"The penalty good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men." attributed to Plato

"Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing." attributed to Edmund Burke

Let's between us make the world a better place.

Monday, 3 May 2010


A couple of recent events must surely make us stop and ponder our own folly.

Apparently quite a few travellers are still stranded around the globe in the wake of the Icelandic volcano fiasco following the total shutdown of  UK air routes - this was for fear of the damaging effects of volcanic ash to the plane engines. And we have seen a glimpse of what happens to our lives when we can no longer fly. We have seen food shortages on supermarket shelves, school pupils have missed exams, and no doubt many business plans have also been disrupted. But the event has shown travellers that there are actually better, greener ways to travel, where the journey can be enjoyed as a part of the holiday. I think of trains and boats. And this forces us to slow down and enjoy what is around us.

Now we have a massive oil leakage into the Gulf of Mexico that is said to be costing $6 billion a day for British Petroleum to clean up as it threatens wildlife, fishing industries and the Florida tourist. And Barack Obama quite rightly says that whilst America will use all its available resources in the clean up, the total cost must fall to BP. BP are anxious to make it clear that the leakage was not wholly their fault although they do apparently accept at this stage the costs of the cleanup. I suspect that in the long run lawyers will be the main beneficiaries financially. And shareholders who pile in to the shares at their post leakage plummeted price will also gain financially! And those current shareholders who panic at the loss in value of their shares and pile out at the bottom will lose money - quite a lot of money. But at the end of the day what does that money matter?! The animal kingdom has to be far and away the greatest loser, and that includes not only brown pelican chicks oyster beds, tuna and much much more. And also Homo Sapiens. When are we going to wake up, and see what this awful catastrophy is showing us? How many of these disasters must happen before we realise that our greed for oil at any price is threatening our very existence, threatening our ever more precarious position in the global ecology.

There is plenty for us to reflect upon from these two events.

Simon Barnes in the Times a couple of days ago has said it all: "Our addiction to oil is madness - it is time to act."

and another insightful article Spill Baby Spill.

What do YOU think?

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