We just got home from four more days in Point-Aux-Chenes again, after tagging along for various things. This video below is one of them. Which is huge f-in news for the Little People, the hoi polloi, the regular folk who don’t know their voice is so much stronger than the corporation which is currently telling everybody what to do while they (fail to) clean up the mess they made in our back yards.
The corporation with shills in the government is launching smear campaigns against tiny little non-profits with six employees, and spreading misinformation about the quality of handmade American products vs. the boom they are currently “distributing” in the marsh.
I am so heated about all this that I’m forgoing a special date with a special Army man I’d like to thank for serving our country but will have to thank later. Of course, it’s only the fate of the marsh that’s at stake. And all the animals in it. And the people who live around it and in it and OFF OF IT.
And this watery state of the Union which already has been crapped on enough. And the fate of the oceans. And the planet. And BP is performing an absurdity akin to the apocalyptic version of “cleaning your room” by cramming everything sky-high in the closet, so when Mom opens the door to look at it, something falls on her and kills her.
Make jokes about Louisiana being “America’s asshole” all you want. We are America’s liver.
We take all the poison that drains from the body of Americans and their/our waste and fertilizer and excessive habits of consumption and littering, and we — the landscape where we live — turns it into gold. Black gold. Texas tea. And shrimp, oysters, crawfish, sheepshead, black drum, redfish, deer, ducks, geese, pelicans, and on and on, the animals that call it home are myriad.
Louisiana’s main export besides killer seafood and killer music is oil. Louisiana is a friend to oil. Thirty thousand wellheads or so.
What if the area was cleared out completely so the companies could plant as many oil wells as they wanted? America is in dire straits, as far as getting more of the black crack is concerned.
It was explained to us over the weekend in beautiful Bourg, Louisiana that Saudi oil companies are private and therefore don’t have to cater to the whims of their shareholders — they can set the prices wherever they want. But American oil companies cook the books to please their stockholders — falsely keeping prices low to show a good profit on paper.
This system WILL collapse, and we will all be Saudi Arabia’s bitches. Meanwhile, multinational conglomerate monsters who step on the necks of regular people everywhere are still scrambling to profit off our addiction to oil, like a pusherman in a New Jack City full of junkies.
Who can blame them? We can’t. We only have ourselves to blame, and the systematic, violent suppression of sensible, ubiquitous alternative energy sources like fry-oil Biodiesel.
The greed of monopolistic energy companies has brought us to this. Today we went out on the boat again, well a different boat this time. Different awesome enchanting Cajuns. Yesterday we saw a sheen on the water they said wasn’t normally there — the motor-oil rainbow, vaguely, with specks of dead plankton and flakes of whatever it is tiny fishies eat, but dead.
No visible oil had collected in the marshes where we boated yesterday, or on the grass, rather. We only (“only”) saw the deadly sheen, and a couple big ominous 2-foot-around blobs of reddish-brown death-hue in the gray-green brackish water.
Today the motorboat we hitched a ride on turned to the left instead of the right at that one place — and there it was: Discolored marsh grass sitting in the water like a brown-to-green fade, shortened and flattened and wilting … chocolate-seeped stalks of the only natural barrier-shield which provides southern Louisiana with hurricane protection these days, since coastal erosion wore away and salted out the ancient oak forest and fertile grassland where the marsh now is.
The same wild horses which help make Point-Aux-Chenes so magical grazed there by the water again today but on the other side. They had swum over the channel to come check out the talented out-of-towner arty kids filming a way-above-hipster-level movie which we can’t talk about because they don’t want to give away the secret but it’s going to be magical.
The wild horses were still just looking at us fearlessly, being all ferociously majestic, and not afraid of people in the slightest, and eating next to the water. Eating the marsh grass which will soon, maybe tomorrow, start to turn chocolate at the bottom.
Jeff LaBoeuf didn’t evacuate when The Storm hit. His parents owned a big brick house he took over when they moved to Florida, and he knew the marsh never floods the way the city did (storm surge, maybe), and he ventured out in 100mph winds to tear something off his neighbor’s shed when ANOTHER shed rolled by and almost killed him.
After The Storm passed, the generator kicked on, and the 30% or so of his neighbors who didn’t evacuate came over, and they all partied and grilled the meat before it went bad and pumped water from a neighbor’s swimming pool and generally had a good time. They know how to do that shit.
Another thing Cajuns and the Native Americans know is how to take care of their land. Jeff came up with the idea of loading boom into a shrimper’s net and trawling open water, like an OIL ZAMBONI. Genius, right? We’ve got lots of ideas. We’re willing to work WITH BP, even though we’re pissed at them, and we promise to play nice.
We’re all trying to figure out how to facilitate a process whereby the people who live in the marsh can clean up their own marsh when they want to, effectively, using hair and pantyhose and hay and miracle dust from Nevada. But nobody knows where to put the oily boom once it’s contaminated, because BP locked down all the dumpsters in the area, and the government and Bayou Polluters will not pony up the money to get the 68 railcars of the miracle dust down here to start distributing it.
The land has been eroding, faster and faster, ever since big oil started moving in. Southern Louisiana is formed, and continues to be reborn or not, from the silt from the Mississippi River, which has been dammed up and jammed up from Minnesota and on down.
The oil men and the Army Corps of Engineers both dug straight canals, too many of them, through the Louisiana marsh to make avenues for “progress,” which pulled in brackish water from the ocean, which killed the freshwater stuff. Nutria, a foreign species of rodent released in the marsh after some furriers gave up on the business, proliferated like an orange-toothed virus and ate the coastline away.
All these things have been causing Louisiana itself to disappear — and allowing for stronger hurricanes. We could still come back from this current state, by rebuilding the barrier islands and backfilling this and that. We could do it. If Obama nixed Corexit, thumbs-upped Toxy Trap, and started a WPA-type project to employ all the fishermen whose livelihoods BP knocked out, the barrier islands would be rebuilt and ready to fish again in a few years.
We’ve noticed a lot of people who should be more worried than they are, seem not to be because they’re already almost broken from Katrina and it’s some sort of defense mechanism they possess to keep them from completely going insane. It’s not that they aren’t worried … they’re creepily accepting of the coming doom, and they feel unable to change it. THAT IS WHAT WE NEED TO CHANGE.
Southern Louisiana is made up of some of the best people on Earth, and they are already exhausted. They are Tinkerbell, and it is time for us to CLAP OUR HANDS AS HARD AS WE CAN. Send them love, money, hair, pantyhose, crab traps, chicken wire, barges, dredgers, sandbags, burlap, batteries, generators, rotary-kiln incinerators, solar panels, hand-crank radios, ammunition, cigarettes, and naked pictures of yourself. Just pick someone and send them something.
HELP. Oil in the marsh. Oil in the water. SOS. We saw it with our own eyes today. It is real. Seagulls catching fish in the oily marsh with dolphins playing in front of the brown slick crude-soaked grass.
Write your congresspeople, fill out this form, and ask them to MAKE the Obama administration MAKE Bayou Polluters “LET” US (god that infuriates me) use the hair boom, 20 warehouses full, all around the Gulf, ready to be deployed by eager and willing Cajuns in the marshes BP doesn’t care about saving.
And to replace Corexit with proven oil-eating microbes. RIGHT NOW; not after tests and reports and figuring out how to make a buck off of it. WE DO NOT HAVE TIME TO FUCK AROUND. Everything in Southern Louisiana will soon be dead. And BP does NOT CARE.
Question: Is this America? Are we really letting corporations who shit all over everything we’ve ever loved and then tried to hide it TELL US WHAT TO DO? Tell us how to best clean up the marsh?
Stymie our efforts, launch smear campaigns against lil’ ol’ Matter of Trust, and dishearten every single person in the world who, in the past month, has sheared their llamas and alpacas, mailed in some hair, shaved their head, cheer-led their whole salon in a boom-drive, or washed their old pantyhose and put them in a box with a stranger’s address on it?
That’s a lot of people. If you are one of those people and you are reading this, please do yourself and your economy and your karma a favor and ring the alarm for everyone you know to hear. It is time. They are APPEASING US with empty mainstream media stories and photo-op cleanup opportunities, all while refusing actual help. When will the American public finally get mad enough at them for taking us to be idiots?
Maybe we are. Since the below video came out, we’ve seen other news reports where the newscaster says the word “workers” and they show some form of this clip of the red-white-and-blue extras hired by BP PR for Team Obama Picture Day.
Why don’t the American people know and have access to everything that everyone in the government knows? Don’t they want to work with us, and learn the lessons, and enforce them? If they’ve got nothing to hide, then why do they hide things? Don’t they work for us? Don’t we pay their salaries? It’s the 21st century.
Oh yes — we know why. Because if the congresspeople started ratting on BP and all their shadiness, BP would pull out their Satanic Ledger of Backroom Deals and play tit-for-tat with the crooked or otherwise somehow implicable and blood-money-accepting politicians who are currently DOING PRETTY MUCH NOTHING about the fact that America’s liver is failing.
America, you need your liver. Without it, you die.
Sorry to be a bummer; return to your regularly scheduled program of complaining to your friends on Facebook without taking any action and then forgetting about it. We’re sure Grandpa Joe Cajun won’t mind relocating and/or starving to death!
Gah. Sorry. Guilt gets us nowhere. Let’s not put off anyone who might otherwise help. Of course, you won’t really do anything, will you, until it affects you directly? We wouldn’t, either. We’re all lazy entitled Americans most of the time. Even most people we know in New Orleans are sticking with the ostrich route for now.
Well, the Indians and Cajuns we talked to today are ready to do some serious shit that has not been seen since our founding forefathers and foremothers told England to GO FUCK THEMSELVES. Some of them paid with their lives. This is the kind of rhetoric that is being tossed around in the marshes we just came from.
This is undprecedented and scary. This is the kind of stuff you have to say to yourself right before you decide to stay and fight, even though you know you may die.
Please, please, please do something, Please? Please. DO SOMETHING.
from (the brackish waterworld wasteland soon to be formerly known as) New Orleans
Follow Summer Burkes on Twitter.