Monday, April 12, 2010
Massey Energy's Upper Big Branch Mine Explosion
The Massey Energy’s Upper Big Branch mine explosion last week was the worst coalmine disaster in the last 40 years. Twenty-nine miners died.
Massey’s CEO, Don Blankenship, at his Labor Day anti-union rally last year, attacked the Mine Safety and Health Administration, declaring that MSHA “seeks power over coal miners.”
In the same speech he ridiculed and called the efforts of both “Washington politicians” and local elected officials who have tried to make sure mines are safe “as silly as global warming.”
This is also the same man who used his positions on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Mining Association to advance his theory that Global warming is a farce, spending one million dollars to put together a huge rally and rock concert last September in Holden, WV, starring such right-wing kooks as John Rich, Ted Nugent, Hank Williams, Jr., and Fox News celebrity Sean Hannity.
It has been reported that at the time of the explosion Massey was contesting hundreds of violations worth over one million dollars.