Thursday, July 15, 2010

Tu Quoque, Buddy

"If BP is found to have gained access to Libyan oil reserves by using a mass murderer as a bargaining chip then, make no mistake, any money it makes off of that oil is blood money", - US senator Bob Menendez, on BP's relationship with the British and Libyan governments.

Oh dear. Not that I enjoy raising the No, you smell argument to an artform, but really - if I were a member of a legislative body that regularly voted through trillion dollar defence budgets and was sitting on two wars, plus sundry bombing campaigns in several countries with which my nation was not at war...

Well, I'd still feel free to bash BP, but I'd be a little slower to deploy phrases like "Blood money", I think, especially if I was standing next to Chuck "Strangle the Palestinians!" Schumer when I said it. Given the prostitutional relationship that exists between US politicians and military tech/crowd control sweethearts like Lockheed Martin and Raytheon, to name but two, the phrase rings a little hollow.

At brass tacks, it'd hardly be a huge, earth-shaking WTF??! moment to discover that BP and the last government had cooked up some Libyan skullduggery between them. It'd be a barnstorming, five-alarm head-exploder if a journalist followed some senator's little foot-stampy moral outburst by raising America's mega-billion, economy-propping, international death colossus as a negative.

I hate to be all Hey, if we're talking about this oil company's nefarious activities let's, like, you know, Iraq, man but really. If a gaggle of US senators want to drag hundreds of dead civilians into their bitchy, Gulf of Mexico gusher pissfight with BP, I feel somebody needs to go for the seven-year old's favourite argument - you started it, guys. If we're talking splattered civilians and blood money, I'd say there's a hell of a lot of Tu Quoque, buddy to be thrown around.

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