Sirotablog: When Companies Leave Communities for Dead

Poor Butte

The Los Angeles Times today has a fascinating piece on Butte, Montana – better-known to locals as "Butte, America." If you haven't been there, you really should go. It is a case study in contrasts. Its citizens are a tribute to the wonderful, hard-scrabble spirit of Americans. But its history is a reminder of the tragic consequences of corporate greed and negligence. As the Times details, mining companies now owned by British Petroleum have essentially left a giant hole in the earth called the Berkeley Pit, where highly-toxic water is filling up at an alarming rate. As the piece notes, "the wine-dark water is as acidic as Pepsi, filled with heavy metals." The water is so toxic that when birds migrating from Canada to California set down on the lake, they never took flight again. Autopsies "showed burns and sores in their esophaguses and stomachs from drinking and feeding in the water." And the water is rising to a level where it "could begin seeping into a nearby aquifer," contaminating the town's drinking water.
But Big Business always looks after Heartland America... doesn't it?

Yes, but only on the Bizzaro World.

By the way: the "Runaway Bride"? NOT F@#KING NEWS. Just another distraction to keep you from really paying attention.


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