Thursday, May 27, 2010

Dispatches from a Disaster -- Continued

Evening of Bats, A New Ecosystem, Waiting for Tides of Oil

Paul K. Haeder as told by Marc Gauthier Down to Earth NW special column

He hopes that these piney woods hold up while he heads to the Gulf. He’s liking the temperate coniferous forest with all those hardwoods like hickory and oak creating a lush canopy while he zips along in his sub-compact with kayak strapped to the top.

He knows about the darter fish in this ecosystem, one he’s never experienced. And the small-footed bat and all those migratory birds living in this temperate forest, he’s seeing them. No matter how wet the tent gets and how little sleep he is able to wrestle out of the night, today he’s liking the chances of getting deeper into the green.

But things change quickly, as Marc goes into Louisiana. Scattered dilapidated oil infrastructure is what he is seeing. Twisted, abandoned and lots of it. There are a whole lot of small-and lower-income communities he bisects on his way to the Gulf of Mexico. He makes it to the small state park at the end of Highway 1, after threading through back roads that took him through the heart of resource taking and refining country.

He arrived at Grand Isle at 10 p.m. wondering what the trip now will unfold, as the place looks like impending doom with National Guardsmen and their gear all over, as well as every other sort of official setting up oil response teams.

The next day, he runs into people like John Sparks, from Clinton, Miss., an engineer who fishes out of a kayak. This place is so special, so abundant, that after fishing all around the U.S., Sparks kept returning here. For years.

Marc notices the 44-year-old engineer is expressing a sense of nostalgia as he talks about catching fish and eating oysters fresh off his boat.

It’s all the sea life that is getting Marc pumped up. He is amazed at how unique and rich this place is, and while talking with Sparks, Marc realizes that he’s now witness to a place and a culture in the throes of huge upheaval and pending doom, ecologically and culturally speaking. Sparks tells Marc that it was his wife who urged him to take this trip so early in the season, instead of the typical summer July fishing outing.

“’This might be the last time you will see this place like it is and should be,’ she told me. I guess she’s right in saying I better get a taste of what I love while I can,” Sparks muses.

Marc doesn’t have to prod the engineer to lay blame on British Petroleum for this. The mess was caused because BP did not having the blow-out preventer that all other countries in the world require for offshore drilling. The pressure at 5,000 feet under the sea is 2,200 pounds per square inch. The blowout is now one huge engulfing underwater dead zone, as oil mixes in with sediment and salt as all that aromatic benzene breaks away.

Marc is floored by the few shrimpers now moving along in the bay, impressed at how much sea life is so close to shore. He’s decided to go incognito, so to speak, with a fishing net on hand and camo hat so he can skirt the ever-growing presence of BP and other members of official-dom who are restricting access to beaches, to the barrier islands, to the booms that are supposedly holding at bay some of the millions of gallons of oil spewing into the sea.

“It’s sort of heartbreaking just talking with some of these guys,” Marc says. “One man I spoke with worked his entire life to save up and build a retirement house, a million bucks worth, just to fish out his life. Now he can’t go out, and who knows how much damage will be done.”

He’s at one of the few areas still more or less pristine, an inner bay where shrimpers are frantically pulling in catches and freezing them, not knowing when the bay will be closed down to all fishing.
There’s a central command area run by the Coast Guard with BP reps and sheriff’s deputies on hand. None of the ones we need to be talking with us, explaining the situation, want to comment on camera. One fellow pulled out a photograph of Grand Isle’s harbor and beaches from 2009. It’s bustling with tourists and fishers.

Marc says it’s almost empty now.

Marc’s looking to get on a boat, so he can go out and study and film the bay and surrounding ecosystems.

There’s a lingering bad taste in his mouth that is hard to swallow: BP’s blood (oil) money. One guy Marc spoke to received a BP payment of $5,000 for the temporary damage to his fishing operation.
That barely pays for the electricity. There’s $7,000 more he has to come up to pay employees who won’t be continuing working. He might end up going bankrupt.

The devil rays, all those shrimp, even powerful porpoises are still in the bay as a reminder of how fertile and abundant the Gulf is. For Marc, though, he’s feeling the dread – old men looking out at the sea, with broken hearts as they wait for oil to hit shore.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Dispatches from a Disaster -- Continued

[Note -- This series is starting to pick up steam and get lots of interest. It's on the Spokesman Review web site, as its own tab, and We'll keep PacifiCAD informed by posting the dispatches here. This oil disaster is bigger than the national media or pundits or others are making it out to be, or not to be.]

Honeysuckle Evening, Blue Creeks, Night of the Flood, Don’t Be An Armadillo on the Road

By Paul K. Haeder as told by Marc Gauthier

Marc listens to thunder right above his Ozark National Forest canopy. The lightning seeps through the tent. Then, at 1 a.m. he feels around the tent floor. “I felt like I was on a water bed. The rain was pouring on my tent.”

He ended up ditching the tent to kip for a few hours in the car. He was pumped up about seeing these trees, the cypress, the oaks. Swamps and a few bayous have caught his eye. It was his first time in Arkansas, and Kansas. He was 30 miles from El Dorado, on the Arkansas-Louisiana border.

He’s been seeing a lot of timber operations, coal- fired plants, swollen rivers, signs of flooding. The Southern drawl is growing on him. He could tell he was getting into humid semi-tropics when he started seeing dead armadillos on the side of the road.

He’s heartened by the fact that people he approaches in parking lots are accepting and want to talk. His goal is to make camp today, Saturday, at the end of Highway 1, south of Baton Rouge and New Orleans, 10 miles west of the mouth of the Mississippi.

He’s thinking Leevile and Grand Isle will be his El Dorado – where he can come face-to-face with park rangers and fisher folk.“I’m hoping I can hook up with a fishing boat and get a lift out to one of the wildlife refuges.”

He’s been seeing a lot of poverty, trailers, old cars, especially in the small towns, contrasted by the freeways and big cities where “everyone drives these new big rigs.” More and more he’s seeing African- Americans not just in the bigger cities but in the rural areas. It reminds him of his Michigan of his youth – green, lots of trees.

He got to ask a 33-year-old wife of a military pilot about the oil spill. Mikia Simon is concerned that the oil disaster will affect her husband’s mission. She believes we all are responsible for the oil spill, but “drilling in 5,000 feet of ocean raises a lot of red flags … . Digging for trouble, you find it, that’s for sure.”

Mikia wanted to talk off-camera, but wished Marc good luck on his trip.

The standing water, lush trees, the little side trip into Little Rock (where he saw all sorts of tributes to Bill Clinton), the Southern person-to-person contact, all of it is making Marc feel as if he has entered into another world.

He’s hoping the bay he’s heading to will be one of the brighter moments on the trip. Maybe clean shores. Good fishing. A place to build relationships so he might be able to continue east and explore, film and pen further “Dispatches from a Disaster,” now sub-titled – “Dispatches from a Changing Personal Narrative.”

To see video of the spill visit

Thursday, May 20, 2010

May 14: Where oh where did Colorado Mountain High Go?

NOTE: We're talking about 4 million gallons of oil a day. BP is a culprit beyond culprits, and investigations on their leak on the North Slope were stopped. That's 120 thousand barrels a day of oil, so, what will USA do about it? What will Obama do? What can you do? For now, though, I continue this Dispatches from a Disaster series as Marc is in the Gulf Coast. This one is Day Two, as he made his way down, from Spokane.

Day of Cattle Trucks, Oil Derricks, Wind

by Paul K. Haeder as told by Marc Gauthier

“What happened to all the talk about population? You know, as a kid growing up in the 80s, there were stories and debates about population, about over-farming the land. Where’s that talk now?” he asks while lifting out of the Colorado Rockies.

He ended up not finding that John Denver freedom in the mountains, having to spend the night in a big KOA campground. The soot and ground-level ozone lifted even 6,000 feet into the Rockies. Marc is thinking a lot about the trip’s impact on oil and greenhouse gasses.
He said while tuning into radio stations, he heard a report saying that just in the past five years, 12 percent of good farmland had been lost in the state of Colorado.

Seeing all the people in Denver, all the cars and trucks on the road, Marc let the trigger hit him – he just wants to hunt, fish and grow his own food soon. “Yeah, I think about how this trip impacts the world, and climate. At least I am doing good. The trip and the film will impact my life.”

He was shocked at how many oil derricks are pumping in Kansas, near Salinas. Saw a coal-fired electrical plant. Then went by a 400-turbine wind farm.

But it’s all those semis moving stuff, “addicted to all of this shit,” he said, that’s killing his spirit. The trip is making him think about how after just 100 years of using fossil fuel it’s half gone, plus all the pollution, after taking millions of years to make it.

He got to talking to four more people at gas stops: a cattleman from Round-up, Mont.; a nurse from Hayworth, Okla.; a landscape architect from Fort Collins; and a soon-to-be high school graduate from Montana.

What Marc is finding is that the news coverage people get is spotty and not very deep or contextualized. He also is enjoying just asking questions and filming responses without “getting into it with them.” He’s hearing from the high school student and on the radio the belief that as Christians, God gave the oil to us … it’s our earth … . I’m okay with spilling oil to get it.”

George Grieseman, the cattleman, said he follows the oil stories every day. Accidents, he said, are part of doing the business of energy drilling and mining. A price we have to pay. The 54-year-old Grieseman off-camera said that the drilling is too far offshore, as a way only to placate the people who don’t want the rigs close to shore.

Jeff Szymczak, 42, said the impact of the oil disaster makes him sad. “I wish there was something alternative we could develop to get off gas,” the landscape specialist said.

As Marc goes deeper into the heartland, and shifts south toward Mississippi, he’s realizing how different these ‘red’ states are in terms of politics and attitudes. He’s running into good people, the kind of people he would probably associate with in Spokane. More and more want to know about his trip, the film, the Down to Earth “Dispatches from a Disaster” site.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

May 13: Night of Wolves, Pelican Morning, Mist Rising

He hears wolves for the first time in the wild while camping near the Jefferson River outside Billings, Mont. He says the River is a symbol for his journey – the story of headwaters leaking into the big artery of life, the Mississippi which he is going to end up at after 2,500 miles of driving, interviewing and shooting the land.

It’s the Mississippi where oil might seep into and where Marc first wants to spend time, at its mouth, kayaking inlets and filming wildlife. It’s the Mississippi that is the sewer for 11 states and all those petrochemicals and toxins leeching from cities, mines, and farms.

He woke up the next day to frost, a lifting mist, and seven white pelicans mucking about wetlands while snow-capped mountains took over depth of field. Those pelicans became his talisman, Marc Gauthier said, as he knew he’d be meeting their cousins soon, the brownies, in the Gulf of Mexico, oil-globbed and dying.

“It was a good sign seeing those pelicans before I crossed the Continental Divide,” he said. Plus, the light was right and the footage he got was “sick,” the parlance of exceptional.

Marc was pumped up, full of emotional steam, and setting the standard for the course he was taking: Talk to people and get them on camera to answer three or four basic questions. Listen to the radio and see what is being said about the oil disaster. Take in the land and film scenery out the car window. Find a camp spot to rest up and organize his thoughts. Prepare for the next day.

So, what do you say to a husky, pony-tailed guy driving a cobalt blue 2010 Toyota Matrix with a smiley face yellow sea kayak strapped to the roof while he approaches you with a video camera and big, Spokane smile?

That is the question, and three very different people along the way ended up on film responding to the simple questions: Had you heard of the oil spill? How do you think it will affect or impact your life? Who’s responsible for the disaster?

He got three people on camera: Cody Haymen, of Wallace, Idaho, 20 years old and NIC metallurgy student. Jeff Cleveland, a 46-year-old sales rep from Coeur d’Alene. And, Beverly Dupree, a 38-year-old policy director for a Missoula-based non-profit.

Marc’s filmic ideas were gelling, he kept telling me. The journey, his, and the process of change he is experiencing, that’s one film. Then, the landscape rushing by at 65 mph, that’s another collage-montage fast cut and splice thing. The interviews of people along the way, another chapter to the big film. And then the lay of the land and the oil mess up close and personal, the Dispatches from a Disaster film incubating.

The NIC student told Marc he hadn’t heard about the spill and wouldn’t change much about his lifestyle because of it. The salesman had been watching the news and knew about the British Petroleum accident. He said he expects everyone will feel the effects with higher gas prices down the pike. “We have to make sure it never happens again,” Cleveland said. Beverly Dupree told Marc a lot, articulated that the environmental costs will be big, that this should be a wake-up call and teachable moment for everyone.

She cited the fact that the BP disaster could be the largest environmental accident in this country’s history. She’s been thinking about oil regularly now, as a resource. Dupree said it’s a timely accident and environmental disaster because the climate bill is being pushed in Congress. She thinks about every mile she now drives her car.

We all are in that spill – our hopes, dreams, way of life, and it might just be the beginning of the end of oil. Or, the other side to that resource coin: Drill, baby, drill more before it runs out.”

To keep up on a more regular basis, Dispatches from a Disaster, by Paul K. Haeder, as told by Marc Gauthier, dial in here:

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Conquering Oil

Note -- Writing this PacifiCAD sustainability blog has given me traction, and through that journey, getting to write on other blogs, for other newspapers and the like not only helps me grow, but this allows for Auto Desk and PacifiCAD to get more exposure. PacifiCAD's sustainability blog HAS gotten some attention. Below is the piece for Down to Earth Northwest, a product of two out-of-work journalists, Paul and Bart, but now a part of the Spokesman Review. I've got a sustainability column there largely because of my work here and in the community and as a writer. All of this bodes well for Auto Desk and PacifiCAD. I will post the finalized web page for this series, Dispatches from a Disaster, when it goes live in the next few hours or day (May 14). I am doing this adventure behind the desk, so to speak, one of the first times I've not been "on location" as a journalist writing while humping with a backpack full of photo gear and grub and science stuff. This adventure I am sharing with Marc Gauthier, maybe a little vicariously, and this Spokane businessman and former Michigan resident and graduate of Evergreen State College is currently on his way to the Gulf Coast from Spokane to make a film and change the world.

He left May 12. Dispatches from a Disaster will be posted here as well as the origination point -- Down to Earth Spokane.

Finding Odysseus in Spokane – One Man’s Journey South to Conquer Oil

By Paul K. Haeder

Introduction to:
Dispatches from a Disaster –
A Down to Earth Special Report on the Largest Oil Catastrophe in US History

Paul K. Haeder as told by March Gauthier

Wetlands – a delicate and profound balance of rain, riparian grace, wind, geology, plants, ice, sun, geochemistry and percolating soil. Home to myriads of birds, but recharger of moisture for areas much greater than the wetland ecosystem. Unfathomable ecosystems services these wonderful areas give humanity.

We’ve all but bulldozed our landlocked wetlands in this part of the world. Talk about shooting ourselves in the foot when it comes to flood control and water filtration.

For one Spokane resident, those wetlands of his Michigan and the Pacific Northwest will be embedded in his heart as he “goes south” (countervailing Horace Greely’s admonition to “go west, young man, go West and grow up with this country”) and tries to make sense of the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster that’s spewing 210,000 gallons a day from a twisted well head 5,000 feet under the sea.

The ocean, or water more specifically, is the magnetic force here for Marc Gauthier, Evergreen State College graduate in natural resources management and owner of the now shuttered Natural Start Bakery on Hamilton.

For Marc, his filmmaking talents will be the force that propels him to find out what really matters in this entire BP mess. He’s interested in the narrative hooks, the people, and the wildlife. He hopes to find himself in situations where one-on-one interviews produce for him the linchpin to the filmic narrative he hopes to thread from this three-week journey.

It’s all shoestring budgeting, and he’s set up a website,, and he’s taken donations of a cheap rental car from Avis, camping stuff from Mountain Gear, food and some money to make the trek down May 11, 2010. The 35-year-old bearded, pony-tailed filmmaker chuckles when he says he’s got all these skills to be put to use as one in the ranks of the newly unemployed. He was recently laid off from Main Market Co-op.

What he hopes to discover on this trek is the catalyst that he can say changed him and might change those who get to see his finished work when he comes back to edit and tweak his footage into some magical documentary that gets under the skin, under the sickening oil slick caused by a culture of profits over safety, promulgated through the covering up of environmental impacts, aided through the secreting away of studies showing the equipment and conditions too shaky for a legitimate and clean underwater oil exploration rig.

That’s a mouthful that speaks to a transformative documentarian in the style of Red Gold or Big River. Gauthier wants Spokane to make the connection of our oil dependency to the havoc wreaked upon the tidelands Teddy Roosevelt set aside almost a century ago because he loved the brown pelican so much and thought the labyrinthine glades and cypress swamps were totally unique to the US.

This journey, thanks to Marc’s vision and the donors, and his trusty sea kayak and video making equipment, will be catalogued on Down to Earth Northwest. We’re calling it Dispatches from a Disaster, but what I hope comes of these daily check-in calls and updates I’ll be penning with Marc’s expert perspectives will be the old style of journalism where you take a bit of risk and creative impetus by getting off your duff and putting your feet where your mouth is.

I’ve sold the farm, so to speak, several times in my life, heading to Central America in my late twenties; and then at Marc’s age, I headed to Viet Nam to put my money where my mouth was working on biodiversity surveys of forest and jungle along the Laotian border.

Bats high in the limestone mountains of my dad’s Viet Nam war, absolutely insane treks through cobra and viper populated jungle, and communes with gibbons and a riot of forest life change me, and helped to propel me as a wildlife photographer and journalist in my third or fourth iteration of life’s journey.

Marc’s part of that breed of people who feels the injustice and wants to translate that awakening into something meaningful, yet this journey is bound to surprise him and awaken some other spirit in him to get the job done as an environmentalist.

That’s why I hitched my regular DTE Column to his wagon/kayak, so to speak, and the benefits will be all Spokane’s as we can watch this journey unfold as he makes it, and then the film he conjures up on his return here will be posted on Down to Earth. He’ll be appearing all over the place to talk about this journey and creative child he gives birth to.

Marc and I have agreed to work this Dispatches from a Disaster this way, and while I’m his narrative sponge and translator, our intent is to get to the visceral, to be true as much as we can to the reality of Marc’s experiences through my writing. In that process, we’ll find out what the oil story is – oil that could end up in a million gallon a day hemorrhaging that will foul those tidelands and mess with the water column and the entire sea floor ecosystem for years to come. Maybe in that journey, Marc will be able to capture and make sense of this national and regional psychosis of fear when it comes to changing to a post-carbon society.

Through the various degrees of good and bad media, we as citizens will discover the impact of blatant disregard for safety measures by BP and the lack of oversight by the current interior department honcho, Ken Salazar, a recent Obama appointee who is working with eight years of George W. Bush’s drill, drill, drill policies.

While the eventual outcome of Marc’s endeavors might be to rally people in the Pacific Northwest to understand the heavy environmental, personal, economic and cultural toll the oil machine is unleashing, we still want that narrative – the stories of the shrimpers, the restaurateurs, the people sopping up the mess, the heartbeat of a floundering ecosystem few really understand.

Can we find the true measure of men and women in the grips of tragedy and economic holocaust? And those fellow bayou Americans so far from Spokane’s realities, are they truly from another planet? Do we have it in us to understand their one-two punch of Hurricane Katrina and now this?

As part of that journey, Marc will be kipping along the way, from Montana, down, through Arkansas and beyond, hoping to hire on with clean-up crews, and figuring out how to navigate the complex ecosystems of the tides to see what is really happening, surface level, and under the waves.

He’s entering a strange world, one so far away from Spokane, where he ended up after Evergreen State and after working on a 1,000 acre private ranch in Michigan, where he originally hails from. He spent summers on Lake Huron, doing all the things necessary to stimulate the mind and spirit to want to know more about the workings of ecology and those species that are remarkably cosmic and crazy.

Even with all the gardening and bakery-coffee shop work he and his partner-slash- significant other, Alyssa Krafft, did to get things going, Marc still found the time to continue filmmaking, with his Black River Productions. I’ve seen his 45-minute flick, Reviving the Sound, and that was done 2001 and shown all over the Sound area as he paddled to each little town he could to give free screenings. His most recent completed film is Controversy to Common Ground-The Colville National Forest Story, posted on the Down to Earth site, the first time the film has gained an Internet hold.

This oil disaster is emblematic and axiomatic of much that is wrong with the way do business in the USA, and how politics has turned into a game of stuffing pockets full of money, tainting common sense and logic.

Mary Landrieu of Louisiana is one of those examples of money buying off the Senators, as this member of our esteemed house has taken $252,950 in oil contributions during the 110th Congress. From 2000-2008, she’s one of the highest sell-outs in Congress to the oil companies to a tune of $574,000.

Marc’s film won’t get mired in that ugly economics’ worthy of a Dickens’ story, but he hopes to see bird life and turtles like leatherbacks, and he’ll be there with camera in hand, paddling away as the crud smothers a vast area the size of Texas with these pancake sized oil globules.

Winds, undercurrents, the layer of salt water mixing with brackish freshwater from lakes like Ponchartrain, Borgne, and Salvador, that’s what Marc will experience if he gets it right. Chandeleur Sound and Barataria Bay, that’s where he wants to spend time. And In Acadiana. It’s all a living Gaia, microcosmic in its creation and power, as the water breathes, and the prairies and swamps turn into the conveyor belts of sea life, migratory birds and humans meting out livings.

Shrimp. It’s the symbol of the tidelands of this Gulf coast, and their deep water larva lives are spent in deep waters, the pelagic zone that is far from shores but not on the ocean bottom. Currents move them and they feed off suspended bio-matter, or anything. They grow plump quickly.

Now they enter the food web, the protein source for all swimming things around them. So, the hundreds of trillions that are hatched now are reduced to a few trillion. They then advance toward the shore through this action of flood tides. Northerly winds push them to these wetlands, or marshes.

Now they are teens, juveniles. They grow and grow in this feeding zone, along the coast, into the brackish waters of the tidelands. They live in the Spartina grass. They go at it for food in the bayous.

The ocean delivers them the geochemical signals to make the final push of their lives as adult shrimp returned back to the open ocean. That next to last stage, in the benthic zone of a few hundred feet down, is when they get that final growth spurt, putting on the weight. When the water warms, they do the quickening – rising up, spawning, charging the surface with trillion of eggs.

Marc’s going to be in that surreal magic realism, and the work of finding how those natural gas, oil and petrochemical industries have worked the past 100 years to do the damage of the tidelands will be the undertow to the story. People have made their livings off of shipping, manufacturing, hard work and hydrocarbon processing, as well as the wonky stuff tied to this industry which over time has become the quintessential character wanton of greed and more oil capture in the movie, “There Will Be Blood.” It’s an industry that has plagued not only this neck of the woods, but in countless countries, from Iraq to Nigeria.

Marc probably will have very little need to mess with that history while he’s down with the bayou.

We’ve messed up the entire sedimentation process of those wetlands by channeling through it. We’ve locked the Mississippi and other waterways in concrete and rammed earthy dams and canals. Oaks and cypress have been killed, and so has the prairie grass. By 2002, the Gulf was seeing each year more than 24 square miles of land lost to the waves that are now coming at it because of all the barrier islands leveled and the entire swamp system surgically cut to shreds.

Marc will be our guide, our eyes and ears. We’ll want to know what the dispersants are doing to ecosystems yet to be fully studied. We want to know what the BP “suits” are doing to stymie political and citizen action.

We want to see the men, women and children of the Gulf Coast deal with this disaster. We want their stories – the kind that push every human being to make the connections to this life and their lifestyles to the disharmony of our world as we gobble up more mountains and more coast for the triplet monsters of coal, oil and natural gas.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Disgrace of Disaster -- Politics and Corporate Governance As Usual

Yeah, so much to say about British Petroleum, Halliburton, the blatant pay-offs to these oil companies. This is a reckoning of sorts, tied to the lack of environmental impact studies, BP not wanting to spend $500,000 for an acoustic regulator that might have stemmed the flow from that Deepwater Horizon disaster. Eleven men killed in the methane bubble explosion. Drilling 20,000 feet down into the earth's crust in 5,000 feet of water. We've sold off our children's and their grandchildren's futures: solar, wind, conservation, efficiency, co-generation, and other forms of fueling our world should have been on the table 20 years ago, two years ago when Obama took office.

We'll pay the bill. And the 12 to 20 billion dollars in lost economic vitality, and the priceless loss of wetlands and tidelands and the ecosystems? We'll just have to witness BP negotiating a pittance of responsibility, monetary and spiritual and intellectual as we can all see it has complete complicity in this huge oil disaster.

It's spewing 210, 000 gallons a day as of today, May 8, and those ecosystems, the coastal people, the entire legacy of Teddy Roosevelt designating that area, those barrier islands, the entire tidelands, his favorite brown pelican, turtles, all those ecosystem vital to American memory and America's wild history and future, well, we "get it" in the environmental movement: we allowed the oil companies to run roughshod over our country's national heritage of citizen participation, collective comment and the vitality of science and others outside of the corporate structure, those we deem experts, or even the theoretical politician, who are suppose to be working for us, for the land trust of America's shores, reefs, forests, prairies, deserts.

This blog post is just the tip of the iceberg. The calamity of our country's offshore drilling madness and the retrograde thinking when it comes to a true Apollo Program for green infrastructure, green jobs, alternative energy, and sustainability, well, I have many, many words to pen on that, all tied to this lunacy of BP allowing to wreck our environment, our economy, our national pride.

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