On Blood money:

I will preference this one by saying while I normally like to talk about alternatives and better courses of action, here I’m mainly focused on how shit blood money is, and how on basic logical, conceptual, and practical levels the use and more importantly the acceptance of blood money is bad.

What is blood money? Simply put its most basic description is monies paid to an injured party or their family for injury resulted from wrongdoing. The idea was (a long time ago) an ok one, as I do mark blood money as more desirable than “an eye for an eye” I also seem to recall it being recommended in the old testament for the killing of slaves. However we are NOT living in biblical times, and the concept that money can offset moral or ethical responsibility is… troubling to say the least, I’ll start with the real world examples and then get into my more esoteric ideas on the matter.

BP, as you know is a large for profit corporation that from 1995 to 2005 killed 22 of its employees, note this does NOT include the deaths on the deepwater horizon drilling platform(more on that in a bit). In an (small) effort to correct this whole making tons of money while killing workers thing, the OSHA has levied some fines, and BP has paid out a fair bit of blood money. Deepwater happened in 2010, where 11 more people were killed, and here we see the issue with blood money: It allows ( and I would say encourages) greedy assholes “business leaders” to ignore conditions that can kill workers. This is just one sad example, but there are really countless examples: GE killed 13 people with a faulty part in their automobiles, they knew it was bad and it took 10 years for the public to be informed. While this is a tragedy, how did we ensure this will never happen again? By making sure that no one went to jail and that GE paid blood money.

Ok so on a conceptual level: The idea that payment of monies can ease the suffering of someone who has suffered a loss is… tragic, but there is some truth to it. In today’s world money can get a lot, however when looking at loss it is incumbent on us to not just ease the suffering of those directly affected, but to.. I donno… try to ensure the tragedy does not happen again, and here is where blood money is working overtime against us. BP is still doing the oil thing, and they WILL kill another worker, GE is still making autos, and more importantly, the murder who made the call to use an inferior product, to sacrifice safety for profit, that person is still out there, maybe in a decision making position…

Lastly, BP has just settled with the U.S. government for some 16 billion dollars, this will cover the entire deepwater horizon incident: clean ups, payment to affected business ect… and here is where the logic fails: BP gets billions of dollars to extract natural resources, kills people in the process and RELLY FUCKS UP THE ENVIRONMENT THAT WE ALL SHARE, and as punishment, they have to give a portion of the money they got, nowhere is there any incentive to stop and there in lie the problem; accepting blood money allows really bad people to keep being bad and corrects nothing. It is basically a bribe that we are allowing our leaders to take on our behalf.

I would prefer a system where if your company kills someone, 1. That company instantly has all of its rights to operate anywhere revoked, 2. The leadership is bared for life from ever working as leadership again, 3. All earnings from the time that the dangerous situation arose (not when the death/accident actually happened) are equally distributed to the workers to assist in finding/training for new work. In truth BP never killed anyone, it was individuals making greedy decisions, and by being cool with blood money we are allowing them to just keep on keeping on…

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