Tuesday, 20 August 2013
BLACK SHEEP MAG HOOF: FRACKING/ 'LORD' JOHN BROWNE
Ewen Ramsbottom goes in! This taken from Black Sheep Magazine.
Anyone noticed how Insane is the new Normal? We live in a world where civilians get limbs blown off from remote-controlled drone bombs to 'protect them'. Where the industrial poison sodium fluoride is added to drinking water, toothpaste and mouthwash because it's 'good for teeth', and where thousands of trails of toxic chemical cocktails containing assorted carcinogens are sprayed into the skies daily from aircraft to 'help combat global warming' (which is a manufactured lie anyway.) If this world were truly sane, and the above were outlined as the plot to some ambitious Hollywood movie, the script would be thrown out on the basis of it being a bit far-fetched. Yet this is our daily reality. And as the late, great US comedian George Carlin once observed, 'nobody seems to care, nobody seems to notice.
This month, a new insanity has been making British headlines. (It's been in the alternative media for ages, of course, but the mainstream hacks have only just caught up with it, bless 'em.) The blockade at the village of Balcombe in West Sussex against energy giant Cuadrilla and their plans to roll out a UK-wide system of hydraulic fracturing, or 'fracking', has brought this most lunatic of procedures into the public domain.
Even the official version of what's involved must surely sound an alarm bell or two, (and it's worth reflecting on why France's Francois Hollande has outlined the process in France for the entirety of his presidency on grounds of public health and safety.)
Fracking mines drill deep into the earth's geology, creating a shaft down which millions of gallons of fresh water, laced with sand and a cocktail of chemicals (the nature of which the fracking industry has not been called on to reveal,) are flushed at extremely high pressure. This causes the rocks deep beneath the surface to fracture and unleash deposits of shale gas and methane.
The idea is that the gases escape through the shaft. But with the ground shattered to pieces, inevitably much of it will seep up through the rock, escaping to the surface, and contaminating the groundwater supply in the process. What do you think happens to most of the water after the job, by the way? The fracking industry by its own admission considers a recovery of as little as 60 per cent of the water to be a success. The rest of it, (bearing in mind it's laced with undisclosed chemicals, don't forget), disappears into the earth's geology. Even the mainstream rags have been paying lip service to some of the many environmental and health and safety risks involved.
The procedure is well-established in the US and Australia, among other regions, and films such as Josh Fox's 'Gasland' have documented the many risks involved. There's footage of landowners being able to ignite water from standing pipes on fracked land with a match. There have been earthquakes following fracking operations. There's a well-documented incident where the pressure build-up caused one mine to blow up, sending a crane flying into a nearby truck. That's before you consider the logistical and environmental impact of transporting millions of gallons of filtered water (because only fresh water works, apparently) to the fracking sites, at a time when hosepipe bans are still in place in many parts of the UK and water suppliers constantly urge us to 'use water sparingly'.
(Funny how these resources can always be found from somewhere when there are colossal million-dollar government contracts up for grabs, isn't it? It reminds me of how, in the midst of the harshest 'austerity' measures and cuts in government benefits to the poor in a generation, somehow the nation's coffers can still stretch to the billions of pounds it spends each year on warfare and weaponry to aid its continued colonisation of resource-rich countries, located comfortably enough away from Britain for most people not to spend any time worrying about. But I digress.)
Despite all this, however, the blockade at Balcombe by a wonderful bunch of folks with a collective conscience, shows the real power the people have when they come together united in a cause, as Cuadrilla has been forced to cease its operations in that location, and the police have been evidently frustrated by the forceful, yet peaceful nature of the gathering. They know how to crack heads together, but they seem a bit stumped on how to handle peaceful, intelligent, well-informed protest.
The rest of the UK would do well to follow Balcombe's example, too, because some 64 per cent of the UK mainland has been identified as lying over shale gas deposits, making all these areas rich pickings for the greedy, immoral fracking industry. And even if the above insanities don't frighten the nation into paying some much-needed attention, the effect that a nearby fracking mine has been shown to have on property prices should. In the Blackpool area of the North West, a UK fracturing hotspot, homeowners have discovered their properties have bombed in value virtually overnight. Hardly surprising, either.
And so - at last - we move on to the ultimate subject of this Hoof. It strikes me that in the case of any insanity such as this, some individual must bear some personal responsibility. Step forward the excitingly-named 'Lord' (the Establishment's choice of wording, not mine) John Browne, CEO of Cuadrilla, Ex BP chief, (you know, that nice company that poisoned the Mexican Gulf) and extremely influential government peer. Browne stands a shining example of a greedy, immoral, self-serving sociopath, who values his own salary, pension plan, mansions and yachts above the well-being of a nation. Who has zero concern for the health risks his company poses to regular, everyday people, especially children, (apart from his own, presumably.) And who has zero regard for preserving the earth, on which all humanity depends for continued survival. A government contract worth millions is worth more than all of that.
This man needs to bear the responsibility for facilitating Cuadrilla's role in this, (as do the heads of the other global frackers, because there are many of them at it.) If he had an ounce of integrity, human compassion or conscience, he would not be heading up such a monstrous operation. So, Browne can take everything that's coming to him for this. He's made his choice.
(Don't think for one minute that pathetic, spineless yes-man Cameron gets excused from any of this, by the way, with his outright lies about fracking being 'absolutely safe' just because his own pockets have been lined to say so. We'll deal with that sickening, cowardly traitor another time!)
The official line has it that fracking is absolutely necessary to secure the ongoing fuel supplies that the nation is going to need moving forward. But this wouldn't be the case had governments invested in the technology proposed by the genius Serbian scientist Nikola Tesla, who early last century pioneered the use of 'free energy' - tapping into the naturally-occurring abundant supply of universal energy from which all things are comprised, and harnessing it, at zero cost, as an infinite energy source. Although Tesla tried to take this concept to the US government with the benefit of humanity in mind, the psychopathic Establishment of course just conned him out of the patent, and shelved it, never intending to develop it when other money-spinning, resource-depleting, earth-destroying methods could be used.
Browne surely knows about this. As do his accomplices in this outrage. And these are the people we trust to run our nation's infrastructure.
'Lord' John Browne. My job, my money, my career, eh John? What else could matter?