Walter Rhett

Boom and the Leak Stops: An Open Letter to the President

In National Government on May 2, 2010 at 10:42 am

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I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for some real socialism. I don’t mean the mamby kind that gathers citizens on town greens every week for the TV op, complete with homemade signs on tall poles that protesters wave to make sure we get the message at home. I don’t mean the kind that is angry over taxes that have been cut, or health care that has been expanded, or exasperated over guns that are still allowed to be purchased and carried, or that sees cynical signs of cabals in every spin report gleamed from talk shows. I want real, European Lenin-style socialism. Socialism that takes control, breaks the rules, and uses the military to do its business. Lean and mean socialism. And I want Obama to bring now.

I want socialism because I like shrimp. I like oysters,too. And I hate what is about to happen to the Gulf.

The US is about to experience its greatest natural disaster in its history, losing its most important fishing bank in the Gulf that supplies 70% of America’s shrimp and oysters and for generations has provided a living and a way of life for thousands on its shores. People and wildlife are sustained by its beaches and shores.

But it’s not just jobs and fish for purchase that leave me disheartened, angry, outraged, and devastated. It is the loss, by human hands, of some more precious, almost unspeakable. Something we breathe in and cherish, something we believe in, that shapes life’s course by grandly giving evidence of nature’s indomitable cycle: birth, beauty, independent will, timeless strength and charm.

Soon this will be all gone. Because of our own worst practices.

BP, the corporate owners of the offshore well, did not see fit (and nor did the government require) to install a $500K acoustic shut-off switch—required in Europe—that automatically triggers the shut down of a blown well.

Right now, our only option is a drastic dose of socialism: use the military to blow the well and cap the flow. Surely, if we can drop laser-guided missile’s on Saddam’s palace, and use drones to blow terrorists out of Afghan caves, we can use the US Navy’s Arleigh Burke class of Aegis destroyers to drop torpedoes or missiles with non-nuclear warheads on a dime, underwater, at a depth of 5,000 feet.

In two days, Navy experts can figure out how to set off an explosion that will close the well. In two days, all of the fears of a nation can be quelled.


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In two days, the coastlines of three states can be saved.

In two days, by overriding the posse comitas act of 1878, for which George W. Bush had already established the precedents for Presidential authority in times of eminent national danger, (as well as a Congressional 2007 act authorizing US military intervention in domestic affairs when “constituted authorities are incapable of maintaining public order”) our nation’s worst disaster can be ended. Public order, which includes billion dollar industries and thousands of jobs, the protection of beaches, fish, and wildlife, the fragile ecosystem of the Gulf and its bays, can be restored.

With a strong dose of socialism, through the government’s mace of power, the lambs and lions can sit together in peace on this one. Bill O’Reilly and Keith Oberman can smile as they throw barbs at each other.

Save the Gulf Coast. We have the means.
“Socialism” gives us the moral authority and legal precedent.
Boom and the leak stops.

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(Photos: Tampa Bay.com, Accu-Weather.com; google images, used under fair use; for educational purposes.)

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