Monday, July 12, 2010

Snake oil

A cap has apparently been lowered on the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, and BP says that there are tests that need to be done to determine its effectiveness.

Meanwhile, one of the aspects of this story that is most infuriating is the collaboration between the oil giant and the US government to restrict the media's access to areas on the land and sea affected by the spill. CNN's Anderson Cooper was justifiably angry about the policy announced on July 1 that could result in fines or prison time for anyone who comes within 65 feet of a boom or vessel working on the spill.

Despite the "safety and security" rationale, this is clearly an attempt to limit images and stories that would shed more bad light on BP. Putting a corporation's interest above the right of the American people to get information is unconscionable and clearly violates the First Amendment.

The image above is an Associated Press photo of a dead turtle in a pool of oil. I found it at a blog that has collected some images of the devastation caused by the leak -- images that are generally being kept from Americans.

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