July 21, 2009
Dark as a dungeon
El Cabrero has a feeling that controversies about coal, climate change, and mountaintop removal are going to get more and more heated in West Virginia.
I wouldn't be surprised if these issues bring out some of the same kinds of responses here that the civil rights movement did in the deep south in the 1950s and 1960s.
I'm not saying that the issues are similar or morally equivalent. But I'd bet a bottle of wine that the patterns will be similar. As the saying goes, history doesn't repeat itself but it rhymes.
First, the powers that be here will resist any climate change legislation or regulations of mining with the same intensity that those in the south resisted desegregation.
Second, state political leaders will try to outdo each other in positioning themselves as defenders of the status quo--even some of the ones who know better.
Third, it wouldn't surprise me if somebody gets killed. If that happens, it will probably be at the hands of people inflamed by over-heated rhetoric.
Fourth, when it's all over, people will wish they'd done things differently.
I'd really like to be wrong about all of this.
PAYING FOR HEALTH CARE REFORM. Here are some options by way of the WV Center on Budget and Policy.
WHAT RECOVERY. Robert Reich thinks this recession isn't like the others and the recovery won't look like others either.
MINIMUM WAGE. Here's yours truly holding forth on the coming minimum wage increase.
THE BLOB--for real.
WHILE WE'RE AT IT, here's an item on the attack of the giant jellyfish.
GOAT ROPE ADVISORY LEVEL: ELEVATED