Yes, you read that correctly. I do not subscribe to the idea that BP is to blame for the oil spill. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely believe that BP is responsible for the spill, but I do not blame them for it. And no, I’m not a shill for Exxon!
Blaming BP means buying into that whole, “corporations are people” nonsense that republicans like to spew. You see, in order to blame BP for this disaster, you must believe that BP should have a moral compass. You would have to buy into the idea that BP should have imposed stronger safety measures on itself because that would be the right thing to do. Can you see how that doesn’t work?
BP, like any corporation, has one and ONLY one objective; to make as much money as they possibly can. They have a fiduciary responsibility to their shareholders. They do not have a moral responsibility to the planet (or anyone else). They don’t have a conscience and they don’t have feelings that can be hurt, nor should they.
You’re naive if you expect them to. As a shareholder, I need for the company that I invest in to have the sole objective of increasing the value of my shares in the company. Corporations should be nothing more than money (and job) creating machines.
It is the government’s job to protect the health and well being of its citizens.
I blame the Bush and Obama administrations for this. They should have been the moral compass. They should have made sure that the drilling operation was safe for the workers and the ocean. They should have regulated them more thoroughly, and they certainly shouldn’t have entertained the notion of issuing waivers rather than inspections.
In a healthy society, the government and the corporations would have an adversarial relationship. Each side pushing against the other with conflicting agendas. The corporations’ profit motive should be clashing with the government’s objective to protect the health and well being of citizenry.
That’s not what we have here. We have a government that is nearly entirely bought and paid for by the corporations. They’re not adversaries, they’re allies. And they’re aligned against we, the people.
Here’s where I should go off on a tangent about publicly financed elections, but I’m going to save that for another (or several) posts.
My point in this post is that BP isn’t where our focus should be here. If you’re blaming them while at the same time insisting that corporations are not people, then you need to reexamine your philosophy to come up with something more consistent. I go on and on about conservative hypocrisy. Here’s an area where liberals need to check themselves. Blaming BP for not policing themselves is like blaming a lion for hunting deer. It’s what they do.
No the blame here lies squarely on the shoulders of our government. They failed to protect us and they failed to protect our environment.