We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Thursday, May 6, 2010

BP's Slick Greenwashing

from Mother Jones. This is the way corporations function under a capitalist system which legally requires them to pursue profits above all else. Hence they must make every effort through public relations (managing consent) to appear to be environmentally responsible while cutting corners by ignoring safety and environmental regulations. 

It follows that a more accurate slogan than the popular quote ("it's the economy, stupid!") from one of our great capitalist Presidents (Bill Clinton who sold us globalization) would be: "it's the economic system, stupid!"
For the last decade, BP has been busily engaged in a multi-million-dollar greenwashing campaign. Changing its name from British Petroleum to BP, the company adopted a new slogan, “Beyond Petroleum,” and began a “rebranding” effort to depict itself as a public-spirited, environmentally sensitive, green energy enterprise, the very model of 21st century corporate responsibility.