March 08, 2012

A voice from gasland

The Spousal Unit recently made a trip to northern West Virginia, which is ground zero for the Marcellus Shale natural gas boom, which is transforming the face of several rural counties in the state. While there, she came upon a flier warning landowners not to be taken to the cleaners by drillers.

The flier quotes the CEO of gas giant Chesapeake Energy as saying

"I don't like to buy acreage for fair price, I like to go in and put a play together where we put our army of 5,000 landman to work, and we are buying it lease by lease for a very inefficient cost average to the rest of the industry to try and replicate and we make it a transaction where there is not a public market, it's us and the landowner and we're gonna most generally going to get the benefit of that side of the transaction, so think about again, every time we move we are buying acreage worth 5 to 10 times what we pay"

Sounds like the modern version of coal company land grabs at the turn of the 20th century. What was that saying about those who don't learn from the past?

March 06, 2012

Two kinds of people

El Cabrero is not a big monitor of right wing media, but I've been enjoying the flack Rush Limbaugh has been getting over his over the top comments last week. Those remarks, of course, weren't the first such to emerge from the Whackadoodle oracle. Here are some others.

There's been a lot of talk on the web about the right wing war on women. Whether such war talk is right on target or not--and it doesn't seem all that far off the mark to me--it does seem to be the case that some people on that end of the political spectrum seem to have an undue amount of anxiety over the thought that people who have uteri are inadequately supervised.

I manage to get through most days without worrying about things like that.

It reminds me of conversations I used to have with certain friends in which we concluded

1. that there are two kinds of people in the world, to wit, those who have enough real problems and those who do not;

2. that the latter group is the cause of many of the problems in the world.

March 05, 2012

Working overtime

The weather gods have been really busy around here lately. I mean, jeez, going from tornado to flood to snowstorm in barely over a weekend is pretty impressive. I have a feeling extreme weather events are going to be on the menu from here on out, even in the land of climate change denial.

THE STATE OF THE STATES...could use a little work.

OCCUPY this.

MY LATEST RANT is here. Topic: prison overcrowding. Somebody has to feed the right wing trolls that lurk around the Gazette website.