Sunday, August 22, 2010

American Despair Continued...a series unfortunatley

The last week was truly an exercise in showing the lemming like march to the sea that characterizes life in America these days.A prime example was the so-called "End of the Iraq War" which must have come as rude shock to the latest (and probably not the last) American killed there.Particularly galling was coverage by MSNBC which supposedly represents liberal or progressive opinion with breathless pieces with Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow sounding like embedded journalists trying to overlook the fact that a withdrawal that still leaves 50,000+ forces is incongruous to put it mildly. Of course if your network is owned by one of the largest defense contractors in the country the idea of being an independent voice is difficult at times.

The next example is the Gulf Oil Spill is all cleaned up now. Here we have a problem where an out of control trans-national has ruined an enormous area for decades but now that there is no visible problem at least compared to the last 4 months everything is fine. Except pesky scientists keep intruding with inconvenient facts:

"As you might have heard, scientists are finding gigantic under oil plumes from the BP spill, including one that is more than 22 miles long, more than a mile wide and 650 feet deep.

On Thursday, Dr. Ian MacDonald and and Dr. Lisa Suatoni testified to a Congressional subcommittee that the oil will stay toxic, and will not degrade much further, for decades. MacDonald is an expert in deep-ocean extreme communities including natural hydrocarbon seeps, gas hydrates, and mud volcano systems, a former long-time NOAA scientist, and a professor of Biological Oceanography at Florida State University. Suatoni has a PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Yale, and is Senior Scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council's Oceans Program.

Dr. MacDonald told Congress that the oil has already degraded, emulsified and evaporated about as much as its going to, and it is going to very resistant for further biodegradation. The oil will be in the environment for a long-time, he said, and the imprint of the BP discharge will be detectable "for the rest of my life" (he's 58, and the average lifespan for American men is about 76; so that's some 18 years).

Dr. Suatoni told Congress that oil which goes into low-oxygen zones will remain in a full toxic form for decades."

These stories epitomize the collapse of American institutions that in a normal society galvanize the attention of the public and those in power as well. However if your media has been corporatized beyond recognition, your government also corporatized and unable to respond to the needs of the greater populace, and your populace preoccupied with personal economic survival, this is what you get.

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