WILLIAMSON – It's election time, and Nick Rahall says he is fighting for coal, featuring me in his political TV ads, and criticizing the EPA.
It would seem not much has changed in his world. But the world of the southern West Virginia coal miners has changed a great deal. Jobs are being lost and family, state, county and city budgets are all being squeezed.
Rahall needs to go, and that’s been the case for 30 years. But for the record, I don’t support Evan Jenkins as Rahall claims in his ads. Jenkins, too, is just a politician, and he was unwilling to help when the trucking weight laws were being re-written years ago.
He also didn’t help when workers' compensation rates were being increased against coal companies to fund the compensation costs of other industries. The truck law should have allowed for 140,000-pound truckloads, but he instead supported 120,000 pounds which destroyed lots of jobs as did the workers' compensation rates.
In short, Jenkins is less bad than Rahall but he is not great for coal either.
The West Virginia politicians are so concerned with their own self-interests that they are willing to let coal miners be abused by an evil and incapable agency named MSHA.
Refusing to introduce meaningful laws to safeguard miners’ health and safety, playing a role in the UBB cover-up and not raising loud objections to the idling of continuous miner scrubbers makes clear that Republican and Democratic politicians don’t care about coal miner’s jobs or lives.
They talk a lot about how much they care, but, as the saying goes, their actions speak much louder than their words. They are a very sorry group, indeed. It’s frightening to think that these are some of our country’s government leaders.
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Senator Joe Manchin has had a tough few months. He claims he didn’t know about the natural gas at UBB, but he did. His daughter has put him in the forefront of the tax inversion issue. He didn’t even check to see who he was allowing in his office to interview him even though he is a member of the U. S. Senate Committee on Armed Services.
You would think that a guy who is supposed to know what is happening in Syria would know who is in his office.
The Senator loves to play the game of fooling people. He was trying to fool people when he set out to pass a teachers pension bond several years ago. His feelings were hurt when my campaign to stop the issuance of the $5.5 billion of teachers’ pension bonds was successful.
He was particularly angry and showed his whining nature when I refused to accept his offer of a position on one his committees in return for not opposing the bonds.
The public should know that the major purpose behind the bonds was to create hundreds of millions in fees for attorneys that had supported Joe for election.
Joe even got angry when my efforts to eliminate the sales tax on West Virginian’s food was partially successful.
But the clearest example of Joe’s character was made visible to me the night the UBB recovery team was finally able to determine there were no survivors among the 29 missing miners. Joe headed immediately for the national press cameras as he asked me if I was going down to meet the press, too.
I told him no, that I would stay with the families, and for him to please tell the press that was where I would be. I was told that when he was asked by the press where I was just a few minutes later he told them he did not know.
It seems Joe doesn’t know a lot.
It’s also clear Joe doesn’t really care to know what happened at UBB. He just cares about his political career.
This year, he was proud to publicly proclaim that he was sending my letter about what really happened at UBB to the prosecutor. He knows this was meaningless, as the prosecutors read the papers and watch the news, too.
But he thinks it helped him politically to act as if he was being tough on me. Also, it’s clear he never even took the time to read the Massey UBB investigation report that talked about the cause being natural gas.
I am sorry, Joe, that my efforts to help miners, lessen people’s food tax, safeguard the state budget, mine coal, help people keep a job and get the truth out to people have offended you. You have my apology.
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My friends and others continue to caution me that my being outspoken can only increase the scrutiny of me by the Feds. They are probably right, but I have no choice.
My websites and documentaries tell the truth about UBB and other issues. I think I have a right and an obligation to tell the truth.
If I don’t get the truth out about UBB, the idling of continuous miner scrubbers and the mistreatment of miners by Obama and his agencies then I am no better than they are.
The coal miners have no voice for their concerns as the UMWA is useless, as are the West Virginia federal and state politicians. The coal companies are afraid to speak out and most miners refuse to speak publicly as well.
You see, being truthful isn’t always easy nor always in your own self-interest. That’s the reason “lots of people lie a lot.”
The individuals who work for the government in all these agencies that are destroying American jobs today forget that they represent the United States of America’s government.
As U.S. officials, their actions – when taken to advance their own careers and their own ideologies and views rather than justice and fairness – are what textbooks call government tyranny. The cruel, unreasonable, and arbitrary use of their positions and offices is exactly that – tyranny.
They are playing the role of tyrants who are determined to have their way and to stop freedom of speech. They do this because their actions cannot be justified by, nor stand in the light of truth. This is why they use many tactics to silence those that speak the truth, and why they have used those tactics against me for 30 years.
It’s not just agency heads either.
Senator Manchin himself has taken many actions to stop my speech over the years which suggests he doesn’t want the truth to be known for some reason.
It is indeed sad that such people essentially control the lives of millions of hard working honest Americans.
Blankenship was chairman of CEO of Massey Energy until his retirement in 2010. He now occasionally writes commentaries on his website – donblankenship.com – where he labels himself an “American competitionist.”