Guilty Planet has a blog entry about the differences between the Exxon Valdez disaster, and the BP Gulf Of Mexico disaster.
She’s also got another post on how much BP still owes, if you haven’t seen this already.
There’s a comparison between Exxon and BP disasters here too: Oil Spills By The Numbers
We are only just now learning how utterly serious this disaster in the Gulf truly is. Many news reports are being squashed, the American attention span has moved on (long ago I’m afraid) and the real scale and scope of this horror continues to unfold.
Contrast this to this, from the US Government: No Sign of Undersea Plume From Gulf Spill
Recently I wrote about Who You Going To Believe? The distortion of news in this country has gotten so unbelievably bad that you cannot for one moment assume anything from any source.
Even pictures don’t seem to be convincing evidence anymore, or dead whales, carcasses of birds, dolphins, fish, marine life.
Perhaps the “proof” is there — but we’re not. Our attention and interests have been reduced to ten-second sound bytes (I’m being generous here) and then we move on to something less.
There isn’t anything much more important than ensuring we have a habitable planet to live on. We’d get all excited if we were to learn that a massive asteroid was about to strike the Earth, and extinguish all life (an ELE event). We’d demand something be done, wouldn’t we?
But what about the human impact (and indifference) that has struck the Earth? This too in an extinction level event.
But this is business as usual for billions of us. We don’t perceive that this is a problem, or even when these blips happen, that they’re going to be much more then dirty little blips that will wash away, especially when they’re being hidden out of sight by the media, government and the lapping ocean waves.
Stupendously huge impacts have just struck Pakistan, where millions are now facing starvation. You simply cannot distribute food fast enough to avoid this now (where it even exist that is).
Much of the so-called “developed world” barely takes notice. I saw a football stadium filled with fans to the point of overflowing over the weekend (on television). Life goes on, right? Might as well enjoy it, right?
Most of these events occurring are outside of our control — but not our interest, or even our need for self-preservation. We’re allowing our government to run rampant over our environment to the point of collapse, and when big disasters happen, we’re also allowing our government to side with big business. THAT is indeed something we can do something about.
I’ve no illusions that we all feel powerless almost all of the time. That’s meant to be that way, a belief and an attitude that has been carefully cultivated to keep you weak and powerless. We have to renew our commitments first to ourselves to make responsible choices, who and what we support, and who and what we tolerate and allow. That’s the first step.
The second step is to put these commitments into action. There is no reason why these companies and this government keep getting away with these atrocities, except for that fact that we keep letting it happen.