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From Whowhat why.com, how the oil lobby and the politicians are working to increase public tolerance for high-risk drilling by channeling money from drilling on federal lands to flood control work -- which generates jobs for the people hit hardest by the BP oil spill and makes them more amenable to new high-risk drilling. Go read it.
But here's the part that really struck me:
Of course, contrary to what the Los Angeles Times asserts, the real reason the lawmakers support the move is NOT their concern to reduce dependence on foreign oil. It is to increase our tolerance for risky domestic drilling.
If you doubt there’s more to it, consider who feathers Sen. Mary Landrieu’s nest. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, the vast majority of her campaign contributions from 2007-2012 ($2.5 million) came from law firms, lobbyists, and the oil and gas industry. Guess who is one of the biggest clients of law firms and lobbyists? The oil and gas industry. It’s a safe bet that without doing that industry’s bidding, Mary Landrieu is toast. So she has to promote measures like this that do harm to the public interest and produce more profits for the dominant industry in her area.
It’s not that Mary Landrieu is a good or a bad person, any more than any of her Gulf Coast colleagues, of both parties, who also support this move. It’s that the system is so dirty. And that the public doesn’t have a media that can afford to just tell it to us straight—in such a way as to make us care, and make us want to actually do something about it.
Bet that, without public understanding of what is at stake, the very people who have a reason to fight against more offshore drilling in the gulf will be out there arguing for it.
And that's the entire system, in a nutshell. Makes me shudder.