worth looking at the live video feed of the oil gushing out of the damaging equipment 5,000 feet below the surface of the sea.  It’s quite literally an infernal image.  Check it out here.


Filed under environment, Uncategorized

2 responses to “The difference a month makes

  1. I’m sure you’re well aware of the remarks made by Paul Rand regarding the BP oil spill crisis. He charges Obama and his administration as being “un-American in [their] criticism of business.” He contends that too much blame is being placed on corporations. His grave digging on ABC’s “Good Morning America” has run its course. Various print and internet publications have exposed his shortsightedness. He was even satirized on Bill Maher’s “Politically Incorrect.” And although the messenger is a bit repugnant (his recent criticism of civil rights laws) and his delivery maladroit, we need to recognize that we are responsible for this spill as much as BP and our government. We are complicit in our refusals to wean off of oil, and invest in research and development of greener resources. Perhaps Rand is not as ignorant as we think.

    • I’m afraid I don’t think there’s anything redeeming about Rand Paul – his pro-business arguments are precisely the same ones used by Southern racists during the Jim Crow era to defend their odious policies.

      I agree that we all have responsibility to change our behavior in order to save the planet, but change has got to be institutional above all. After all, if I choose not to drive a car for environmental reasons, that just makes more room on the highway for some jerk in an SUV – unless the government makes it too expensive for people in general to choose unsustainable behavior like Hummer binge purchases.

      We need populist ire to be directed at the government for NOT doing enough to stop big business destroying the planet – as it so evidently has in the Gulf of Mexico – rather than, as Rand Paul would have it, at the government for attempting to mop up after a disastrous lack of regulation leads to environmental armageddon.

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