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I’m With Palin

I’m With Palin

WARNING: I am about to rant. I almost never rant. This means I am really mad. For your sake, however, I will try to keep this short.

Sarah Palin is in the news again, having blamed environmentalists for the Gulf oil spill.

Guess what? I agree with her.

It drives me nuts how many people (yes, you) say they oppose “America’s dependence on oil” and then get in their automobiles and drive to work every day without even carpooling.

People, over 7 years have passed since we started an oil war in Iraq. The better part of a decade! And you were mad about the war when it started, right? But you still haven’t figured out how to stop driving your car around, have you?

I’m no better, let’s get that straight. Well, a little better, because I gave up my car over 3 years ago and still managed to travel across the whole entire nation. But I’m only a little better. My boyfriend drives a gas-guzzler, and we go for road trips, and he teases me about how my environmentalist poop don’t stink while aiming to get his truck to a solid 15mpg.

But listen, here’s the thing: I am not sitting around complaining about Sarah Palin and British Petroleum, as if they caused the Deepwater oil spill. I’m not trying to pretend this is somebody else’s fault.

If you are: SHUT UP YOU.

I do not want to hear one more person talking about how Sarah Palin and BP are the enemy. Enemy what? They wouldn’t exist if you hadn’t created them.

In my opinion, friends, if you are blaming anyone other than yourself for the BP oil spill, you are dumb. Palin understands the issue far better than you do.

Your hypocrisy is showing. You’re not preventing environmental hazards; you’re outsourcing them and making drilling more dangerous. – Sarah Palin on environmentalists who oppose oil drilling on U.S. territory

You can’t ban domestic oil drilling while simultaneously gobbling up oil, unless you want wars in the Middle East and South America and huge gigantic oil spills off the Gulf Coast.

Remembering to recycle most of the time does not excuse you from your egregious personal dependence on oil and oil products. Scapegoating politicians and corporations does not make you a better person.

So, shut up you. I’m voting for Palin (just kidding, but I sure won’t be voting Democrat).

Ok I’m done.

/rant

25 Comments

  • I’ll deny this later, ’cause agreeing with Palin is like agreeing with a rock, but I was talking to my oldest son about this earlier. Yes, BP messed p big time. But we asked them to. We asked them to drill more oil, get more oil, sell us more oil. There are a few thousand household items that start their life as petrol. It’s like a drug addict being pissed at the dealer. Dude, we’re all to blame here.

    • AMEN. Why am I not surprised you feel the same way? I like the head on your shoulders, miss.

  • Oh no….. the Google ad on this page says “BP Spill Blame Obama? Vote Here Now!”

  • Honestly, I only recently realized how my car’s oil-guzzling habits were the real culprit behind the oil spill. So I’ve decided to go without my car. But yes, I think people should realize that it is exactly the act of filling up their car with oil that propels oil spills.

    • I think they do, but in a really irresponsible way, like it’s all the OTHER people who fill up their cars that are the real problem. I love this headline from The Onion:

      “‘How Bad For The Environment Can Throwing Away One Plastic Bottle Be?’ 30 Million People Wonder”
      http://www.theonion.com/articles/how-bad-for-the-environment-can-throwing-away-one,2892/

      Good on ya for giving up the car. It’s sometimes easier not to drive in the Bay Area, too.

  • I *just* had this conversation with YP and some friends like, 2 days ago. This thing is so big that I can’t comment on it bcause I can’t even wrap my head around it. What makes it worse for me is that we have a car for the first time in a decade because we aren’t living in NYC anymore.
    I feel angry because there was no emergency plan for if something like this happened. I am annoyed because I feel like they are not trying EVERY POSSIBLE THING (including things that may seem crazy) to stop the hemorrhaging.
    I heard a statistic that this puts the exxon valdez to shame a thousand times over and that this hole isn’t even leaking the amount of oil that is used in Texas IN ONE DAY!
    So I think people are angry without even be able to comprehend the enormity of this tragedy.
    Rant on dear Hun.

  • Ps… I wrote this comment while sitting IN the gas station.
    Watta a-hole.

    • Ha!

      You’re not an a-hole.

  • While I am inclined to agree with you, what about the ruthless pursuit of the largest profit margin possible being the motivation behind cutting overhead costs by NOT installing blow-out preventer or whatever safeguards they avoided having to install by bribing gov’t oversight officials?

    I mean, I HEAR you – we all need to act locally and take responsibility (by not wasting all that fuel to go to Burning Man to get drunk in the desert …) but we also need to change the corporate culture in America and bring about strong business ethics – and we CAN do this. The one thing Business listens to is the voice of enough of their clients that together constitute a threat to their sacred bottom line.

    • While I believe and agree with you, I think it would be even harder to organize American consumers to stop buying from certain multinational, multi-brand-name conglomerates (BP, for example, owns Arco&am/pm) than to organize them to use their cars less.

      And honestly, I think an attitude of bottom-up change is the only way to alter the mindsets of our corporate overlords. We have to learn to need THEM less, so they will listen to US more.

  • To be clear – I think Burning Man is great and all, but why not relocate the main event to some festival grounds in the Bay Area and pump the Regionals more. Srsly, the amount of fuel expended getting everyone out to BM alone is STUNNING. Then there’s all the Go Juice used to run generators 24/7 to power lights and techno … tragic really.

  • good one Father Mayhem. The go juice is only the tip of the iceberg on the long list of things BM does to create a HUGE carbon foot print. Seriously tragic.

  • Before a significant number of people can give up cars, American cities (and sprawl) need to be redesigned. We need to work closer to where we live, or we need to live closer to where we work, or we need useful mass transit (which doesn’t exist at all out here in rural USA.) I’m lucky that I can walk to work every day (unusual for rural Indiana), but a weekend trip to visit friends is a minimum of a sixty mile round trip in my old truck (And that’s a “local” trip.) The only alternative available is to never visit them.

    But imagine trying to institute change. “No, you can’t live where you do any more because the government thinks it’s a waste of resources.”

    We’re in a weird place because only radical change seems likely to make a difference in the near future, but I doubt that any large group of people could cooperate to make it happen.

    Lots of people are angry about this oil spill now, when the flow is stopped and the the worst of the visible damage from shore is cleaned up or hidden many people will still care, but fewer than at this moment. And when the news cycle moves on to the next big thing, fewer people will remain acutely agitated.

    I’m not saying that no one will care, or only a small segment of the population, just that reaching the critical mass to implement significant change is going to require something that I can’t imagine today.

    • Once again, I gotta say, I find it more believable that people will make individual changes, than that they’ll band together and get the government, or the businesses, to change.

      “No, you can’t live where you do any more because the government thinks it’s a waste of resources.” – yeah that’s hilarious. To be honest, I feel like it’s time to cut the government out of the loop a little. We are expecting too much of such a hoary beast.

  • Its more complicated than that. People have been warning that we will run out of oil since the 70′s. People have been ranting against being held hostage by the middle east and their oil since Jimmy Carter. Has anyone taken it seriously enough to develop an alternative? No… in fact we SUBSIDIZE the oil industry with taxpayer money at BILLIONS of dollars a year http://cleantech.com/news/node/554

    What do you think might happen if we spent some of that money on developing alternative technologies instead? Gas might be a little more expensive, but eventually we would have a way out. Instead, we’re just “drill baby drilling” our way to an end of our economy with no real alternative in sight. And your post just gave kudo’s to one of the biggest morons of all time who has no alternatives, either.

    Its noble of you to give up your car and driving and to think that will make a difference. So lets expand that logic out….. everyone stops driving, buying any products that have anything to do with petroleum (pretty much everything, including food)…. and that does what for our economy where 15 million people currently do not have a job?

    Hopping on Sarah Palin’s bandwagon? Think it through.

    • Hi Jen.

      You’re right, it is more complicated than my little rant. I assure you, I’m not actually jumping on anybody’s bandwagon. Not much of a bandwagon-jumper, to be honest. And I certainly wouldn’t hitch a ride with Sarah Palin. However, I do agree with her on this particular point. The thrust of this post was not to actually promote her as a leader, but to get the attention of my readers and fellow passive-environmentalist types who are accustomed to demonizing Palin and her compatriots instead of examining the issues and taking concrete action. A closer reading of this post will likely make that more clear; if it doesn’t, that’s my fault for not expressing it as well as I could have.

      Your first point: yes, I am just as angry as you are about the fact that we continue to subsidize the production of oil.

      Your second point: I fully agree and have always supported the development of alternative technologies and energy sources; I happen to believe quite strongly that their development should proceed in tandem with a mass re-evaluation of power use, resulting in a more responsible way of living on the individual, civic and national levels.

      Strongly disagree that Sarah Palin is “one of the biggest morons of all time.” She’s just a politician, and using such hyperbole gives her more credit than she is due.

      As for your last point, that if people stop driving it will put 15 million Americans out of a job… well, to be frank, I’m sure you see the logical implausibility of that argument, and I’m going to discount it entirely. If you really believe that, by all means, try to convince me.

      I don’t have cable but will try to catch Gasland. Thanks for the tip. As for the environmental hazards of continued gas drilling, I am once again just as angry as you are about it, and have taken several steps to reduce my own dependence on oil drilling both foreign and domestic. I hope you have done and will continue to do the same, while also spreading your message. You obviously have a lot of knowledge and passion on this topic too. Don’t stop fighting the good fight.

    • I get it – we’re all on the same side, and you’re right – being an armchair environmentalist is not enough. I don’t think that is what Palin was talking about, though.

      The gist of Palin’s comment:
      “On her Facebook page, she explained, that if “extreme environmentalists” were not so successful in prohibiting land based oil drilling in the United States, then companies like BP would not have to resort to looking for oil in the deep oceans.”

      The reality is that under Cheney/Bush, we opened up our public lands with a gentleman’s agreement not to regulate them practically at all – and boy have they taken advantage of it. Using Sarah’s logic, and the main point of her comment, she would like us to regulate them even less. She would actually like to use the BP Oil spill as an excuse to regulate the oil and gas industry LESS. If you like, read the memo posted – its not that long, and might make more sense if you are able to catch Gasland (highly recommend it… if its coming to HBO, then it will probably be out soon on DVD). Then take a flight with a window seat from Dallas to San Diego and see how much of your flight is spent flying over oil or natural gas wells. Environmentalists, unfortunately, have not succeeded in stopping or even fairly regulating onshore drilling.

      Regarding stopping driving – I said “stopping driving and buying any products that have anything to do with petroleum.” Here’s a partial list of products made with or with the help of petroleum http://www.ranken-energy.com/Products%20from%20Petroleum.htm. They don’t call our economy a “petroleum based economy” for nothing. I think its great to cut down on your driving, buy more energy efficient cars, mowers, whatever. Sadly, though, that’s not going to solve the problem.

      Petroleum is a finite resource. And we as a country are very slow on the uptake – or arrogant, or both. I live in Texas. A chinese company just opened up an office in Dallas to build wind turbines. A french company just opened a wind turbine assembly plant in Amarillo. Now – thanks for the jobs, foreign countries… but how dumb are we that we are STILL not on the green energy bandwagon, and will now be playing catch up with china? And they are using our resources to create green energy? Boom! My head just exploded.

      Meanwhile, you’ve got Sarah Palin. I disagree that she is just a politician. She is a sociopath who somehow got her hands onto the controls of the “angry mob” joystick… and anything that comes out of her loudspeaker mouth is designed to whip these folks up into a frenzy. The people she is casually whipping into a frenzy include militia members and people who like to drop the Thomas Jefferson “blood of patriots” quote every time the guy they wanted in office loses (generally a republican or libertarian). The same folks who show to Obama ralleys toting assault rifles “because they can”. Olivia Snowe is just a politician. John McCain is just a politician. Sarah Palin is the world’s biggest moron. She is Dick Cheney’s wet dream. Cheney sneared at the environmentalists who wanted a seat at the table to help develop our energy policy; now China is quietly opening green energy offices in the US, while a significant portion of our population STILL thinks that Sarah Palin was brilliant with her “drill baby drill” chant.

      So, that was my rant. Your rant inspired my rant. I’m sure we’re all pretty much on the same page, but you won’t find me “with Palin”, even in jest, in this lifetime.

    • Right on. Thanks for the food for thought! We disagree on a couple of the finer points, but definitely: we’re on the same team.

      Stick around, please, and participate in the conversation. You’ve got some great opinions and I’d love to hear more of what you have to say.

  • PS – if you really think we’re over regulating the oil and gas industry and forcing them to “outsource”, watch this movie when it comes out on HBO in June
    http://www.gaslandthemovie.com/

    And after you watch the movie and see the people with flames coming out of their water faucets due to our lax environmental standards on natural gas drilling, read this memo where you will learn about the diesel fuel being pumped into our environment under the heading of “fraking water” – the contents of which were made proprietary compliments of Dick Cheney’s energy task force – so being proprietary, the EPA was not allowed to know whats in it in order to regulate it (again, watch gasland to see the results)

    http://energycommerce.house.gov/Press_111/20100218/hydraulic_fracturing_memo.pdf

    • I have a problem with the “oh its cute that you think that by (not driving a car/not buying plastic/recycling) you are doing something” mentality.
      We are single people and we can only be responsible for our own actions and many of us are, in fact cutting back on petroleum products. We can do for ourselves and we can try to be an example to other people by our actions.
      its all we got.
      and just because everyone isnt moving to a cave doesnt mean that the actions that we take are not meaningful. an “all or nothing” policy gets us nowhere faster.

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  • I never ever thought that I’d see the day when you wrote the words “I’m with Palin” in a public forum — however — you make a lot of salient points here.

    My friend Joe also put it a good way: “If [our country] is not willing to break this addiction to burning dirty shit we dangerously dig out of remote parts of the earth (ie: oil), spare me the outrage over whether Obama is stemming the cataclysm fast enough.”

    Personally — I haven’t owned a car since 2003. I pub trans or walk most places. When I absolutely have to drive someone I car share or do Zip Car (most of which are hybrids at this point) – so I feel more justified in being morally indignant about the oil spill.

    It’s not a black-white issue, though – every single person in this country from the greenest of environmentalist to the most Panda-skinning, whale hunting, oil-drilling, non-recycling conservative is to blame for this situation. And, we all have a crucial task in front of us to a.) fix it and b.) leave the Earth in good condition when we pass it onto generations to come.

    Though: Palin claiming that off shore drilling is still safe and a viable way to reduce our dependency on foreign oil is like watching a junkie arguing that heroin is a palliative… it’s ridiculous and untrue.

  • http://crooksandliars.com/node/37586

    Click the link for another perspective. As much as I agree that we need to take personal responsibility, things are not that simple, and public policy does matter. It’s not silly at all to point the finger at Cheney/Halliburton and the policies of the previous administration for setting the stage for this accident.

    Sarah Palin? Whatever. She is just a pundit of no consequence.

  • [...] I’m with Palin [...]

  • I think everyone should shut up and stop passing the buck. We all are in this together, whether you want to believe this or not. No one generation created this disaster, although big business has a heavier burden than most. If anyone cares to research this, we had engines that ran on far less oil decades ago, but they were dismissed in favor of profits. Yes sorry to say, if you want to find the truth, follow the money trail. Please don’t think I’m not in favor of capitalism, I am. But not at the expense of the earth and the living creatures ( and people ) that inhabit it. What we are experiencing is a “me first ” attitude that I don’t see it abating any time soon. I applaud young people that ride bicycles, but I’m too old and handicapped. But I do drive a Prius. I am working at being off grid, but heat has to come from some where. Don’t think that you can rant and point fingers, because unfortunately, politics aren’t going to change unless you change them. I am a Boomer, but our time has passed. It’s time for new thoughts, new energy and a new America. I dream of freedom from all the corruption. That would truly be a small carbon footprint.

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