As oil continues to pour from the sea floor off the coast of the Southern United States from the BP/Deepwater Horizon fiasco on April 20th, the public has become more outraged with BP, accusing the company of covering up the amount of petroleum, restricting access to footage of the spill for many weeks, and not taking all possible steps to mitigate the flow of the oil from the hole itself or its spread into the sensitive marshes of Louisiana.
By e-mail, the 501(c)(4) Moveon.org issued a call for members to protest yesterday at the BP Amoco Government Affairs office, listed by WhitePages.com as 1776 I St. NW in Washington. Just as BP cannot stop the oil from bleeding from the Earth and decimating entire populations of organisms very probably as yet unknown, they have not proven unable to conduct a “top kill” on the flow of blood from the hearts of their sign and petroleum-wielding protesters. Groups like Code Pink and USAction, their affiliations apparent from their t-shirts, made up most of the approximately 15-person crowd.
At around 12:30, I caught footage of Diane Wilson speaking, a woman who the day before had disrupted a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee meeting by pouring some distillate on herself. Here’s the video.
Ms. Wilson reserved much of her frustration for Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AL), who she had called out in the middle of the Senate meeting for what Ms. Wilson said is a desire to limit the liability cap of BP at the time of the spill, $75 million. As of this writing, BP has already paid out around $1 billion. Ms. Wilson told me that this was particularly ridiculous in light of the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster. Indeed, one of the signs at the protest was disparaging Senator Murkowski.
In a press conference in the Capitol Tuesday, the senior senator from Alaska expressed an interest in seeing an increase in the oil spill liability trust fund, a taxpayer-subsidized fund that would partially be responsible for the clean-up of the spill.
Protesters made a point of pouring more of what looked like crude petroleum onto the ground. One man would repeatedly dip a $1 bill into the crude and bullhorn passersby, asking them if they would like to have free money. There were no takers.