When all is said and done and the oil leak is finally resolved (in a generation or so), what has been happening for the past month in the gulf of Mexico will someday come to be known as BP's Chernobyl.
But, you say, how can it be BP's Chernobyl? Chernobyl is the location of a nuclear power plant in the Ukraine. Wouldn't it then be the U.S.'s Chernobyl?
Let me be clear: While no one will ultimately care about the fate of British Petroleum, what is happening in the gulf is of apocalyptic proportions to BP every bit as much as the gulf. It just hasn't sunk in yet with BP's executives who will soon be forced to hand in their resignations, collect their gold watches, or face civil damages.
Indeed, there will be no one left standing who is exonerated. Halliburton and corporate America will be seen every inch as much the culprit as BP, and the irony that 12,000 national guardsmen are being deployed to the border of Mexico -- and not to the gulf -- will be lost on no one.
This mess is larger than any president, or his administration. This mess is larger even than the human race. It is as big as the monster we have become, and a race, frankly, that deserves to rot for what we're doing to the natural world, to wildlife, fish, plants and the animal kingdom.