No punishment, in my opinion, is too great for the Man, who can build “his greatness upon his Country’s ruin.”
Anyone who accepts climate science, as most Americans, both Republican and Democrat, do today, can easily see that climate change is a huge threat to America.
We’ve already seen the threats to America from coast to coast:
- Hurricanes in Houston, New Orleans and Puerto Rico
- Daily high-tide flooding of city streets and damage to homes and businesses in Miami
- Droughts and water shortages in Arizona
- Wildfires in California to record heat along the East Coast.
Every year, the effects of climate change on America get worse and worse. Global heating is clearly not an issue for our kids and grandkids to handle in the future anymore. It’s an issue for us to handle today.
And yet, despite the ever more dire warnings from scientists and the signs of destruction clear to ordinary people, certain fossil fuel company executives continue to profit off of making the climate crisis worse.
These men — and a few women — are building their wealth off the suffering of the American people. Or, to paraphrase George Washington’s quote above, fossil fuel barons are building their greatness on their country’s ruin.
When Washington wrote those words to Jospeh Reed, in the middle of the American Revolution, he was talking about “Monopolizers” and other businesspeople who were keeping desperately needed food, fodder, cloth and other supplies from the Continental Army by hoarding or price-gouging.
Today, I don’t think it’s too much to apply Washington’s criticism to leading fossil fuel executives who keep Americans from getting the solar power and climate solutions they want.
Here I’ll name six names:
- Charles and David Koch, who use the wealth generated by Koch Industries holdings in oil and natural gas to fund a group called Americans for Prosperity, which tries to bully government to drop support for clean energy and climate solutions.
- Then there are the long-time CEOs of ExxonMobil, especially Lee Raymond and Rex Tillerson, who suppressed research by the company’s own scientists that burning petroleum contributed to the greenhouse effect, and that the resulting climate change was dangerous. There’s no evidence that current ExxonMobil CEO Darren Woods, who took the company’s helm in 2017, is doing any better at coming clean about his company’s climate pollution or dirty politics to crush solar and clean energy.
- Finally, let’s remember the current CEOs of electric utilities who insist on shoving natural gas projects like fracking and pipelines down the throats of communities that don’t want the pollution. I’m thinking of Thomas Farrell, CEO of Dominion Energy, who made his company push the Atlantic Coast Pipeline project through dozens of communities in Virginia who opposed it.
These men all know that climate change is dangerous to America and the world, and that humans burning fossil fuels is one of the main causes of climate danger. Yet, these monopolizers still push the dirty energy their companies sell. And these same men still pay to spread propaganda against climate science and push laws that make solar power harder to for Americans get.
If that isn’t building your greatness on your country’s ruin, then nothing is.
— Erik Curren, The Solar Patriot