...There is no such thing as clean coal. There is no clean way to burn it. There is no clean way to mine it. And there is no clean way to profit from it as long as the business of coal mining -- and the lives of the people who work in the business -- are in the grasping, sweaty, unregulated hands of the likes of Don Blankenship, who would kill 100 people rather than spend a nickel keeping one worker alive. The man has proven a blight upon the land, a blight upon the public discourse, a blight upon our politics, and a blight upon common decency.
Blankenship pressured Upper Big Branch management to violate safety standards in favor of maximizing production and profits, the indictment alleges. One mine manager received a handwritten note from Blankenship in March 2009 "chastising him" for "insufficient attention to cost-cutting," telling the manager, "You have a kid to feed. Do your job," the indictment alleged. That same mine manager at Upper Big Branch was told, when he wasn't producing as much coal as Blankenship demanded, "I could Khrushchev you. Do you understand?"
He has not spent a dime in the past 20 years that was not blood money, and now the Feds have run him to ground, and it will be very interesting to see how many of the politicians he had in his pocket will stand by him. (Watch the new Congress try to defund this lawsuit. Call me Kreskin.) Senator Joe Manchin (D-Anthracite) has pronounced himself not in favor of coal barons who kill people, a bold stand that will cost him nothing...
Friday, November 14, 2014
Clean Coal - Esquire: