Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Willing suspension of disbelief

When you watch a movie about talking animals, and manage to enjoy it even though, you know, animals can't really talk, you have accepted the premise of the show and can move on past the lack of reality. You have willingly suspended your disbelief. This then allows you to experience the joys and emotions stirred up by the characters and the story, even though it's obviously not real.

I think a similar mental feat is at work with our Republican friends. Put these two ideas together in your head for a moment. 1) We have too much government and too many regulations that are strangling business. 2) Drill, baby, drill.

Scratch a Republican, and you'll find both of these ideas, happily coexisting. Need I say more than, Sarah Palin?

I'm quite certain that our Republican friends deplore the BP oil spill in the gulf. They lament the destruction of the fishing and tourism businesses that will result, and the jobs lost. And they probably worry about environmental damage and the expenses of clean up, especially if shifted to the taxpayers.

There is no rational way to square these concepts. Let oil companies drill, baby, drill, but don't regulate them. So, then, what? Prayer alone is enough to prevent oil spills? Oil companies will never screw up? (See, Amoco Cadiz, Exxon Valdez, BP in the Gulf of Mexico) We need to just accept the oil spills that happen as a cost of doing business? What do Republicans really think about this?

Well, I think they don't think about it. They've willing suspended their disbelief. They just ignore the potential problems and focus on, apparently, whatever talking point party leaders are pushing at the moment. Drill, baby, drill, but OMG do not regulate those poor oil companies because government is evil and screws up everything it touches.

It's just not rational.

And don't get me started on the religious conservatives who believe God gave humans dominion over the earth but also the obligation to be good stewards of it, and yet who say, drill, baby, drill but OMG do not regulate those poor oil companies because government is evil and screws up everything it touches. Sarah Palin?


Sisyphus said...

Silly rabbit. Logic is for liberals. Quit applying it over there. It will just drive you mad.

They could give a shit about the oil disaster. If its not on their TV it doesn't exist. And since there's no video showing globs of oil washing up or vast arrays of fish rotting in the tepid Gulf air, 'drill baby drill' is not abated in the slightest in their minds.

Excellent point on the internalization of the cost. I really think that as a country we should see more mobilization to stop the problem instead of all this hot air talking about who's fault it is. Time enough for that later. But taxpayers will eventually get shafted on this, we should do everything we can to mitigate the damage.

And as far as the religious conservatives, some of them might be reachable on this issue. Some will recognize that spilling into the Gulf God's gift of oil is pretty irresponsible. He might go Old Testament on their ass.

alan said...

Some religious conservatives do seem to be taking the "steward" obligation more seriously lately. I'm hoping that movement will spread.

Anonymous said...

Drill less baby - drill less

Adam Graham said...

Nice straw man you knocked down there.

Mike Lorrey said...

The republican solution is to hold the company liable for damages and criminally prosecute the BP executives who overrode standard safety procedures on the rig that caused this whole fiasco.

The democrat solution is to overreact, ban the entire oil industry, raise taxes on gasoline, and make everybody ride bicycles. Hey, worked for China.