“Full spectrum dominance” 14 July 2010Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, 2012 Re Election, DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Lie Down Fall Down Dems, The Battle for New Orleans.
Image: The White House via Flickr
President Barack Obama reworks his address to the nation regarding the BP oil spill with, from left, Carol Browner, assistant to the President for energy and climate change, Senior Advisor David Axelrod, and Director of Speechwriting Jon Favreau, in the Outer Oval Office, June 15, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Moving right along… this is the boileroom… oh, I am sure I mean Brain Trust, that worked on the June Oval Office speech. The speech that said it, that problem down South, would be a “trickle” in a “few days”.
Faith, Hope and Charity. They extended all of that to BP.
[T]he very Democratic president whom that right-wing loathed responded by opening much of the offshore U.S. to oil exploitation while promising lavish public subsidies to jumpstart a renaissance of nuclear energy.
Bold new technology, he assured his countrymen, had made both energy sources safe as banks. Safe as the risk-taking investment banks that had just gone down, perhaps.
The petroleum industry had, for decades, made wastelands of the Niger River Delta, the Caspian Sea, the Persian Gulf, the Ecuadorian jungles, and more, but as long as the oil kept flowing, few in the developed world cared. And then they had to.
Turning to Prayer
President Barack Obama gave his first Oval Office address, invoking the spirit and know-how with which Americans had won World War II and landed men on the moon, then wound up asking for prayer. Americans prayed, but the oil kept coming in with the dying pelicans and porpoises.
President Obama had, after all, staffed his administration with bright but blinkered technocrats who, as critic Chris Hedges remarked, “mistake the art of manipulation with knowledge.”
Obama’s Nobel Prize-winning Energy Secretary — who had earlier brokered a lucrative marriage of BP and the University of California to develop genetically altered biofuels without mentioning the dangers entailed — announced a “dream team” of the nation’s best and brightest scientists and engineers to devise a solution to the gusher, and then Secretary Steven Chu went mute.
If BP and the government could not contain the blowout they could try to control the flow of information about it.
Ever more umbilically dependent upon machines and the fossil fuel-derived energy that drives them, they live with a young technocrat in the White House who promised change but who — bereft of any vision of how the earth’s resources could be more equitably distributed and its technology more wisely used — delivered instead the status quo.
As the lethal cloud spreads unchecked in the sea, few yet understand that a dead ocean means dead land.
… As the worsening news from the Gulf becomes chronic, it retreats into the inner pages of dying newspapers, displaced from the front page by the World Cup and Tiger Woods’s comeback.
That much of life could be ending on Planet Earth would be a bummer for many, and very bad for business. The lights must never go out, wrote Auden at the outbreak of World War II, the music must always play.
Tho I’d say Tiger is not having much of a come back. Other than that….
Oh yes, that “full spectrum dominance…” idea:
[B]ut the money had not run out for the military whose budgets engorged on the conviction that the U.S. could, should, and, indeed, must police the planet like a frontier sheriff patrolling an unruly mining camp.
Reagan’s successors and disciples called that military fantasy “full spectrum dominance.” At the start of the Twenty-first Century, Congress unstintingly funded foreign wars while further slashing taxes and starving domestic programs.
The emaciated “beast” of public services at the core of democratic governance not so much slouched as staggered and gasped toward its terminus, its mangy hide stretched taut over brittle ribs.
Freed of constraining regulation and barriers, the world economy morphed into a hybrid pawn shop and casino, its winners luring suckers into the pool with promises of ever-increasing prosperity. Few alive remembered the year 1929 and what followed. Then, in 2008, the house came down. …
“Hyrid pawn shop and casino”. Yes, that’s us. And “winners luring suckers ino the pool”, that’s us too… “Frontier sheriff patrolling…”, that too…
With a “God Bless America” band-aid for all.