Revolution Online, May 3 2010
For Immediate Release
Monday, May 3, 2010
Gulf Oil Spill: System Not Fit To Be Caretaker of the Planet
Raymond Lotta and Orpheus Available for Interviews
The explosion of the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform that killed 11 workers on April 20 threatens to become a massive and perhaps unparalleled environmental disaster. Current estimates are that 200,000 gallons a day are gushing out of the sea floor, one mile beneath the surface. The spill endangers fragile marshes, ponds, creeks, lakes, and other wetlands making up 40 percent of U.S. total wetlands. Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries estimates that at least 400 species—from shrimp to pelicans to river otters—could be impacted by the oil, including a dozen listed under the Endangered Species Act.
This is a capitalist oil spill. The Gulf of Mexico has been turned into a vast laboratory for deep-water oil drilling to serve capitalism's relentless drive for profit and strategic control of energy resources. Official U.S. government policy has encouraged this—and has refused to require use of the most advanced technology to stop disasters exactly like this. The inconvenient truth is that this oil leak could have been prevented. But it is "cost-effective" for companies like British Petroleum to scrimp on safety and environmental protection measures and equipment.
The capitalist system depends on highly profitable and environmentally destructive fossil fuels. Remember, the Obama administration just a month ago proposed massively expanding offshore U.S. drilling, while President Obama himself offered this assurance: "oil rigs today generally don't cause spills." And this comes after the deliberate failure—engineered mainly by the U.S.—of the December 2009 Copenhagen climate talks to take any meaningful action to stop global warming.
This is outrageous and immoral. What is happening in the Gulf points to the reality that the capitalist system is unable and unwilling to protect the planet and the people.
Raymond Lotta and Orpheus bring a unique communist perspective to global environmental issues:
- They point to what is driving the push to expand offshore drilling.
- They analyze why capitalism is the root cause of the planetary environmental crisis.
- They show why only revolution and socialism are capable of creating a socially just and environmentally sustainable society.
Raymond Lotta is the author of America in Decline and of Maoist Economics and the Revolutionary Road to Communism; he has been interviewed by the BBC and Agence France-Presse. Orpheus writes on issues of the environment and the antiglobalization movement. Both contributed to the Special Environmental issue of Revolution newspaper, "State of Emergency! The Plunder Of Our Planet, The Environmental Catastrophe and The Real Revolutionary Solution" (revcom.us/a/199/emergency-en.html).
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