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I’m really tired of hearing how Obama is costing WV coal jobs. Not True!

This is for you folks out there who are buying the Tea Party Joe Manchin lies. From West Virginia Blue, a blog I have great respect for:

West Virginia Coal Mine Jobs Rise Under Obama

      Despite the lies told by Sen. Joe Manchin (Joe Manchin) and Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin (Joe Manchin) and the Friends of Coal Barons Who Kill Miners, President Barack Obama’s EPA has not spelled doom to coal jobs. In fact, the opposite is true:

While the Obama administration and the EPA may be taking a harder look at mountain top removal mining permits, a quick look at coal mining employment in West Virginia reveals that since Obama took office in the winter of 2009 coal mining employment has grown by over 1,500 jobs or by 7.4%. If we measure from the end of the national recession in June 2009 (or the 2nd Quarter of 2009) to the third-quarter of 2011 (the latest available data), employment in the coal mining industry has grown by 3,100. For comparison, total employment in West Virginia has only grown by 2.9% over this period.

People have to really hate Obama to push the lies that come out of the coal industry, out of Manchin’s office and out of the Romney Campaign. It’s possible that the West Virginia politicos (even those claiming to be “Democrats”) have other goals in mind for this pathetically poor state.

We’ll see.

I’m starting to get form letters back from my representatives in the Senate and Congress…

… all glad to see my concern and all saying they’ll keep me in mind as legislation comes up.

However, not one of them, whether Democrat or Republican, got elected without financial support from the coal companies that are destroying West Virginia with mountain top removal to get coal. If you think that means they are going to regulate the coal companies who are destroying our state… ruining homes, water supplies and the tourist industry… then you have got to be kidding yourself.

Here’s a piece by Michael Jonathon:

So… of you’re anywhere in the states that have Appalachian coal mining, keep this in mind next Fall when the politicians are campaigning in your neck of the woods.

The EPA’s West Virginia coal mining smackdown

Salon asked the author of BIG COAL, Jeff Goodall, why it is important that the government has move to close a mountaintop removal coal mine.Here is a exerpt… but you will likely want to read the whole article:

clipped from
On Thursday, the EPA sent shock waves through the environmental movement and the coal industry when it announced it was revoking the permit for a huge mountaintop removal mine in West Virginia. After two weeks in which House Republicans have made it clear that one of their top priorities is crippling the EPA, the agency’s decision seemed a forthright declaration that it will not back down.
Why is the EPA’s announcement that has revoked the permit for the Spruce No. 1 Mine in West Virginia a big deal?
Because it shows that the EPA is finally willing to do its job and enforce the laws on mountaintop removal mining. Ever since the Bush administration came in and gutted the EPA and changed some of the rules for mountaintop removal mining, the industry has gotten away with whatever it wants.
The revoking of this permit sends a very clear signal that the agency is now going to enforce the laws, and they are going to protect the water supplies of this region, and not just roll over for Big Coal.
blog it

Those of us who live in West Virginia have worried for quite awhile over the polluting properties of mountaintop removal in Coal Mining, as well as “fracking” for gas and oil in shale rock. Both are happening in this state and both are poisoning its residents. This move by the EPA is both brave and valuable; brave because it knows the newly powerful Republicans would destroy the EPA if it could, valuable because it shows that the government can do its job and protect citizens from corporate induced danger.

It is a good first step, but this is ONLY a first step.

If you go back to LBJ, you’ll remember this ad’s source…

…but there is no A Bomb here… instead a destructive force that absolutely affects us folks in West Virginia and nearby states.

So far, no more survivors in Mine Disaster

Signals being sent by tapping on pipes down shafts which have been drilled 1000 feet or more have not gotten responses. Governor Manchin’s update this morning was pretty depressing, but family members of the four unaccounted for men still continue to wait.

Perhaps they will be able to send a team down later today, but the odds against finding anyone alive are very long.

Coal Mine Disaster Update

It now looks like the mine, about 30 miles south of Charleston, has a significant history of safety violations, including 57 infractions just last month for (among other things) not properly ventilating the highly combustible methane.

It has also ignored many of these violation notices, refused to pay fines and in the past year, faced federal fines of more than $382,000 for repeated serious violations involving its ventilation plan and equipment at Upper Big Branch.

Massey CEO Don Blankenship has a history of bribing politicians and judges and threatening reporters who bring the mine’s violations public. Check out some from the last four years on ABC HERE.

Unfortunately, it looks like Senators Byrd and Rockefeller looked the other way as well.