Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Russia’s Invasion of Georgia, Oil and the Effects of Panic on the Environment

The Russians have invaded Georgia, again. When is the UN going to effectively sanction countries, including our own, for illegally invading other countries? The Russians waited for world attention to focus on the coming Olympics to add yet another invasion notch to their Soviet/Russian belt of aggressive oppression: Georgia (the first time) - 1921, Finland and Poland - 1939, Hungary - 1956, Czechoslovakia - 1968, Afghanistan - 1979, Georgia (for the second time) - 2008, who's next??? Are they trying to reconstitute the Soviet Union or is this strictly to gain possession of Georgia's oil pipeline and wield greater international power? Considering Russia's considerable natural resources, including huge quantites of oil, is the USA going to politically and economically sanction, boycott, or ignore this invasion? Since Bush has not developed any real diplomatic relationship (neither Bush's strength nor focus) with Putin, US-Russian diplomatic talks are unlikely to have any impact on this indefensible invasion.

The widespread panic over skyrocketing oil prices in the USA is creating a panic-driven shift in public opinion on the questions of nuclear energy, offshore drilling, and drilling in ANWR. Speculators, investors, oil companies, and oil lobbyists are all profiting from these high prices. When people panic, reason and forethought often go out the window. They readily believe, without question, the disinformation from product defense ads and commericials. The panic over high prices has erased any semblence of hunkering down, thinking calmly, working together, demanding the use of existing viable alternatives, and protecting our environment for the future of our species.

There have been superlative reasons not to pursue our investment in nuclear power - security, safety, public health, and waste disposal and storage. These have not changed! One nuclear accident will spill over to irradiate millions of people, plants and animals (remember Chernobyl?), and render the affected land sterile and uninhabitable for thousands of years.

The original reasons for prohibiting offshore drilling and drilling in ANWR have also not changed. Think about the security of our food supply, namely fish, crustaceans and seaweed, and put this in the same thoughts as offshore drilling and accidents (Exxon Valdez, anyone?). Obviously, they are not compatible. Drilling in ANWR will also not magically solve the oil crisis, but it will forever change an untouched wilderness. Experts state the oil will not reach the market for approximately 10 years. This, obviously, will not help us now. Also, let's not forget that we have our own untapped strategic reserves. Think about why we're not tapping what is readily available, yet are being directed to open up yet more avenues to profit for Big Oil!

I believe that our government leaders, lobbyists, and the automotive, oil and chemical industries have purposefully and successfully conspired to block or remove any shift to sustainable energy alternatives. The electric car (which was purposefully pulled from the market), solar and wind power have been around for years and could have been subsidized and developed for a safe, clean, sustainable, secure energy supply. Instead, oil companies have been given millions of dollars in subsidies by our government leaders (many of whom have been suspected and/or convicted of bribery and corruption, go figure. Also, how coincidental is it that gas prices have dropped just in time for Congress to go on vacation?). It is only now, with the full weight of public pressure and scrutiny that Big Oil has embarked upon a campaign of, oh, what a shock, disinformation and self-published positive publicity about all they do for us. Hopefully very few naive citizens buy it, though.

Yes, I am a treehugger. I believe that when you damage the earth and its plants and animals, you also ultimately hurt the human species. Let's not allow the powers that be trick us into panic-driven, short-term decisions influenced by disinformation and red herrings that take our collective eyes off the ball of our future, only to continue to enrich their already overflowing coffers.

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