Monday, July 5, 2010

Transparency just Vanished

What would yield a $40,000 fine
and a Class D Felony charge?

Under threat of a federal felony, National Incident Commander Thad Allen HAS BANNED ALL MEDIA ACCESS to boom operation sites and clean up sites. Allen's orders effectively bans all media - print, television, radio and Internet bloggers from talking to to any clean-up worker or to even come close to take pictures or videos of booms, clean-up workers, oil soaked birds, dead dolphins, dead marine life, burned and dead endangered sea turtles.
Allen has issued a blanket order that bans anyone from getting close to any spill clean up site, boom site, areas where there are clean up workers or any other oil disaster related area or persons effectively shutting down the first amendment rights of the media. The zone of no trespass & exclusion is 65 feet.  ~ Story via Michael Moore's website. 

Right here in the land of the free, with the free press. I expect this to be challenged in court. 
Ya know.... the Bill of Rights.... 1st Amendment to the Constitution & all that. 
The bottom line for me, is why are the Coast Guard & BP spending any time at all jacking around with media blackouts? Don't they have more pressing & important issues to address? Did they really think this country was going to roll over & allow this to happen? Just the worst environmental disaster in the history of our country & now taking a photo is a Felony?
FYI if you are convicted of a Felony you lose rights. 
 The lifetime exclusion of felons from jury service
• The right to possess a firearm
• The right to hold public office or vote
• Eligibility to earn a living & practice a profession may be restricted

Making photo taking re the oil spill, a Felony Crime is a big deal. This should not be happening with a President who is a Constitutional Scholar. This is a slippery slope with a lot at stake- a horrible precedent to set. No entity should have the ability to disallow freedom of speech & a free press. 
We need a free press that can report the truth, and taking photos is a part of the way to tell the story. Besides the fact we were promised transparency-- by both BP & the Coast Guard, it is our Constitutional right.

For the record, I don't consider myself to be a pessimist, I consider myself a realist. If we don't demand our Constitutional Rights be upheld, then I guess we deserve whatever we get. The notion we would agree to stand down & let BP run the EPA & the Coast Guard under these circumstances, while imposing a felony charge for taking photos of this historic catastrophe, is absurd. 

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for 
a redress of grievances

What is it they don't want us to see?

$4 million dollar boom failed

The effects on wildlife?

Boom on Marshes not so good

At least NASA photos from space adhere to the 65 foot ban. Oil appears as white in the photo. 


Life As I Know It Now said...

Outrage after outrage! This is something we could expect of BUSH not OBAMA. WTF?!?!

Unknown said...

Fran, the only thing I watch on the Gusher in the Gulf lately is Maddow's stories. I seriously get PTSD over this shit as I personally witnessed the carnage in Santa Barbara in 69. I will never get the pictures of animals covered in oil dying before my eyes...I am serious as a heart attaack. Dolphin, seals, all was horrific m'dear friend.

I could personally bludgeon any of the BP assholes that cut corners on the bulding of this rig. I kid you not...I would plead insanity...and I would be...insane.

Fran said...

Lib~ I am livid. This is a crime on top of a crime-- and you are right- so very Bushesque.

Dusty~ Can't blame you & Maddow is doing an excellent job covering it. Everything from the EPA & Coast Guard being in cahoots w BP, to the Judge who has a Big Oil portfolio, shooting down the 6 month moratorium-- and now this?
All of this is about as mishandled as it can possibly be.
It the regulatory agencies have no teeth, then BP runs roughshod-- which is what they are doing. I've not read one expert in the field who thinks the chemical dispersant being released @ the broken wellhead underwater is a good idea. Not one. But I have heard a lot who say it is a bad idea.

I read last night tar balls are landing on Texas beaches-- so now every state on the Gulf Coast has been effected.

Houston..... we have a problem!

But this move -- which specifically includes Bloggers also being prohibited really crosses the line.

Christopher said...


Can you email me at your convenience?

I have a few questions I want to run past you regarding the pros and cons of living in Portland.

Jim got a recruitment notice from the OSU Medical Center.



Dada said...

Chris: As a native Oregonian (born with web feet), Portland is truly 'God's country' (if you don't mind the rain that makes it so) and all the people there because of it's lushness and all it has to offer.

Mrs. Dada and I were just (again, and again, and again) thinking of moving. Always at the top of our list? OREGON! Good luck to you and (lucky) Jim!

Oh, and @ Dusty: "I would plead insanity...and I would be...insane." Hate to contradict you, but you would be perfectly coherent and, were we living in a society of similar dispositions, you would be acquitted - hands down, I have no doubt!

But, alas, I fear such is not the case.

Fran said...

Strange, Lib & Dusty's remarks seem to have vanished???

I did send you an e mail Christopher... I've lived in Oregon now for 30 years. I love it, but it comes w risks of being a part of the ring of fire.

The Pacific NW is a really nice place & I like it enough to stay.

OHSU is a top notch medical facility-- a teaching hospital- Oregon's best.

Dada & Mrs! That would be sweet if you decided to move back to Oregon.
Things are getting gnarly there on the border & I don't know that red Texas was ever right for you true blue sorts.

Still a very different climate... maybe a welcomed change.. or are you just getting closer to Canada should that move be necessary???

Mauigirl said...

This is a shameful step - it needs to be challenged all the way to the Supreme Court.

Re: Portland - great place, we visited there a few years ago. Very nice combination of neighborly city and gorgeous outdoor stuff right outside of it.