Yes, Obama Is 'Engaged' - in a Colossal Crime

In a rational polity, the
great abomination to Earth and Man in the Gulf would spell the end of
the Obama presidency. We are witnessing cataclysm on a geological scale,
an event with the potential to alter planetary destiny, precipitated
not by the three hundred million year arc of wayward comets or the
incremental slide of continent-molding tectonic plates, but by the
routine exercise of corporate power in the United States.

The man in charge of the
government that both permitted and abetted the heinous corporate crime
("Drill, baby, drill!") should, by all rights, be in terminal disgrace.
Instead, much of Obama's "base" behaves as if the First Black President
is an innocent party -- a victim of circumstances -- rather than a
facilitator of the corporate enterprise that has spawned the Mother of
all Pollutions.But then, Teflon is a petrochemical product.

Any meaningful discussion
of the oceanic version of Chernobyl would challenge a political system
in which huge corporations are empowered to seek profits with absolutely
no regard for the consequences to Earth or Man. Viewed from that angle --
the only sane perspective -- questions of whether Obama is fully or only
partially "engaged" are ludicrously ill-framed. Engaged in what, in
subduing and caging the corporate animals that are defecating in
humanity's only nest? Clearly not: BP is the operative government in the
Gulf, with the Coast Guard as its muscle. BP is also the surgeon in
charge of mending the Earth's wound and preventing the spread of
septicemia in its life-sustaining fluids - the equivalent of Jack The
Ripper tending to his own victims. Under such circumstances, the more
Obama assures us he is "engaged," the greater his confessed complicity
in the crime.

For purposes of assigning
culpability, Obama was fully engaged in setting the stage for the
atrocity from the moment of his campaign reversal on off-shore drilling in August, 2008 -- after he had the nomination locked
up. "My interest is in making sure we've got the kind of comprehensive
energy policy that can bring down gas prices," said candidate Obama.
"If, in order to get that passed, we have to compromise in terms of a
careful, well-thought-out drilling strategy that was carefully
circumscribed to avoid significant environmental damage -- I don't want
to be so rigid that we can't get something done." So Obama bent over
like a contortionist to pleasure the oil barons.

The full scope of Obama's
"compromise" was announced almost two years later, on March 31. The White House gave Big Oil
virtually everything it wanted that was politically possible, with no
protections for the public or Mother Earth in the form of a
"well-thought-out drilling strategy that was carefully circumscribed to
avoid significant environmental damage."

"The federal government
is fully engaged and I am fully engaged," said Obama, last week. OK, we'll accept that he has
been engaged in furthering the oil industry's plans to drill at depths
at which current technology makes mistakes irreparable -- as the damage
from the current ecological holocaust is already irreparable.

Obama has been engaged in
killing the planet, in concert with his corporate co-conspirators. He
did nothing more than cosmetic changes at the federal Minerals
Management Service, which Obama finally admitted, at last week's press
conference, "had been plagued by corruption for years" and had a
"scandalously close relationship" with Big Oil.

The unbroken chain of
"corruption" at the agency in both Bush and Obama administrations is one
small expression of the continuity of actual rule of the country by
sometimes feuding cousins in Big Oil and Wall Street and the Military
Industrial Complex -- the permanent government. Obama is "engaged" as
their servant, like his predecessors in the Oval Office.

The corporate cousins
have raised the stakes of the game. It's either them or Earth itself.
When history passes its verdict on the current era, she will not assign
much import to the advent of the First Black President of the United
States. Rather, history will mark 2010 as the year a servile political
operative in the White House exposed the seabed to deep defilement by the
oil colossus, from which the world never fully recovered.

Join Us: News for people demanding a better world

Common Dreams is powered by optimists who believe in the power of informed and engaged citizens to ignite and enact change to make the world a better place.

We're hundreds of thousands strong, but every single supporter makes the difference.

Your contribution supports this bold media model—free, independent, and dedicated to reporting the facts every day. Stand with us in the fight for economic equality, social justice, human rights, and a more sustainable future. As a people-powered nonprofit news outlet, we cover the issues the corporate media never will. Join with us today!