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article imageOp-Ed: Obama's 'clean energy' legacy

By Lynn Herrmann     May 1, 2010 in Politics
Little more than a year ago many in the US had high hopes, buying into Barack Obama’s mantra of hope and change, resulting in a historical election. The sad reality is that was the highlight of American civilization during the last five decades.
Save for a symbolic prize for peace, Obama has accomplished little during his 15 months as US president, other than further the cause of the corporation, a cause that involves spoon feeding most Americans the advantages of coal and oil production. One of the main advantages being, of course, the cleanliness of it all.
The April 5 coal mine disaster in West Virginia was quickly followed by the oil well disaster out in the Gulf of Mexico, an environmental disaster - created by man, naturally - of epic proportions that will eventually become this country’s greatest man-made environmental disaster, on an already famous list of those disasters.
How hard does the blow have to be delivered in order for the so-called leader of the free world to realize his clean coal and off-shore drilling platform he preaches from is no better than his house-of-cards hope and change election platform he preached from?
As the gifted orator’s approval rating continues its downward trend, one would hope that reality will soon set in for the country’s first black president. Clearly, no one could have possibly imagined hope and change might actually set the equal rights movement into reverse mode.
After the Bush debacle, anything was an improvement. A cockroach in the basement corner would have been. Because one can speak well does not necessarily translate into leadership skills, as by now we should all be able to see. Painful that it might be for some to admit.
Still, Barackstar’s relentless pursuit of anything the corporation can control the masses with, namely carbon based energy, shows yet another pathetic attempt at presidential leadership. Let’s just add it to this country’s long list of pathetic attempts at presidential leadership.
In yet another duh moment for the US corporation, Massey Energy Company this week released a statement regarding the current criminal investigation being conducted by the US Justice Department over last month’s coal mine explosion.
"We are aware that investigators are interviewing witnesses, but are not aware of the nature of their investigation." the company statement added: "We intend to cooperate in all phases of the accident investigation."
Perhaps we could compare that one to the liar getting caught telling a lie and then denying the lie.
Not to be outdone by clean coal’s efforts at clean energy, BP begins bracing itself for the world’s largest lawsuit. Just wait and see. Justifiably so. This, of course, for creating one of the world’s greatest environmental disasters.
No stranger to man-made disasters, BP is the oil giant who could very well end up bringing the oil industry to its knees. Wishful thinking, perhaps? What is certain to happen, if the American sheople can ever don actual thinking caps, is a bit of leveling on the playing field for solar and wind energy. Of course, those two components of the clean energy program are clearly available to all, not dependent on corporate control. Therein lies their step-child treatment to a big talker’s clean energy program.
Moving beyond the strangely confusing reports on how many barrels per day (let’s see, is that 1,000 barrels per day or 200,000 gallons per day?) are actually pouring into and then onto the surface of the Gulf of Mexico, ultimately ruining not only the environment but the livelihoods for fishermen throughout the region, we as concerned citizens must begin screaming at our elected officials.
BP’s Transocean Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded on April 20, resulting in 11 missing crew members who are presumed dead and an environmental disaster of unimaginable proportions.
Contrary to corporate reports, the disaster is completely out of control, with the company now seeking assistance from the US military (yes, our tax dollars), and anyone else willing to lend a helping hand or a brain the size of a pea in order to help solve the nightmare.
Haliburton, yes that of Dick Cheney fame, continues to be connected to the disaster, and has instituted its own CYA program. As reported in the Huffington Post, Haliburton has issued a press release stating it has “performed a variety of services” on the doomed oil rig. Imagine that.
Although the Wall Street Journal calls BP’s efforts a “rapid response to the oil spill threat” there comes a time when the act of blowing smoke up certain orifices must be called what it actually is.
Speaking to them with a civilized tone has ultimately led us to these two rapid-fire disasters. And has begun shining the spotlight in a glaring manner on a do-nothing president’s accomplishments.
Eerily similar to Bush’s response to Hurricane Katrina, this week the Barackstar sent his own director of Homeland Security to assess the damage of this country’s greatest environmental disaster, showing his true colors regarding environmental issues.
As Obama continues pontificating to the crowds about the advantages of his clean energy program, miners continue to give lives, as well as their health, and the wild creatures of the gulf will have their life system forever altered.
At some point, we must begin demanding more than lip service to a viable clean energy program.
At some other point the people must begin asking what price are we expected to pay for the advantages of Obams’s well-oiled clean energy program? Or for man-made disasters. Imagine, windburn or sunburn as major threats to that clean energy program.
As with all weaning processes, there will be pain. It is time for America to lead the way toward a greener future, taking control and power from the corporation, placing it on our shoulders. Then we begin developing wind and solar, granting those two viable energy sources the government subsidies equal to or greater than what coal, oil and nuclear receive.
Whether it be writing on-line op-ed pieces or chaining ourselves to trees, as stewards of the earth we all must shoulder some responsibility.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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