Wonder if there’s an ANCSA-like approach to the Dakota pipeline dispute. In that case, a pipeline could not be built until the Alaska Native claims were settled. The Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act is actually being honored…roughly…providing millions to a community-administered fund.
Are there any concessions that can be offered the Standing Rock Sioux, aside from the pipeline going through? I.e. signing an act into U.S. law like ANCSA.
For a country so gung-ho about entrepreneurship and a president who can’t say enough about STEM and innovation, there’s remarkably little action on actually creating a mutually beneficial solution to the dispute.
Instead it’s all framed as zero sum Environment v.s. Industry…which let’s face it *is a terrible framework* if you’re on the environment side. National Interest is easier to define in terms of “us” and “now”, compared to “them” and “later”.
It isn’t like no solution/compromise is possible. There’s already an existing arrangement, the one we’re all complicit in.
We socially conscious Americans love living in the land of digital music/video, games, sports, Google and Apple and Whole Foods. We have a love/hate relationship with the quality of life v.s. cost of living situation, migrating around the country to find the right fit.
Supporting our lifestyle is this fact: we live this life afforded us by the U.S. government, and the companies and individuals that pay the most revenue to the U.S. government (in taxes) are those whose interests are strongly tied to the price of oil. It’s oil companies like Exxon Mobil, major banks (who lend to oil companies), and major tech companies like Apple and Google (who depend on oil-consuming manufacture and road, air and sea transportation).
Then there’s the security aspect of oil. The Obama Administration has continued a policy begun quietly during the Bush years, to kick foreign oil producers in the nads. That’s why we import less from African countries, the Middle East and North Africa than we did 20 years ago. Less money for Iran, Saudi Arabia and the like, so they have less money for the bullsh*t they run with manipulating the Islamic faithful for their own Elite interests.
That’s why it’s open season on fracking and the Gulf of Mexico and hitherto “protected” areas. There’s a tacit understanding between U.S. oil companies and the U.S. government, that if they take the hit of lower prices, the U.S. government will make it easier for them to get to domestic oil and gas. And so that’s the way it’s been, from George W. to Barrack O.
So when people start protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline, that’s the context in which the government and major economic players see it. That’s the calculus that weighs the Standing Rock Sioux against Everything Else and says, “meh”.
I think that probably counted more or at least as much as race in the case of the Bundys — they weren’t pissing in the eye of a billion dollar National Interest. That they were flag-waving white dudes just made it easier for them to get off.
Until we change this framework — of the DAPL being seen by the U.S. government as a U.S. national interest. You have to change the framing, you have to change the way people connect the dots, you have to show what alternatives can be built with the resources we have now, and you have to show what this can create for the future.
Frame, connect, build and create.
Otherwise it seems hard to see this ending any other way than like the Occupy Protests, where there’s a GI Joe Woodstock “movement” but no actual compensation/restitution for those worst hit by the crisis.