Reuters - Over the past two weeks, Japanese government officials and Tokyo Electric Power executives have repeatedly described the deadly combination of the most powerful quake in Japans history and the massive tsunami that followed as "soteigai," or beyond expectations.
When Tokyo Electric President Masataka Shimizu apologized to the people of Japan for the continuing crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant he called the double disaster "marvels of nature that we have never experienced before".
But a review of company and regulatory records shows that Japan and its largest utility repeatedly downplayed dangers and ignored warnings — including a 2007 tsunami study from Tokyo Electric Power Cos senior safety engineer.
It's nice for Japanese lauded for politeness, but how rude is greed that's led to safety lapses causing a nuclear nightmare?
The Japanese built the plant on a known earthquake zone. They built it near the ocean for emergency-water supplies. They knew a large earthquake would hit sooner or later and that it could trigger a tsunami that would overwhelm the plant. They knew what caused the Chernobyl catastrophe and what steps other nations had taken to harden systems. In the face of all that though, the Japanese government left it to a company with a terrible safety record to handle the decisions. That company, Tokyo Electric, the largest utility in the world, chose the cheapest way out for the sake of the bottom line and "externalities" be damned, meaning the people and environment and everything (but the company's and its top investors'/executives' bank accounts at the time) be damned.
Greed kept Japan from using the best safety ideas from around the world: hardened vents, etc.
It's the same Greed Syndrome that kept BP from using the best shutoff valves on the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico.
It's the same Greed Syndrome that caused Massey Coal to cut corner after corner after suffering so many preventable coal-mining tragedies.
It's the same Greed Syndrome that's allowing all the fracking that's going on around the planet.
It's the same Greed Syndrome that's using depleted uranium right now in attacking Qaddaffi's armored weaponry in Libya.
Greed is evil. There is no way around it. It is the essence of evil. Selfishness is evil, and greed is selfishness on steroids, as it were.
Capitalism is based upon selfishness. That's it's core spirit, it's core mentality. It is an evil ideology. There is no way around it. It too is "essence of evil."
Coercive socialism is also rooted in selfishness; however, voluntary socialism is not necessarily. Voluntary socialism can be other-first for the sake of the whole, which if left unmolested by selfishness, always ends up benefiting every member of the whole, including the one whose initial impetus is wholesomeness-oriented where the "whole" is the whole of humanity and necessarily the whole of existence being manifested in any way, spirit and/or "matter."
Greed is always the reason companies with terrible safety & environmental records end up contaminating the world and/or killing mass numbers of workers, etc. Who pays? The answer is everyone, including the shortsighted-greedy.
Don't assume that because Japan's nuclear-power industry failed to meet even US regulations that the US is immune to nuclear disasters. Existence always ends up slapping down greed, and the US nuclear-power industry is based first on selfishness and greed.
Evil and capitalism, which is evil, and coercion are not in anyone's "enlightened" self-interest. The whole of humanity voluntarily giving and sharing all with all is the only right path out into the future forever. It is the essence of good: righteousness.