Many things can happen in a week to knock your world off track. It is enough time to see your heroes become zeroes. A couple of weeks ago I called the Niles City Council heroes for banning fracking in their city. I pointed out they were on the right side of that issue. My proof was that the corporate worshipping Warren Tribune Chronicle Editor Frank Robinson gave them an onion in his Saturday’s Orchids & Onions column for their stand against fracking. Just this week the Niles City Council rescinded their ban against fracking. I would have bet my house that this Saturday Editor coo, coo, ca-choo, Robinson would now give them an Orchid. Sure enough, I open today’s Warren Tribune and read this, “Orchid: To Niles City Council for voting unanimously to rescind its ban on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, and other oil and natural gas operations; and especially to Councilman Steve Papalas for so magnanimously apologizing for hastily passing the inappropriate legislation.”
Legislation to protect the citizens of Niles inappropriate? Absolutely, for corporate tools like Editor Robinson. Its profits before people with his brand of conservatism. He’s the kind of corporate lemming that feels corporations should be able to pollute all the air and water they want. These kinds of toadies think it is the duty of humans to morph into some kind of a subhuman with gills if the air becomes too polluted by corporations. Morphed people could them crawl into the water and be safe until a corporation comes along and pollutes the water.
Did Editor Robinson and the Niles City Council miss the study by Won-Young Kim, a researcher at Columbia University that was published in the Journal of Geophysical Research? It stated “A single fracking wastewater well triggered 167 earthquakes in and around Youngstown, Ohio, during a single year of operation.” I guess they also missed all the problems the residents of Westwood Lake Park in Weatherfield Township, Ohio are having because they live near fracking wells. I guess they missed the 2010 New York Times article how in 2008 Pittsburgh had to stop taking drinking water from the Monongahela River due to high levels of radioactivity from the practice that caused our earthquakes. I guess they also missed the latest finding that fracking leaks 9% of methane into the atmosphere making it far worse for the climate than coal. I could go on and on with examples but for some reason all these facts pointing out fracking problems were ignored. The half a dozen commentators to Trib.com on the article of Niles City Council rescinding their fracking ban all suggest Niles City Council sold out for cash. I don’t know if that is true but something is amiss.
Vindy.com only received one comment about Niles City Council rescinding. It came from UticaShale and said, “Yes, the brains that drained are returning to the Valley.” UticaShale has made over 616 comments mostly attacking our valley and supporting drilling. UticaShale calls people like me who are concerned about the dangers of fracking to our children and community “Frackpots.” He has also said, “Looks like all the fractivist need to get out-of-town now so we can begin to drill baby drill!” He has claimed he is an engineer from out West who works in the energy industry. He constantly rails against the “takers” in our country. He is an out-of-state carpetbagger who is here to “take” all he can for his gas/oil Robber Baron masters. They have sent him here to “Drill baby drill.” He will of course run out of our area and hide and try to get out of any financial or environmental responsibility, when things go wrong as in the Gulf and the situation becomes “Spill baby spill.” UticaShale claims in the end the oil/gas companies “will prevail and drag this Third World city (he calls Youngstown, Yuktown) into high-tech energy superiority, kicking and screaming.” He calls those of us who oppose him and the oil/gas companies “economic terrorist” because we stand in the way of making the rich richer at the expense of our children, our community and our health. I’m proud to be an economic terrorist! Put it on my tombstone!
The Warren Tribune Chronicle’s article on Niles City Council rescinding their fracking ban has an interesting statement in it from a fracking supporter. Dave Bishoff of Oak Forest Drive spoke in support of fracking, citing possible economic gains available to Niles residents as a result of the oil and gas industry. He attended an informational roundtable Sept. 9 hosted by council on the subject. “I came away impressed that there are regulations in place and steps being taken that will protect both the citizens and the environment,” Bishoff told the packed chamber. “I agree that a compromise can be reached where the neighborhoods can be protected, but we can benefit from the economic prosperity of this.” I guess Bishoff is more interested in money then he is in listening to the fracking nightmare woes of his fellow county citizens in the nearby Westwood Lake Park in Weatherfield Township, Ohio. I have a news flash Mr.Bishoff will also want to ignore. Unless you are already rich and own lots of acres the oil/gas companies have no use for you. Mr. Bishoff do you own a new car dealership, race horses and a stable? Do you own a heavy equipment and hauling company? Do you own a luxury inn resort and country club? If not you are out of luck. The three people in my region that either have fracking wells or are storing fracking brine already owned the things I mentioned. You see, Mr. Bishoff it is only a case of the rich getting richer. If these fracking enterprises fail and poison us all these three local fracking barons can afford to pick up and move and to Hell with the rest of us.
I must say I was quite shocked this week when I saw the heading of an editorial by Editor Robinson. I could not believe he was calling for more regulations for a corporation. Upon reading the article my shock ended and it all made sense. Editor Robinson was talking about putting more regulations on an industry that was trying to make our planet cleaner. The editor was complaining that the windmill industry that generates clean energy was responsible for killing over 60 Eagles who has flown into the blades. The editor prefers filthy, dirty and polluting industry like coal, oil and gas. I don’t recall him caring about all the birds or wildlife that were killed in oil spills in the Gulf or from the tanker EXXON Valdez. I guess Editor Robinson’s hatred of clean green energy is that it is boring. The news world does have that pattern that says “if it bleeds it leads.” That would explain why dirty energy with all of its dangers to our planet is much more exciting to a newsman. Maybe, I was mistaken by saying Editor Robinson is a creepy, soulless, callous, corporate tool, sociopath. Perhaps, he is just a guy who loves reporting exciting news. If asked to wager I’d bet on creepy, soulless, callous, corporate tool, sociopath.
One of the best young singer/songwriters around:
Brett Dennen: “Ain’t No Reason”
“I am not an editor of a newspaper and shall always try to do right and be good so that God will not make me one.” ~ Mark Twain