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Good questions Mitch:
 BP's rig the
Deepwater Horizon at 1,260 meters above the ocean floor operates at but half the depth of the Independence Hub floating 2,414 meters above the ocean bottom.  These are but two of the 6669 platforms and rigs active and removed of which 819 are presently still fully manned.  In other words Deepwater Horizon was but one unlucky match in the tinder box and BP but one of the oligopoly that produces 23% of US oil out of the gulf (about 2% of global production).

Of even more significance is the pattern of consumption in the US (See attached chart.).  2/3 of oil consumed in US goes for transportation.  The many idle and torn-up RR tracks are in part the consequence of deliberate policy decisions almost 60 years ago that resulted in the building of a network of highways to accommodate trucking and the consciously stimulated emerging two-car per family households.  Gentrification in the cities as old factory buildings became apartments, office suites, etc and the newer industries established production facilities in circumurban industrial developments required inner city workers to commute to work outside the city center with no choice but gas guzzling clunkers.  Why no choice?  Because there has been no significant investment in public transportation.  Then when the current crisis threatened to terminate the US auto industry and it came suckling at the federal teats, instead of using federal funds to retrain auto workers and put them to work in a massive program to build modern public transportation, the auto industry was pumped up and the government instituted incentives for the purchase of new cars.  And what is our role?  We complain about risky oil rigs and industry and government malfeasance; but do not suggest, promote and campaign for the rational alternatives that are actually realizable under this dysfunctional system.

Consider another relationship.  Bringing home the military in the present economy with 15 million unemployed
would tip the scale.  It doesn't have the capacity to absorb more workers.   But bringing them home to build infrastructure would save money and reduce oil consumption.

Our country is one big cauldron of boiling rage and dissatisfaction.  What is need is a positive program that can unite large numbers who don't necessarily have to agree on everything.  What those who have a revolutionary perspective must grasp is that the experience of struggling for reasonable reforms and thereby discovering from where the opposition comes and the irrationality of its defense of the status quo is the school in which people learn who the enemy is, who they can trust, and how they have much more in common with their neighbors than with the turkeys in Washington.

Yes, that's a rant, and i'm not sorry.  And yes i am doing something about it, not just ranting.  We don't have much time.
herb




On 6/11/2010 7:47 PM, Mitchel Cohen wrote:
[log in to unmask]" type="cite">Questions:

1) BP is, unfortunately, the only corporation under attack for this devastating catastrophic gusher in the Gulf.

Is there a list -- or better yet a MAP -- of where all of the deep sea oil drillers are located?

2) Many of these would be in international waters, I suspect. Does the US Coast Guard or other national agency of any country have jurisdiction? If not, who does?

If no one, does that mean that every deep sea oil driller can do whatever it wants? Maritime Law? International Law?

And if so, does that mean that any non-state actor (activist, ecologist) can take whatever measures THEY want with impunity as well, so long as they're in international waters?


Thanx.

Mitchel