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The Short Term Versus The Long Term

Gulf Gusher symbolThe gamblers working the Wall Street casinos have no connection to real life. It doesn’t occur to them that you can’t eat money, and if any of a number of things go wrong, you may not be able to buy food.

During Katrina the people in a high class hotel for a conference found out that their credit cards were just slices of plastic when the electricity and communications are out. If they wanted food and water, they had better be prepared to “loot”.

Over at the Left Coaster Mary found a comment by an investment banker, Weighing Oil vs The Environment. The banker thought the oil was much more important than the health of the Gulf because it was generating billions, while the fishing industry only generated about three-quarters of a billion dollars per year.

According to this banker, if the oil covers my beaches all we have to do is scoop up the oily sand and put new sand in its place. There is no problem.

Mississippi will be fine because people go to their shore for the casinos and the odor is the only problem he can see for them.

He concludes that it is obvious that oil is more important than the environment.

I don’t guess he’s aware that oil is a finite commodity, and it will be gone at some point, while fishing has been going on in the Gulf for tens of thousands of years. It is a long term activity.

Working on the rigs is short term. It is not a matter of getting hired and staying on the rig for years. It revolves around making a connection with a labor contractor, essentially a temp agency, and going where you are sent if there is work, or sitting on shore waiting for work. It isn’t steady or guaranteed, and the money is only good when you can get work. The work is for young people, maybe two decades, and you need something to do when you stop getting called.

In any case, the big money goes to the corporations, and they aren’t local to the Gulf Coast, so the money doesn’t build anything for the people down here.

As for our sand, there’s a couple of problems. What do you do with the contaminated sand, and where do you get the new sand.

Our sugar white beaches are quartz sand that eroded off the mountains to the North. The Gulf is the source of the sand, the finishing touch. We replenish eroded beaches by dredging, but the oil will contaminate the bottom of the Gulf as well as the beaches. In addition, the beaches need the sea oats and other vegetation to hold the sand and build the dunes that protect the mainland from storm surge.

That is also the purpose of the wetlands in Louisiana which have been hit by oil. This oil is destroying the best natural defenses the Northern Gulf has against storm surge.

You can’t eat money or oil, but we used to be able to eat the seafood from the Gulf. You don’t need a lot of money to live well if you can provide your own food. The banker doesn’t even mention all of the people who will be out of work and out of hope after what BP has done to the Gulf. He doesn’t know or care about them. His sole concern is the return on his bets, and hasn’t bet on fishing, that’s a long term investment, and Wall Street doesn’t do that any more.

5 comments

1 Kryten42 { 06.01.10 at 8:54 am }

What do you do with the contaminated sand, and where do you get the new sand.

That’s easy. Send it all to the retarded Banker and his retarded friends at their expense and say “If it’s so easy, here it is.” Send him all the dead fish and other wildlife also.

Just goes to prove, even though many of the wealthy are imbeciles and ignoramuses, the sheeple they con are even dumber.

2 Bryan { 06.01.10 at 3:20 pm }

I have always reacted badly to people who think that money can buy you anything because they have never been in the real world where you may find that no one will sell you what you need, because they don’t need money.

It’s also annoying that people can’t understand that oil is both finite and a consumable. It has no resale value because you burn it.

3 LadyMin { 06.01.10 at 3:21 pm }

Corporations will kill the entire planet if we let them.

Only after the last tree has been cut down,
Only after the last river has been poisoned,
Only after the last fish has been caught,
Only then will you find that money cannot be eaten.
~ Cree Indian Prophecy
.-= last blog ..Bunny Rabbit And I Are No Longer Friends =-.

4 Bryan { 06.01.10 at 3:26 pm }

This is the land of the Cree and Cherokee.

5 Kryten42 { 06.02.10 at 4:11 am }

I found this to be a useful legal summation. Will be interesting to see if it plays out…

The BP Blowout: Legal Claims and Questions

I find it highly ironic that the article is by a Israeli Law Professor at this time! 😉