The only person to go to prison for a string of corporate pollution scandals was a crusading scientist who exposed them


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/11/25/the-only-person-to-go-to-priso.html


#2

Not surprising, to me that is.


#3

How is it fair that a company can just fabricate a scapegoat company to take all the blame? If they got away with it this time, why doesn’t it happen all the time? Like an oil company could just say, “oh that broken spewing rig, it isn’t really ours anymore. It’s the responsibility of this independent company we just created, who happen to only have a few dollars in the bank, so any fines or lawsuit payouts will soon make it bankrupt.”

If responsibility can be so easily shifted, why can’t they just shift it back? If corporations are considered persons this budding off of scapegoat entities shouldn’t be allowed.


#4

When I hear stories like this, I think about how David Simon describes his dramatic influences for “The Wire”:

But instead of the old gods, The Wire is a Greek tragedy in which the postmodern institutions are the Olympian forces. It’s the police department, or the drug economy, or the political structures, or the school administration, or the macroeconomic forces that are throwing the lightning bolts and hitting people in the ass for no decent reason. In much of television, and in a good deal of our stage drama, individuals are often portrayed as rising above institutions to achieve catharsis. In this drama, the institutions always prove larger, and those characters with hubris enough to challenge the postmodern construct of American empire are invariably mocked, marginalized, or crushed.

I’d add that he’s describing indifferent and capricious institutional gods. Some of the ones we’re about to see coming into their own in the next four years will be actively malicious.


#5

It’s the equivalent of firing the intern. Whenever a PR scandal happens, the company says it was caused by a (fictitious) intern, who of course has been fired. The people complaining are minimally satisfied, the jerkasses who caused the problem get to avoid responsibility, and everyone goes home happy.


#6

Seems to be a very dark news day today. When trying to ‘do the right thing’ leads to things like this, we need to start handing out some Nobel Prizes pronto. And more, of course.


#7

And it helps that suitcases of money appear on car seats at 4pm on tuesdays.


#8

So, when the environment gets bad enough, I bet drumpf will declare certain regions “sacrifice zones”, and sell corporations license to dump everything there.
I hear kudzu is really easily spread, like a plant-virus mashup.
Perhaps some version can be bred to be helpful to us?
Carbon capture, air production, factory disruption etc.


#9

Isn’t that what having kids is for? Quick, go create some fake bank accounts for the younger kid in case you get in trouble.


#10

"a 40 month sentence for allegedly not performing three tests that her lab billed $150 each for"
Almost four years for supposedly $450 worth of services? How the fuck does that happen? How do people like tRump get away with massive wage theft and fraud into the tens of millions with maybe a fine, yet a few hundred dollars results in multiple years of jail time? Never mind, I answered my own question.


#11

If Trump sticks in my craw, if it feels shameful to imagine him leading the country, it helps to remember that bankers too rich to jail, companies too big to fail, trusts too powerful to break up, this is exactly the kind of “greatness” that Trump promises to expand on. There are ways in which Trump is the perfect representative for what America has become, and this story illustrates that very well.


#12

Where I live and work (in the environmental field) the pollution belongs to the owner of the property, however, the Superfund and CERCLA regulations hold anyone who ever had anything to do with the property responsible. Current owners are broke? bill the last owners. That is how it should work, and these paperwork shenanigans are merely a stalling tactic until the lawyers settle it out.

I don’t see a judge ruling that nobody is responsible for a toxic waste site. Someone is, even if it’s the government at the end of the day.


#13

First you gather all the sinners together, with a goat. Then, you put all your sins on the goat. Then you send the goat out of town. That’s how that works.


#14

It does. This is pretty much the maneuver that made Mitt Romney rich.


#15

Look for a lot more of this under Drumpf’s Deplorables! The DDs will try to crucify anyone who dares question ANYTHING.


#16

Well you’re easy to satisfy; or Uber driver ratings corrupts dilutely; or baked goods are totes riding herd on jurisdiction; or yes, Sherri S. Tepper anthology review is mandatory (Thanks O’Sturgis BarrAmy!) Looking forward to the series of ‘The Margarets’ deals by Lehman…et al.


#17

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