11.14.14

Mine Blast from the Past

Posted in Culture of Lickspittle, Ted Nugent, The Corporate Bund at 12:59 pm by George Smith


Ol’ Uncle Contemptible, Ted Nugent, paid by Don Blankenship, at “Coalstock” in 2009.

This week Don Blankenship of Massey energy was indicted by the US government for his role in a calamitous explosion at one of his company’s coal mines in 2010.

From the New York Times:

The former chief executive of the company involved in the nation’s worst coal mine disaster in 40 years, in which 29 men died in West Virginia in 2010, was charged on Thursday with widespread violations of safety rules and deceiving federal inspectors.

Donald L. Blankenship, who formerly ran the Massey Energy Company, was indicted on four criminal counts by a federal grand jury in the Upper Big Branch disaster near Montcoal, W.Va.

Mr. Blankenship was accused of looking away from hundreds of safety violations “in order to produce more coal, avoid the costs of following safety laws, and make more money.”

IN 2009 Massey held the laughable “Coalstock,” a Labor Day celebration in West Virginia. The celebrity entertainment was Nugent and two other country artists, Hank Williams, Jr. and John Rich of Big & Rich.

From this blog, 2009 quote from Blankenship at “Coalstock:”

“Today was a good day for American workers past, present and future. This historic event brought tens of thousands of people together to show their support for the men and women whose hard work built this country and we were proud to welcome them …

“It is also about what our government is allowing others to do to American labor. Our government, environmental extremists, American corporations, and politicians on the right and the left are all endangering American labor.”

In Thomas Frank’s Pit the Billionaire, a book bought for the blog by a loyal reader, Blankenship and “Coalstock” are described:

There is no better instance of [cognitive] erasure than the enormous rally held in West Virginia on Labor Day 2009 for the express purpose of announcing the solidarity between coal miners and the coal mine operators … The get together feature the protest favorites Sean Hannity and Ted Nugent and was presided over by Don Blankenship, the CEO of Massey Energy, a pollution-spewing strike-breaking mogul of the old school. Dressed in American flag clothing and boasting that the gathering had cost him “a million dollars or so” Blankenship took the stage and declared he was there to “defend American labor because no one else will” … Eight months after that rally, 29 workers in Massey’s Upper Big Branch mine were dead from a huge underground explosion … Now when we find a mine operator claiming that his own struggles against regulation are actually the struggles of mine workers — workers who are then killed because mine regulations are not properly observed .. we have stumbled upon a near perfect example of what the sociologists call “complete horseshit.” The man’s ideas are so contrary to reality …

“The charges hold [Blankenship] personally responsible for … hundreds of safety violations in 28 months leading up to the explosion,” reads the Times.

If convicted Blankenship faces a prison sentence of up to thirty years.


Web error 500 — “internal server error” messages when accessing this blog are the consequence of a corporate hosting fault felt across its entire network. In other words, I can’t do anything about them but complain and have done so.

I am told, as have been many others, that engineers are working on the problem, which has now affected matters for about two weeks.

It is one of the reasons I haven’t posted much to the domain.

Be patient. I will keep you abreast of plans.

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