Full circle. Those who remember or have studied the early days of the environmental movement will recall that the burning of the Cuyahoga River due to oil waste floating on its surface was one of the major public events spurring the Congress to pass and President Nixon to sign the Clean Water Act of 1970, the first major American environmental law. Now, 40 years and a series of dispiriting reversals later, the geniuses in charge of protecting perhaps America's most valuable fishery and coastal/wetland recharge zone from utter destruction by wasted oil are thinking of intentionally SETTING THE GULF OF MEXICO ON FIRE!
AS A POLLUTION CONTROL TECHNIQUE!
We have gone from burning waterways as the ultimate symbol of our environmental recklessness to burning seas to save our waterways from our rapacious appetite for cheap energy and profit and ever more heedless disregard for the consequences of satiating our greed.
Any society that cannot receive messages screaming as loudly as ours about our chosen source of energy and methods of obtaining it deserves whatever horrible fate it drives itself headlong into.
Three times in a little over one year, just in the United States of America, and twice in a month, we have seen massive human and environmental disasters from our insistence on maintaining our hypnotic lock on an absurdly primitive way of obtaining energy: burning poisonous black gunk. Either to make late 19th-century style pistons go up and down or boil water in early 19th-century style steam engines to spin magnets in circles. Here's the thing about burning poisonous black gunk; the by-product is oxidized poisonous black gunk that either blows all over the place as smoke to foul all manner of lungs, pores, waters and soils or is captured in filters or ponds or slurry piles and just sits until, until . . . .