I wrote the following in an email message to colleagues from other parts of the country who graciously offered sympathetic

Ugliness from outer space (Photo: Getty Images)

condolences to me on the condition of our disaster that continues to fester in the Gulf of Mexico as we nervously wonder what’s going to happen and when, how bad it’s going to be, etc etc.  Proverbially, we’re hoping for the best, preparing for the worst.  So far, we’ve dodged the worst (or it’s dodged us?).  But no one takes consolation as the sickening sheen meanders in sloooooooooooow, amoeba-like movements just off-shore, feigning one way now and another way later–keeping everyone off balance from Louisiana to Mississippi to Alabama to Florida.  I realized the email message was worth posting after one of my colleagues thanked me for the way I expressed the update to her and my other friends.  So I read what I wrote and liked it enough: Here ’tis!

Thanks [to my friends] for your thoughts about the environmental disaster that’s in progress down here.  One of the dead in the rig explosion was from our close-knit small town of Eunice, so our community has a personal share.  Now, of course, the disaster has become America’s disaster.  I heard one commentator over the weekend put this incident alongside [the] recent [West Virginia] mining disaster, essentially raising the question “Haven’t we had enough?”

We’re so addicted to the hydrocarbon teat that we can’t stop  guzzling its poison, even though we freely admit it’s killing us.  Maybe this current incident will turn into one of those galvanizing moments in history—I can’t imagine the other big oil companies watching what BP’s going through without realizing this mess could just have easily been theirs, because no matter how bad BP’s environmental record, what happened on that rig could have happened on any operator’s rig.  The ridiculous irony is that all this blame-deflecting BP is throwing out is kind of justified (i.e., the contracted rig operator’s equipment truly is what failed).

Yep, this “accident” could have happened to any operator in a deep water drilling operation.

(Not that I harbor no gracious thoughts for BP, by the way—Like we say in Cajun, they’re canaille!  But not significantly more or less canaille than the others.)

Oh, the meaning of canaille?  How about sneaky? Better yet, “Slippery?”  Good synonyms.

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