BP – Bringing People together

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by Andy Cobb and The Partisans

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Obama & BP: Killing you & Killing Me

by Davis Fleetwood

Allison Kilkenny, in her excellent article on True/ Slant yesterday, digs a little deeper into the question many a liberal are asking. Namely: What is Obama supposed to do about BP’s Disaster?

At the time of this writing, BP’s latest experimental bid to plug its seabed oil gusher in the Gulf of Mexico (affectionately code named “top kill”) – still hung in the balance. Top executives are still trying to determine how a process that works well on land will or will not work under the extreme pressure of 5,000 feet under the sea.

Officials are scrambling (when do we get to stop calling them “officials and start calling them criminals?), some 37 days into the slow motion destruction of an entire region, because there are no government regulations that required them to have a plan to deal with this eventuality.

Which brings us back to the question: What the hell is Obama supposed to do about it? The truth is, we need oil. Even if we took every Randian Regressive SUV loving American and secretly slipped them fair trade organic coffee and sprinkled some Ed Begley Jr. pixie dust that magically turned everyone in the United States into members of the green party and we elected people like Rev. Billy to office, there is still going to be a significant transition period as we wean ourselves from our suicidal and homicidal addiction to oil.

As a nation, we use nearly 1 out every 4 barrels of oil brought to the world market, yet we only produce 3% of the worlds oil. So, it is hard to criticize Obama for approving additional offshore permits on the one hand while waging his impressive rhetorical finger at BP with the other.

Or is it?

For liberals who have not gotten the memo that it is time to remove the Obama goggle, perhaps. Imagine, my fellow friends on the left, if the same facts were unfolding, with a similar White House response, and John McCain and V.P “Drill Baby Drill” were in the White House.

Again, one has to read below the fold as it were, to dig a little deeper, and we can thank Kilkenny, whose article points the way with an easy to understand little chart illustrating US oil consumption and how little new offshore drilling actually contributes.

So why has the administration has issued seven new permits, and five waivers allowing companies to bypass environmental concerns since the BP oil leak began?

Is it possible that the administration thinks that the rewards we get from the addition of, quite literally, a drop in the bucket, will help outweigh the risks?

And what, exactly are the risks of wind farming? An Air Spill? Or Solar Energy? Sure, at best, solar energy is only a temporary band-aid. Recent calculations indicate that the Sun Will Go Out in a Billion Years.

Or is it more likely that the government, as Kilkenny suggests have “placed the sovereignty of a corporation ahead of the health of the American people?”

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A freelance writer, Davis Fleetwood has worked as a writer/ media consultant for Dennis Kucinich’s 2008 presidential campaign and served as a contributing editorial commentator for The Uptake. His videos have been seen by over 14 million viewers. He has been called (among many other things) “one of the most prominent voices in YouTube politics.” (-You Tube News & Politics chief, Steve Grove) He was a “Best of YouTube, 2007” nomination. His book I Stay In So You Can Go Out, is due out in May from No Cure For That Press, and his first full length feature documentary, MANIFEST DESTINY’S CHILD, is due out on DVD this June.

THE HERMIT WITH DAVIS FLEETWOOD is a sometimes serious, sometimes satiric look at the top headlines, current events, and political trends. The show is Independently produced by a staff of one & runs on the fuel of your individual donations.

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Jamie Farr to Replace Simon Cowell on American Idol

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originally posted at THE UMPTEENTH TIMES

HOLLYWOOD—According to sources close to the show, actor and longtime game show guest, Jamie Farr, will be replacing Simon Cowell for the next season of American Idol.

“The producers don’t feel as if Ellen is pulling her weight as a comedian,” said an unidentified employee at Fox. “In fact, they think she stinks. Bringing in a great comic force like Jamie Farr will no doubt keep the show fresh, especially for its younger viewers.”

Recently, Cowell announced he will not be returning to American Idol, leaving a spot open for another devilish commentator to take his place.

“Originally, that was the plan. There was talk of Charles Manson, Osama Bin Laden or Dick Cheney, who all would’ve been great for the show. Ultimately, the producers figured that’d be too predictable. They feel Farr, being the big star that he is, will carry the show for at least another five years.”

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What do BP Oil, Andy Dick and LOST have in common?

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by Davis Fleetwood

Allowing BP to handle the Oil Leak disaster makes about as much sense as awarding the building contract to rebuild the Twin Towers to Al Qaeda.

So, we just over a month now into the largest environmental disaster in history, and the criminally negligent corporate structure that earned BP $7.7 Billion in first quarter profits in part because laws on the books that limit their liability for environmental disasters such as this to a paltry $75 Million is still in charge of their own crime scene.

Why?

Because the White House knows that this is a no win situation, kind of like being Andy Dick’s AA sponsor, and if they roll their sleeves up and take charge the news cycle during the 2010 midterm election will be populated with variations of the headline OBAMA’S KATRINA.

So, we are now over a month into the largest environmental disaster in history and we have no idea how to plug the leak. It will continue to gush through August (plus or minus 12 months) and never was there a meeting; not in Obama’s White House, and all of the agencies staffed with Nobel laureates in the worlds most powerful country; not in a BP corporate culture that knew, from their own interior sources, that a catastrophe like this was not an if, but a when; never did any of the kings horses nor any of the kinds men sit down and have a brainstorm session the end result of which produced anything like a contingency plan for this eventuality. And what do we, the American public do?

Listen: Shrugging your shoulders and rolling over to go to sleep, while an understandable response if you had the exhausting task of serving as Andy Dicks AA sponsor, when you get that phone call- again- that Andy is passed out in a hotel room under a pile of empty Meister Brau cans and a gaggle of barely legal employees of rent boy dot com, is not an acceptable response coming from a nation addicted to the that oil that is quite literally killing us when confronted with such a powerful reminder of the destructiveness of said addiction.
So, we are now just over a month into the largest environmental disaster in history as it unfolds in slow motion before our eyes; the geyser spewing anywhere between 5 and 110 millions gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico (depending on what estimates you believe) and we, as only Americans can, care less and less and less as time drips on like a an ancient form of Chinese torture, just another chapter in our Christian Nation’s favorite book: The End of Fucken Days. Because in America if you don’t believe somewhere in your heart of hearts that the Jesus is going to come down on a white horse and whisk you away to a “better place” you can count yourself in a minority, and if you are not a Jesus freak odds are you’ve got a Mayan calendar hanging on your bathroom wall in your trailer home somewhere so who cares about the effects of BP chemical dispersants on sub sea level ecosystems and the long term environmental impacts that might have, or a whole generation of people who make their living in the fishing industry from the area that accounts for 20% of the nations commercial seafood production Cuz the planet earth, like those unsuspecting crash test dummies in those old school Volvo commercials, is on a crash course with the immovable force called the END, so why bother getting in a tizzy about BP when we have our own private Andy Dick-weeds to tend and the metaphysical implications of the series finale of LOST to talk about?

-Davis Fleetwood 

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A freelance writer, Davis Fleetwood has worked as a writer/ media consultant for Dennis Kucinich’s 2008 presidential campaign and served as a contributing editorial commentator for The Uptake. His videos have been seen by over 14 million viewers. He has been called (among many other things) “one of the most prominent voices in YouTube politics.” (-You Tube News & Politics chief, Steve Grove) He was a “Best of YouTube, 2007” nomination. His book DROPPIN’ KNOWLEDGE LIKE A CLUMSY LIBRARIAN, is currently available from No Cure For That Press, and his first full length feature documentary, MANIFEST DESTINY’S CHILD, is due out on DVD this August.

THE HERMIT WITH DAVIS FLEETWOOD is a sometimes serious, sometimes satiric look at the top headlines, current events, and political trends. The show is Independently produced by a staff of one & runs on the fuel of your individual donations.

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Sarah Palin: ‘We’re All Arizonans Now’

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Calls for an economic boycott of Arizona continue to heat up, and the latest group to boycott the state is a girl’s high school basketball team from Chicago. They are refusing to attend a girls’ basketball tournament in Arizona because of concerns over the new law.


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The Social Network

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An Aaron Sorkin screenplay depicting him as a sex crazed borderline autistic conniver and now a mob of angry Facebook users threaten to quit Facebook over privacy concerns. Poor Mark Zuckerberg.

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Why Elana Kagan?

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by Davis Fleetwood

Pop quiz: Elana Kagan will be the next Supreme Court Justice because
A) Clinton & Obama like and trust her, and most liberals like and trust Clinton & Obama.
B) Republicans will not put up a fight during confirmation hearings because they know Kagan will move the court to the right.
C) She has no judicial experience
D) She stands for nothing

The White House announced today that that President Obama has nominated good friend and White House solicitor general Elana Kagan to replace Justice John Paul Stevens. Her nomination process appears to be without a significant obstacle. Which brings us back to today’s pop quiz.

Why will Kagan be the next Supreme Court Justice? Is it

A) because Clinton & Obama like and trust her, and most liberals like and trust Clinton & Obama?

That could be it. Progressives were asked to sell their souls- if you like religious metaphors- prior to the 2008 election. The mantra was “get Obama elected firsts, and then hold his feet to the fire in pursuit of a progressive agenda.” Remember? Even Progressive champions like Noam Chomsky and Naomi Wolfe converted many progressives through their preaching so that Obama could then preach to the converted.  Now that Obama is in the White House, part two of the master plan (pursue a progressive agenda) has taken a back seat to “shut the fuck up you crazy hippie pie in the sky faggot basterd communists this is the real world and there is no room for you here”.

The left has moved center, taking many self described liberals with it and left the progressive agenda dangling by its fingernails at the high end of an unevenly weighted seesaw.
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Let’s Hold Benedict Arnold Billionaire Warren Buffett Accountable

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Originally published at AlterNet. Written by Les Leopold

The derivatives genie is now well out of the bottle, and these instruments will almost certainly multiply in variety and number until some event makes their toxicity clear. Central banks and governments have so far found no effective way to control, or even monitor, the risks posed by these contracts. In my view, derivatives are financial weapons of mass destruction, carrying dangers that, while now latent, are potentially lethal. (Berkshire Hathaway annual report, 2002)

Those were some wise words from Warren Buffett, the Will Rogers of the financial world. He used to say such things at his stockholder meetings, where tens of thousands come to savor his homilies and celebrate their own good fortune–a kind of Woodstock for people who dig money more than sex, drugs and rock n roll. His fans love to party with the iconic multi-billionaire from Omaha with the sparkle in his eyes. The guy makes people feel proud to be Americans and capitalists, big and small.

Buffett’s reputation is as a straight shooter. For years he had only contempt for fantasy finance securities that contain nothing but air and risk. He was among the first to see that if we let toxic securities like synthetic collateralized debt obligations run wild, we’d soon be engulfed in a financial crisis. (For an easy to read account of these “financial weapons of mass destruction” please see The Looting of America.)

But times have changed. Today, Buffett is all about the bottom line. He’s taken to defending the biggest shysters in the country–and argues that his own questionable derivatives should be shielded from government regulators.
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Kerry, Edison and the Energy Quest

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Originally published at NYTIMES/ DOT EARTH blog. Written by Andrew Revkin

As oil flowed unabated from the Gulf of Mexico seabed, Senator John Kerry used a speech today (May 5th) at a green jobs conference in Washington, D.C., to press the case for an energy bill that speeds the country’s journey to a post-fossil future and constrains emissions of greenhouse gases.He cited a fabled remark made by Thomas Edison in a 1931 discussion with Harvey Firestone and Henry Ford on the world’s energy future (which I used in a 2006 article on declining energy research and in this 2007 magazine  story on climate choices):

I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don’t have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that.

Earlier in the year, it appeared that preserving a strong climate component in energy legislation was going to be a tough challenge, with Kerry conceding in one news story that “climate sort of follows; it’s on for the ride.” But in the prepared text of today’s speech, which is appended below, you can see he’s aiming to keep carbon constraints a central component. As he told me in an e-mailed statement in March, “Energy transformation and climate reform go hand in hand; that’s all we’re trying to communicate.”
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