one of the ‘rads shared her thoughts with me concerning the collapse of the oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico:

not sure what to say about it yet, other than how fucked up and fuck these oil companies; but at the same time you see how the feds are trying to shift the blame onto the oil companies, as if the feds weren’t the ones who agreed to open up these waters to this very risk (with Obama agreeing in the last couple weeks to open new areas to more offshore drilling).

Looks like the fishing industry and the ports are gonna be dealt a serious blow if/when the oil reaches shore — both of which are vital to the economy of Louisiana. While federal law requires BP to pay for the damages & clean up, what that means in reality is that the insurance policies BP has on that rig will pay out and gas prices are gonna go up (and will probably be pushed up in part by speculators who recognize that the loss of oil production means “decreased” supply and thus increased prices).

i’m a little perplexed about what to think about this.  the anti-civilizational tendency in the ecology movement could easily use this as ammunition to attack “industrial society” as opposed to capitalist society.

there are a few points worth noting, though:

1.  BP has refused to install acoustic triggers, which could have prevented this tragedy because they cost half a million dollars to install on one oil rigg;  this is the subjective decision of capitalist firms, such as BP to sacrifice the world for profits, but it goes beyond individual “greed”

2.  for the moment capitalists have refused to shift towards a sustainable energy economy;  this is tied to the need for profits by the oil industry that operates on an infrastructure worth billions of dollars;  to sacrifice this capital would be catastrophic for the working class because so many of us would lose our jobs.  the transportation infrastructure that almost every company in the world relies upon is also implicated in this transition;  under capitalism, if a company is not profitable than the workers will be the first to suffer;  our ability to live is tied to the ability of capital to successfully compete in the market;  the question is:  can the transition to cleaner energy production under capitalism cannot occur without massive devastation for the working class?  i don’t think so.

these two article provide good coverage of the disaster:

from the World Socialist Web Site
Gulf oil spill threatens economic, environmental catastrophe

from the New York Times
BP is Criticized over Oil Spill, but US Missed Chances to Act