Friday, December 09, 2011

Don't be evil

The US military is the largest polluter on Earth, so large that they can't seem to pay to clean up their own messes, even when they get as much money every year as all other militaries of the world combined. It is pathetic that they can just contaminate wherever they go and offload the cleanup onto others.

Most recently, Google stepped in and offered to pay the cleanup and decontamination costs for the Navy at Moffett Field Hangar One, where the old siding was classified as toxic. Google gets a lease on the historic, 200-feet-tall building, so they bargained a save for the poor beleagured Navy and got some hangar room for their executive aircraft in the bargain. The irony of a nonmilitary corporation bailing out the richest military in world history is itself rich.

Where else can this sort of thing happen? Can Bill Gates fix Hanford, Washington, where US atomic pollution has been contaminating the Columbia river since the mid-1940s? Perhaps another Seattle nonmilitary corporation, Amazon, can help turn the Puget Sound Trident base back to its Douglas Fir, Cedar and Hemlock rainforest pristine state if we ever grow a national conscience and dismantle the Trident fleet.

Those who propose redirecting military spending to other areas frequently meet a "what about the military jobs?" challenge. If even a relatively small portion of the $1 trillion annual military spending were to go to bioremediation and other cleanup work as needed, that would employ more people than all the armed services and their capital-intensive contractors combined. This is vitally needed work and it's drastically underfunded, even as we contemplate war on Iran, more massive military budgets for our belligerence, and a continuation of nosedive into debt. The rationale behind so much of this toxicity is so immoral, so evil. Save money, save the Earth, save jobs and create even more. This is a serious change but we have serious problems. Marginal moves will not work. Thanks, Google, now help us repurpose the American economy toward peace and ecological sanity.


Joe-Anybody said...

Thanks for putting this into context and giving it some "light of day"
~joe anybody

Tom H. Hastings said...

I try, Mike Check, but you are still the Light-of-DayMeister.

Ty Olson said...

Yeah. Thanks, Tom. The Google piece is particularly interesting...

Ty Olson said...

Yeah. Thanks, Tom. The Google piece is particularly interesting. (I'm most definitely interested in learning more about this.)
Ciao, friend!