Ah yes, the legalities of our lawyerly society…one of the truly frustrating experiences is watching a case built on common sense disintegrate into the bullshit of corporate attorneys…or, in other words:
You can find an expert to give expert testimony on anything.
Take for example, global warming…despite common sense dictating something is seriously going wrong on our planet, despite the near unanimous consensus that we are in big, freaking trouble unless we do something fast and even then, it might not be enough…well, our corporate brethren and their Republicans (primarily) can still trot out an expert or two…versus thousands, to say that what we all bear witness to is merely a fluctuation in normal temperature and it surely isn’t man-made.
Well, in the Gulf…a big game of what can you prove is beginning, all centered around the short and long term health effects resulting from all that toxic crude and corexit dispersant dumped into the waters.
British Petroleum and Nalco, you can be sure, will have attorneys all over this…trying to demonstrate that in fact, there are no health effects, everything is fine…it’s all just a case of some wicked flu going down in these four states, or once its acknowledged by the government that something’s going wrong (if ever), well then these two companies will hire their own experts to say that yes, people are getting sick, yes, it would appear we got us a four state cancer cluster, yes, it is odd, perhaps even an alarming statistical anomaly, but it is impossible to clearly demonstrate or prove the oil spill caused this…
The stories of sickness in the Gulf continue to come:
A Cry for Help – American Zombie
Gulf Residents Concerned About Health Effects of Oil Spill, but Link Remains Unconfirmed – Dean Praetorius
BP hit by health claims over Gulf of Mexico clean-up – Richard Blackden
Gulf Oil Spill Workers Report Health Problems – Amanda Gardner
Gulf spill sickness wrecking lives – Dahr Jamil
As an example of the attitudes to be expected out of any upcoming court fights, I give you Ken Feinberg, BP paid administrator of the BP claims fund, from an article by Mac McClelland:
“Feinberg, interrupting a person complaining about not being compensated for paralyzing headaches: “You gotta demonstrate that the physical injury is due to the spill. We are paying physical injury claims.”
Yep, just try proving your headache came from exposure to oil and dispersants, despite the fact you never had headaches of any frequency or strength before the spill, try to prove it came as a result…especially when BP will have ten expert witnesses for their defense being questioned by ten well paid attorneys to prove otherwise.
If/when this happens, you may be able to call it law, but you sure won’t call it justice…
So yeah, this is why I worry…
Have a nice day.
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