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Yes. It is so much better to have lot of low-paid miners in those tunnels so they can collapse on them and trap them than to invest in heavy capital equipment and pay fewer workers higher wages in safer jobs. We should go back to the good old days of black lung and child labor in order to give cartoonists more fishing spots.
Come down south and witness for yourself what these companies do to the mountains. I think you would change your mind if you saw the damage done. They ruin the landscape and poison the streams which kill the fish and birds. The people who rely on well and spring water will have none when it is all poisoned. Eventually this poison is going to reach the rivers, lakes and oceans. You don't know how important it is to have pristine waters until you don't have them anymore. Come down south and I will take you fishing and you will understand what it is all about.
Imagine you live on a beautiful ridgetop overlooking the ruffled mountaintops of West Virginia. Imagine your neighbor's grandpa sold the mineral rights to a coal company 75 years ago. Your neighbor kindly lets you know that the coal company who owns the rights to the minerals on his land has decided to start extracting. You congratulate your neighbor for making some money on his land.
Now, the next day, you awaken to the smell of burning and you you look out from your porch and see that your neighbors land is being scorched - on purpose - fine old hard wood trees being burned rather than harvested. The day after that, it's an explosion that has you bolt out of bed. You walk out to your ridge to see what the hell the noise is about and where once there was a slope that led from your place to your neighbor's that you used to run down when you were a kid, now there's a sheer cliff blown out by 4.5 million pounds of dynamite - a day.
You ask your neighbor, "What the hell you doing?" And he says, "I can't do nothing about it. My grandpa sold the mineral rights; I ain't got no say."
Then, the coal company shoves the debris into the headwater of the spring below you, the one that runs through your cousin's land and now your cousin can't drink the water because it's polluted. He can't fish, cause the fish are contaminated. He's out of work too, now that the company just uses non-union heavy machine operators instead of unionized underground miners who weren't afraid to speak up when they knew something was wrong with a mine.
According to an EPA environmental impact statement, more than 1,000 miles of Appalachian streams were permitted to be buried as of 2001. That was after the clean water act was slightly reworded by Bush in order to blow a path for the unfettered dumping of sediments into the valleys.
The abuse of your personal property rights are nothing compared to the rights of the coal company. This favoritism towards corporations over community should be wrong. Corporations are not people, yet they benefit from the rights of personhood without being required to be responsible stewards to their neighbors. We don't have to live this way. We shouldn't live this way.
Your comment is clueless. The companies doing the most mountaintop removal mining are also the companies with the highest safety violations in underground mines. Look no further than Massey Energy: the same company that can't manage to follow the law and create safe working conditions for it's underground miners -- with thousands of health and safety violations every year -- is the company that blows up the most mountains and dumps its mining waste in valleys, burying streams and contaminating water, poisoning water supplies of the residents of those areas. You seriously are clueless if you think the only reason to stop mountaintop removal mining is to help cartoonists out. But the truth is, you are probably not clueless. You probably are well aware of this -- because you probably are being paid by a big dirty coal company to comment on this cartoon. And, well, if you're not, then i can't imagine what your excuse is for your apparent lack of information.
Or we could reduce our energy needs, and invest in safe, renewable sources for the energy that we do need.
But that might cut into Koch Industries' profits, so it isn't an option.
America is the greatest country of course. Especially since you don't have to take care of it.
Dumber than coal for sure. Two awesome toons in a row. Now if you could stop running the audio through a TV-radio commercial sound processor.
Heading for vacation this week, so Little Green Man is standing in. Another take on the insane practice of mountaintop mining. Learn more about it and do something about it, whee!
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