No Accident: BP, Murder and the Gulf of Mexico

The murder of the Gulf of Mexico by BP shouldn’t surprise us. It is precisely what industrial capitalism does. Years ago I wrote of the catastrophe in Bhopal: when you intentionally fabricate bulk industrial chemicals, many of which are toxic, it should not qualify as an accident when some of these chemicals kill people. Likewise, the spill in the Gulf should not be considered an accident. There are 10,000 oil spills per year. Oil has devastated the Amazon. It has devastated the Niger Delta. It has devastated the Gulf of Mexico.

Likewise, after the catastrophe at Bhopal, it was discovered that there was no antidote for the poison. One advocate for the victims noted sensibly: “No one should be allowed to make poisons for which there is no antidote.” The same is true for the other destructive activities of this culture.

And corporations will not voluntarily rein themselves in. Limited liability corporations exist in order to limit liability. Their function is to privatize profits and to externalize costs.

And governments will not voluntarily rein in corporations. A primary function of governments is to provide subsidies and to provide muscle for that privatization of profits and that externalization of costs.

Corporations and governments are murdering the planet. They will not stop on their own. It is incumbent upon us to stop them, to force accountability onto those sociopaths who are killing the planet. And failure is not an option. We must stop them.

Originally published at Press Action

Filed in Essays
No Responses — Written on June 14th — Filed in Essays

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