On April 20th, the worst oil spill catastrophe in human history began. Today this broken drill bit is still pumping 60,000 barrels of oil a day into the Gulf of Mexico off the coasts of Louisiana and Texas and now, Florida. For years, off-shore drilling in Louisiana was discouraged and for a brief period of sanity, against the law. It was thought that this practice would destroy the wetlands, which it has, removing from south Louisiana any natural or ecological self defense against hurricanes and levee breeches. There is no silt build up or bedrock. This geography is mostly swamp.
The “Drill, baby, drill” crowd eventually seduced President Obama, in the name of creating jobs; even hard, shitty, dangerous jobs. The oil junkies made our President take leave of his better sense.
I don’t know what I expected from the President. I was hoping for bold strokes and the audacity of new ideas, along with the stomach and will to foster these ideas into the world. I knew that no human being could be equal to the onerous framework of hope bestowed on this President. He could not be all things to all people. His first year in office I reminded myself to cut the guy some slack. Still, I remembered the promises he made at Tulane University in 2008; how America would make New Orleans and the Gulf Coast its priority and how rare and special a place the Crescent City is. He said all of the right things to get me drinking the Kool-Aid. His only discussion about the Gulf War was about ending it; putting a halt to an immoral enterprise that has cost so many American and Iraqi lives for something that appears to be more and more every day; the easy flow of cheap gas. It isn’t worth it.
This President knew that two years ago and now he doesn’t.
The oil industry has been rat-fucking the American citizens since its inception. The early days of oil companies are rife with stories of them stealing land via eminent domain laws and slant drilling. The movie, There Will be Blood was tame compared to how this industry actually behaved. What is most vile about BP is their bullshit commercial of the last several years; the “Hey, we’re the GOOD oil company that cares about you and environment,” shuck they’ve been trafficking in for years.
Three years ago they tried to ram a “Lets dump more shit into Lake Michigan” proposal on the city and the surrounding states. These skeevy pukes spend millions on lobbyists to weasel their way around EPA regulations in order that they may continue to fist-fuck the American landscape and foul the world’s oceans. We should be fighting these motherfuckers in the streets.
The oil companies have also done a brilliant job of branding anyone who opposes their continued rape of the planet as “eco-terrorists” and sadly, a great many Americans follow these bastards through the lookingglass where dark is light and light is dark. there are a great many people working in the green tech fieds to try and lessen our suicidal dependence on oil and fossil fuels. There are organizations like Greenpeace, who are often demonized as “eco-thugs” working hard to make sure maybe someday your kid can see a whale, or an eagle, or marvel at the natural beauty of our still fierce and lovely landscape. I watched the show, Whale Wars, with great interest and realized none of these people get paid. Their work is insanely dangerous, yet they do it because this planet and its creatures require some moral stewardship. The BP spill should wake us up. We should demand more of our President in the way of action, and he should give us more. He owes us. We voted in favor of history. It is up to him to make some.
This is my scummiest superhero, The Oil Man.