Dear America: Oil Leaks & Misplaced anger

Dear America,

People are up in arms about the BP oil spill…sort of. Mostly, they seem to be mad at the President, as if he’s supposed to strap on a snorkel and personally fix the leak. Well, I don’t know if you’ve noticed,  but the use of oil and other fossil fuels has been pretty much destroying the earth for decades, and no one –including, probably, you–seems to care. Apparently, neither do many of the residents of America’s gulf region. Most residents favor continued off shore oil drilling, if you can believe that, because they need the jobs. Apparently they’re more concerned with the jobs than respiratory diseases and cancer…because what’s your health worth if you can’t enjoy it by having money to buy crap with?

If there was a service that employed hundreds of people in your town who went around cutting off people’s arms with a chainsaw, would you defend them by saying the community needs the tax dollars? If you lived in the gulf region, maybe you would…

Maybe, America, I’ve got you all wrong. Perhaps, you are sick of the destruction oil has caused. What can you do? You could, boycott BP. But then who do you get your gasoline from? As Newsweek pointed out the other oil companies are not exactly fine, upstanding corporate citizens. Really, your anger, America, is misplaced.

Point the finger at yourself! it’s you whose insatiable need for big cars, and central air-conditioning that keep companies drilling, rigs exploding, and–for that matter–coal mines collapsing. Think I’m over-reacting, well listen this: According to recent estimates somewhere between 35-60,000 barrels of oil are leaking out per day, but that’s about what our collective cars use in four minutes. FOUR MINUTES, AMERICA!

So, if you are actually mad about the havoc that oil is wreaking on our environment here’s a suggestion: Get off the oil teet!

There is a company in Massachusetts that wants to put a wind farm in between the mainland and Martha’s Vineyard, where there’s a ton of wind. Guess who doesn’t want it? The rich residents of MV who think it will disturb their view (as if their monster houses didn’t already ugly up the island). If you’ve ever been to New Mexico, Arizona, or southern California, you might notice that it’s pretty sunny there (although it tends to be dim in the AZ state legislature recently). Why aren’t those areas totally running on solar power? Let’s say you live in New Jersey (my condolences). There’s not enough wind. It’s not sunny enough to go completely solar. Besides a bad reputation, what else is there in NJ? How about the ocean? Harness the tide to generate power. Think of it like a wind mill under water. The tide is never ending and clean. If a turbine breaks, no endless oil spilling out…you just pluck it out of the water.

So, there you have it: my energy plan. Ocean states use the ocean. Sunbelt states use the sun. Mid-west states use wind. Upper Midwest…well, I haven’t figured that one out yet but maybe cold, snow, and steady habits can produce energy. Any way you look at it, there is no reason we should still be using things like coal. What is this, 1910?

If President Obama wants to leave a legacy, like Kennedy and the space program, this could be his chance. Let’s see if he can get the will of the people and Congress behind him–though, the post-speech reaction does not bode well. If not, I guess we’ll all get to find out what a lung transplant feels like.

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One comment

  1. Cold and snow don’t make energy though. I still like our President. The Hartford Courant “BP itself has acknowledged that responsibility for the economic damages lies with them and has offered an initial pledge of $20 billion dollars for that purpose.” I like theyre keeping the focus on the corporations failures. I like tough lovin in this article, but u betta be American if u gonna dis Americans, or I’ll suspect you’re biased for the wrong reasons. ❤ Dan

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