Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Bush's Gutting of Safety Rules Preceded Utah Mine Collapse


The trapping of six miners in a Utah coal mine collapse is the latest coal industry disaster to occur since George W. Bush took office. Since 2000, Bush has cut funding for mine safety enforcement by $15 million and stacked the Mine Safety and Health Administration with representatives of corporate interests.

Coal mining deaths have increased sharply in the past few years. 2006 was the deadliest year in a decade for coal miners.

As the AFL-CIO notes, 47 coal miners were killed on the job last year, a 210 percent increase over 2005, when 22 coal miners died on the job. 2006 was marked by several major disasters, including a Jan. 2 explosion that killed 12 coal miners in Sago Mine in West Virginia.

Although times are perilous for coal miners, it's a different story for America's coal companies. For example, 2005 was a record year for revenue and profits for St. Louis–based Peabody Energy Corp., the world's largest private-sector coal producer. In 2005, Peabody recorded revenues of $4.64 billion, up about 28 percent from 2004.

As points out, the "Bush administration has stacked (the Mine Safety and Health Administration) with former coal managers who have unashamedly tailored the agency’s policies to meet the profit needs of the operators."


cwilcox said...

Surprise surprise! Why do you always blame George Bush for the problems in this country? Oh wait, it's because, like this example, nearly all of our problems are directly attributable to him. My God. I can not believe that there is a soul on the planet who still supports this guy. Greed must be a powerful thing.

Anonymous said...

One must also wonder if murray energy was using Illegals. Today news is out that three of the six miners are from Mexico. This would supprise no one with Murrays' labor track record

Anonymous said...

seems the logical conclution if he's the one that gutted the regs so his corp. giants can stuff more money in their pockets and his.

There is not one good thing that I've found that's good about this administration.

Anonymous said...

over 300 citations since 2004 comes out to about one every three days. Don't think I would want this Bob Murray looking out for my well being.

Marc McDonald said...

Hi Red Hog,
Thanks for stopping by.
>>>I can not believe that there is
>>>a soul on the planet who still
>>>supports this guy.

What's scary is that, here in Texas, Bush supporters are still common.

Anonymous said...

WTF??? Why bring up Peabody Energy's record profits? If you look them up they are also the safest coal mining company in the country. I own some of their stock, and the only reason why is because they have figured out that being safe is PROFITABLE. Bringing your workers home safe every night is money in the bank. Why do you think the UMW have such a hard time unionizing Peabody mines? Because they pay well and provide a safe working environment. What else do you want?

After all this is a George Bush's fault anyhow.

Ron Southern said...

Since it is evident that we won't kill him, since we have waited until it almost wouldn't matter if we did, we'll just have to let him keep killing miners.

I don't know how many greedy people there really are, but it is clear that they are the ones in charge. Who'd we expect, Joan Baez?

Anonymous said...

>>>If you look them up they are
>>>also the safest coal mining
>>>company in the country.

That's a bit like saying Basra is the "safest city in Iraq." It's all relative.

>>they have figured out that being
>>safe is PROFITABLE.

You don't understand capitalism. The goal is profitability. These corporations do not give a shit about worker safety. That simply doesn't factor into their equations.

>>>After all this is a George
>>>Bush's fault anyhow.

Uh, actually it is. He gutted mine safety regulations and stacked the mine safety regulatory agencies with executives from the mining industry. Is it any wonder that coal mining deaths are on the rise?