The Meaning of Anti-Coal in West Virginia
The meaning of anti-coal in West Virginia is broad. To be against coal doesn’t mean to be against the mining and use of coal. Thanks to the Coal Industry’s intensive PR campaign, to be against mountaintop removal, a relatively new mining process in which 1/4 to 2/3 of a mountain is blown away and its debris pushed into the surrounding stream-valleys, also means to be anti-coal.
But it doesn’t even stop there. According to the WV delegates who opposed the coal river wind resolution (over half of them), it is anti-coal to support the preservation of ONE mountain from destruction so that it can be used as a wind farm that will bring more jobs, safer jobs, and clean energy.
Lurking in the shadows of the WV State House, Friends of Coal (FOC) President Bill Raney worked assiduously to build opposition to the coal river wind resolution. A description of his actions can be read in my post “Coal Cowards Take Name Off Dead Resolution.”
The coal industry created the PR front group Friends of Coal primarily to change the meaning of pro-coal to pro-mountaintop removal. Though touted as a “grass-roots” campaign, FOC actually gets most of its funding from executives and major stockholders. Miners and their families are “strongly encouraged” to display FOC propaganda to give the PR group the image of a popular movement. Friends of Coal is not grass-roots. It is more like lespidesia-roots, the asian weed sprayed on barren mountaintop removal sites like astroturf; it might look like grass, but it is simpy a coal industry prop that requires alot of expensive fertilizer–nitrogen and bullshit.
In the early days, to be anti-coal could mean being against child labor laws, unions, and basic safety resolutions. Today, to be anti-coal means supporting the construction of a wind industry or the listing of Blair Mountain on the National Historic Register.
Reality is relative only in the sense that our comprehension of it can be maniputlated. With enough money and enough determinition, the minions of King Coal have changed the real meaning of anti-coal to define anything that could negatively affect the bottom-line of a few multinational corporations.
War is Peace. Destruction is Beauty. Profit is Progress.
This entry was posted on April 15, 2009 at 5:35 pm and is filed under Save Appalachia, Social and Political Commentary with tags anti-coal, Bill Raney, coal, Coal River Wind, Friends of Coal, John Rockefeller, Mountaintop Removal, Robert Byrd. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.