copyright 2010 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
For more than a century, in unison, the planets' population proclaimed, thankfully petroleum flows. Oil powers our machines. The refined product has helped us manufacture massive quantities of clothing, aluminum sheet, and photovoltaic (PV) solar cells. "Plastics." As was professed in a popular film decades ago, "There's a great future in plastics." Presently, and in the past, BP understood this and much more. The company's Executives knew petroleum could and would provide endless profits, power, and a perpetual presence.
Talk began in April, on the 20th to be exact. On that fateful day people began to recognize a shift in the wind, or more correctly in the seas. Waterways in the Gulf of Mexico filled with fuel. The flow seemed endless. Months later, the stream of crude has barely subsided. Many mused as the corporate slogan states, BP is "Beyond Petroleum."
Today, millions, perchance billions, believe this company has operated beyond the reach of what were presumed to be regulations. Documents reveal that on countless occasions the oil giant violated government set standards . With "willful neglect of safety rules, and penalties for manipulating energy markets" British Petroleum moved forward with an unmistakable mission, profits at any price. Human and environmental tragedies were thought the cost of doing business. "Accidents" happen. People perish. Either or each is as milk spilled. A company, as conventional wisdom taught British Petroleum, cannot cry over spilled milk, coffee, or oil.
BP never has. Throughout their more than century long existence cruelty has characterized the corporations policies and practices. BP is not only Beyond Petroleum. This business is Beyond Belief.
Try as we might to justify our shared gluttony, it is difficult to imagine that anyone could truly deny the human thirst for fossil fuels has led us down the path of destruction. We wanted Texas Tea, and what we now have is Gulf Coast Coffee.
People may wish to call what occurred a spill, and from what is read and heard in the Press, we do. Yet, no object dropped. No cup of oil can be turned upright. Indeed, the only splash or spatter seen was blood. We can safely say that life sustaining red fluid from human bodies was spilled. However, the oil that rushes from the ocean's ground is another sort of bleed. The gusher from below is a hemorrhage. It is an uncontrollable surge of fluid. The oil that now fills the sea and covers the shores is the result of a puncture wound. Pierce an artery and the effect is the same.
Humans have purposely, physically hurt their Mother Earth and ultimately, themselves. We have done anything and everything to feed our addiction. People in the "civilized" world might be compared with any individual who desperately craves food, drink, or drugs. We will do what we must to satisfy our desires, regardless of the fact that our folly will injure another.
Thus, we drill hole after hole into our planet's body. Not long ago, actually days before the Deepwater Horizon rig was ablaze, citizens in this country chanted, in chorus with the Obama Administration, "Drill Baby Drill."
Even two months after the catastrophe, as a nation we advanced the theme, and happily arranged to act on "Drill Baby Drill." The difference is, today, we express a bit of concern for what might be, but only a bit.
Conveniently, as addicts do, we rationalize. Several say we have begun to wean ourselves. Besides, in the past, we controlled the Earth's hemorrhages, . . .or pretended to. Now we opportunely take no blame and call what has occurred a spill.
For so long we, just as British Petroleum, immersed ourselves in the "bliss" of ignorance. The "spilled milk" adage has been our aide. Thus, at present, we proudly search for solutions. BP too has embraced this tradition, although the company's attempts to answer the call might be considered clumsy , comical., and call into question the term "sweet crude."
Absolutely. Something must be done. We must find a way to stop the bleed. Bandages have proven to be inadequate. It has been confirmed; crafts and chemicals are calculated risks. Numerous persons recall their childhood. Mom's tried and true traditional healing techniques were often the better cure to what ailed them. Yes. Scientists, Doctor Riki Ott among them, avow, there are natural common sense ways to clean and contain the flow that gushes from the Gulf floor. However, as is often observed, BP has adopted not one of these. In truth, the company dismissed all but four of the more than 35,000 ideas it received in the month of May. These scant treasures were only "tested."