MuMTAZER – Reason for the disaster: merciless capitalism

Reason for the disaster: merciless capitalismThe government is no longer very influential or able to control the media because of the high number of casualties. The prime minister is unable to manage the crisis. His every effort and act, particularly the violence he and his aides have committed against the protestors, causes outrage. The people now believe that the government will protect the culprits of this tragic disaster. There are two actors that are particularly responsible: the government that was supposed to monitor and inspect mining sites and the mining corporation that was supposed to take every measure and precaution to prevent disaster. The prime minister, in an initial statement, argued that all measures had been taken and that all necessary inspections had been performed, exonerating the government and the corporation of any responsibility. He also compared this tragedy to mining accidents that took place a century ago in the West and further normalized it. But the people found this explanation unconvincing. Media reports indicate that there is huge reaction in Turkey and around the world. The government is now unable to deal with this growing reaction.The president paid a visit to the site and said that the rules and measures should be reviewed and revisited. But this is not about the rules or the measures. The prime minister, by declaring that the responsible actors are spotless and innocent prevents us from focusing on the true reasons for the accident and determining what is missing in the set of rules and measures. In consideration of the growing reaction, prosecutors and inspectors took action and decided to review the company’s reports.Who murdered 284 people? Do you expect the accomplices to the murder to offer an accurate answer to this question? Nonetheless, the mining policies should be reviewed and the reasons for the accident should be identified properly. But because the real reasons would point to government responsibility, they will never be revealed. The government believes that everybody will ignore the facts if it hides them. But the truth is already out in the open.A version of merciless capitalism reigns in the mining sector. The state leases the mining site to a private corporation for a certain period of time. The corporation that rents the site reduces the costs and increases production to create greater profit. The best way to do this is to give up on expensive workplace safety measures. The corporation applies to private inspection companies and then it passes the test at every inspection. This merciless capitalism is further aided by crony capitalism, which makes disaster and tragedy inevitable.The permits to open a mining site are granted by the Prime Minister’s Office this is one of the signs of this crony capitalism. The prime minister controls the economic assets and tools of the state himself. He does not share his power in this matter. The corruption investigation revealed on Dec. 17, 2013 should be reconsidered in light of this tragedy. The permit given to the mining site may be relevant to the pools the prime minister created. The prime minister’s effort to absolve the company could be explained by this crony relationship. It is also a possibility that the distribution of mining permits may be relevant to the “pooling problem” that Turkey is unable to deal with. This possibility makes a proper investigation of the real reasons for the accident impossible. When the true reasons are not identified, future accidents cannot be prevented. Those who focus on the technical issues and deficiencies should criticize these twisted relationships in the mining sector. No proper measure can be taken within the crony capitalism relationship and rules of merciless capitalism. And if they are taken, these measures will remain ineffective. And you cannot identify the proper reasons because you have test results that indicate the inspected company passed the tests. There is only one remedy. To find the truth, an international inspection company with International Labour Organization (ILO) approval should investigate the accident to identify the real reasons.

SOURCE: Today Zaman

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