Boycott BP: Part two

Today was my first day promoting a Boycott of  BP in Ann Arbor. I positioned myself with sign in hand at the Ann Arbor maine street BP. I made sure to be on the side walk, and not on BP property, and I provided enough room for walkers to pass by. This way I was not doing anything illegal. Free speech rocks!!!

In general the boycott protest went well. I was there for a little over an hour and recieived 103 either, honks, thumbs up, waves, cheers, woo hoos, or Damn Rights!.

Three people who had pulled into the BP station to get gas, saw my sign and drove off without getting gas (instant boycott). One guy yelled, “Your right. I should boycott their ass.”

I figure some others might go some where else the next time they get gas. For every thumbs up, I figure there must have been 5 to 10 times as many people who saw the sign. And this was at a slow traffic time.

I also had four people take a picture of me and my sign to I assume to show friends.

It was not all honks, and cheers I am afraid. One guy walking by said, “If you don’t support BP they won’t be able to pay for the spill clean up.”

He walk away before I could ask him if he was serious, but I could tell he was . I thought about it for a second, and realized the crazy logic.

I mean if that was the case then why stop at simply getting your gas at BP to show your financial support?

Why not send BP a charitable donation directly like one would say to the Sierra Club? Or why not ask your representatives to create a special BP tax to mandate our support right?

We are talking about one of the richest, most profitable, most powerful company and industries in the world. They got that way by hiring an army of lobbyists, and having a “cozy’  relationship with the gov’t so they would look the other way with regulations and safety for decades.

So, now that they screwed up, “we” the gas buying public, according to this guy, need to bail them out because they could not afford to clean up the spill without it? That is his argument, and it sound like the greatest public relation spin for BP of all time. BP has the money believe me. They had a record profit year before this happened, and have been doing great for years. Anyone remember the illogical gas price hikes during the last eight years?

Another one yelled, “They [BP stations] are independently owned.” In other words, it is not Joe BP station owners’ fault. They just happened to be in bed with an evil parent company. For one, independent or not, they still benefited from Parent BP’s practices of cheap, unsafe oil extraction. So they also take the PR hit when the company screws up.

I figure by boycotting BP stations, we affects BP’s and the independent station owner’s bottom line. This will get the independent BP station owners who have some pull, and probably are not too happy about the spill to go after their evil parent. The station owners who lose money from the boycott can also sue parent BP just like the share holders are doing for gross mismanagement which lead to a loss of stock share value, or customer at the pump.

In fact, a boycott at the pump can nudge independent station owners to flex some muscle, and if these station owners are truly independent and against there evil parent company, they can always switch brands of gas they sell. Maybe they can hang their shingle with a company that is not responsible for the worse US environmental disaster in my life time. Maybe, just maybe BP’s action may lose them the right to do business in the US, then all of the independent station owners will need to shop around for a new supplier, more responsible supplier.

3 responses to “Boycott BP: Part two

  1. The Destructionist

    In light of the BP oil calamity it’s quite obvious that something must be done, and fast, if we are to save our world from corporations that would prefer to place huge profits above that of our environmental and financial welfare.

    As large corporations gobble up smaller corporations in an attempt to seize an even bigger piece of the global economic pie, it seems that businesses have been allowed to grow, unfettered, into unwieldy corporate behemoths (a.k.a., British Petroleum) with little, if any, regulations regarding their obligations to national sovereignties or allegiances.

    Maybe it’s just me, but I believe that if a corporation begins its “life” in a particular country, than it has an obligation to that country and its people: due in part to the patronage of its citizens throughout the years in helping that corporation to grow. When I hear about American businesses pulling up stakes and moving to other countries in lieu of cheaper labor and supplies elsewhere, I feel both embarrassed and betrayed. (They would be nothing if it weren’t for people like you and me. After all, we purchased their services, time and time again, fostering them constantly by giving them the opportunity to flourish. Our final reward for all our efforts? Millions of fellow Americans out of work, all desperately hoping that their unemployment benefits never run out.)

    I agree that the bad news is not just happening here in America, but around the globe. I blame that on the evolution of the business model: over the years, it has been compressed into a precise science in an effort to squeeze every last drop of profit out of the proverbial “bottom-line.” I began to notice the change in the late 1970’s when I was in my teens. Back then, it was a different world for me and I didn’t seem to care too much. Today however, it is a different story.

    What can we collectively do as Americans?

    Contact your representatives in the House and Senate. Let them know that

    big business should be regulated and ask them to enact laws to:

    1.Ensure that all corporations “born” within the United States deter from any and all actions that would adversely affect our country;

    2.Place high tariffs on imports from American businesses that move their bases of operations (not to mention our jobs) to other regions of the world;

    3.Work to limit their corporate power and influence in Washington D.C. by passing laws whereby politicians, found to have ties with said corporations or corporate lobbyists resign.

    4.Endeavor to ban all corporate favors and corporate lobbyists from Washington D.C.

    Essentially, it’s up to us to fashion our own future. If we don’t, rest assured that someone, or some corporation will.

    •(I know that BP was not born and reared here in the United States. I was merely using it as a reference as to what corporations are capable of doing if left to their own devices.)

  2. Im sorry but really all you are doing is hurting a privately owned gas station, not BP the corporation. This gas station owner is as much responsible for that spill as you and I are. Please reconsider your BP boycott before it does irreparable damage to an innocent person who at the end of the day is just trying to make a living and put food on this families table, like the rest of us.

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