In a cynical political maneuver to outflank the Republican oil driller lobby, President Obama has approved offshore drilling for most of the south Atlantic coast. The oil industry claims that drilling is environmentally safe and will help wean the U.S. from foreign oil. Both claims are false. The recoverable reserves from the Atlantic coast would provide only a few days of US oil consumption.
The safety of offshore drilling is a matter of chance regardless of the cautions observed by the workers. The website below documents drilling disasters that have spilled millions of gallons of oil offshore. The offshore Atlantic current flows north, so any accident endangers the entire north Atlantic coast.
“Soooouuuuweee! Yipyipyip!” is not a usual sound you’d expect to hear bouncing of the granite walls of downtown Pittsburgh’s financial district. Farm folks, however, would recognize it immediately as a way to get the hogs scrambling over to the trough to feed.
But that was the point of the April 1 rally called by the area’s AFL-CIO leaders demanding a massive jobs program. They were trying to focus the attention of political leaders on Wall Street and the need to tax its billions, especially given the huge public bailout, to finance a new green manufacturing and clean energy industrial expansion.
“Labor creates all their wealth to begin with,” declared Rev. Ken Love, a Presbyterian minister, to the crowd of about 50 at the City-County Building. He pointed to a large chart showing the billions in profits and bonuses, along with the billions in bailout money, gathered by the largest Wall St investment banks over the past year. “All that wealth came from us, but it’s not being used it our interest. Now’s the time to use it to create new jobs.”