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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
"Under my plan, the cost of electricity would necessarily skyrocket" - Barack Obama

Can this country really afford anymore of this yanker's "plans"?

A move by the Environmental Protection Agency to revoke the long-standing permits for a mammoth coal mine in West Virginia sends a strong signal that President Obama plans to implement key parts of his agenda even though newly empowered Republicans can block his plans in Congress.

In the aftermath of the November elections, many political pundits predicted that the once-unchecked Obama legislative machine would turn it's energies to federal rulemaking as a way to circumvent Republicans on Capitol Hill. And the EPA’s decision last week suggests that those forecasts were spot-on.

Much to the consternation of the West Virginia delegation in Congress, the coal industry, and the working people of the Mountain State, the agency took the unprecedented step of revoking a mining permit that it had issued four years ago to Arch Coal’s Spruce No. 1 Mine in Logan County, West Virginia.

The revocation prompted unusually harsh responses from West Virginia's two Democratic Senators.

Sen. Jay Rockefeller sent the president a letter which read, in part: "I am writing to express my outrage with the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) decision to veto a rigorously reviewed and lawfully issued permit at the Spruce Number 1 Mine in Logan County, West Virginia. This action not only affects this specific permit, but needlessly throws other permits into a sea of uncertainty at a time of great economic distress."

Sen. Joe Manchin issued a statement which appeared to mock the EPA's permitting process.

"According to the EPA, it doesn't matter if you did everything right, if you followed all of the rules,” Manchin wrote. “Why? They just change the rules."

There are many critics of Appalachian surface mining, called “mountaintop removal.” The practice uses heavy explosives to expose seams of coal in the ridges of Southern West Virginia, Eastern Kentucky and Western Virginia. After the demolition crews flatten out the ridge tops into plateaus.

Critics claim that by changing the topography of the ridges of the coalfields, the practice is robbing mountaineers of their heritage. Environmentalists also claim that the rock and rubble from the mines kills fish, wildlife and pollutes water.

Indeed, it was a violation of the Clean Water Act, that prompted the EPA to revoke the permit at the Spruce No. 1 Mine.

"The agency took this action because this proposed mine would use destructive and unsustainable mining practices that jeopardize the health of Appalachian communities and clean water on which they depend,” read the agency’s statement.

The coal industry defends the mining practices and the reclamation efforts that they say leaves usable land for development in the cramped hollows of Appalachia. But the central argument against the EPA’s move is about jobs.

"It's just the arrogance of the EPA,” said Bill Raney of the West Virginia Coal Association. “The people in Logan County want the permit. It's important to the company. It's critically important to Logan County."

The environmental concerns over surface mining were well-known when the EPA first issued the permit in 2007. Since that time, Arch Coal has made millions of dollars in infrastructure investments in the mine, perhaps the largest ever in the region --investments which are now threatened by the EPA permit revocation.

" I don't think it's the American way," says Brad Blakeman, an advisor to former President George W. Bush. "I don’t think we rule retro-actively when businesses invested a lot of money, legally, in a permitting system that was certainly above board and they followed every rule and procedure that EPA had at the time and now to be told after-the-fact that this is now improper or legal, I think is wrong.”

Blakeman says it sends a chilling message to other industries about the power of the Federal government. He suggests that it will be up to the other two branches of our government , the courts and the Congress to decide whether the EPA's revocation of this permit , and perhaps others, stands.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/201...ackdown-sends-message-industry/#ixzz1BMHS0Yk8
 

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He screwed milions in the Gulf by shutting down oil production, now he's screwing the coal miners. I wonder how long they'll blame Bush when energy prices triple and gas is $4 dollars a gallon.

It would be nice to hear some good news for a change...
 

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Probably less than 1% of Americans are hard-core Greens, but that small minority is the tail wagging the dog. All of us are at the mercy of the politicians who pander to that powerful group. We need a common sense environmental group to rise up in reasonable opposition to these nuts who care nothing about the people their whims impact. :down:
 

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Unfortunately, that is an oxymoron Tex. Logic, reason, common sense, none available.
As a medical person, I think of every problem and solution as a risk/benefit ratio. Take amalgam fillings - very small risk/very high benefit (across a population) makes the procedure worthwhile. The same should be true of a bridge that impacts a minnow in a creek: very small risk to humans ( would the absence of the species really make us all die?)/very big benefit, therefore we ought to build the bridge if we need it. The EPA does not work like that. Their ratio is that if there is ANY risk, regardless of the benefit, they shut down the activity. The common sense I was referring to was to get back to a realistic risk/benefit ratio in our environmental planning. What we need is an environmental Tea Party. :cheers:
 

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How could anybody, right or left, not have a problem with this ? This sets a precedent for any hope of recovery. Those hurt most by this are the poor and lower middle class, directly. It is high time to obliterate the power and force behind this agency. They have become a monstrosity... far from original intent.
 

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Take amalgam fillings - very small risk/very high benefit (across a population) makes the procedure worthwhile.
The last time I let a dentist talk me into replacing an old silver filling with one of those new fangled ones I ended up with a root canal two weeks later. I think I'll keep the old silver ones until my teeth fall out. :laughing:
 

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On one hand I agree that the community and the state could use the jobs and tax revenue. On the other, is the EPA has been holding open negotiations with the company for over a year. The EPA’s stance is below:
EPA’s final determination on the Spruce Mine comes after discussions with the company spanning more than a year failed to produce an agreement that would lead to a significant decrease in impacts to the environment and Appalachian communities. The action prevents the mine from disposing of the waste into streams unless the company identifies an alternative mining design that would avoid irreversible damage to water quality and meets the requirements of the law. Despite EPA’s willingness to consider alternatives, Mingo Logan did not offer any new proposed mining configurations in response to EPA’s Recommended Determination.
The mining company had the opportunity to propose an alternative means to dispose of the waste and chose not to do so. Where is the innovation? Why are they just throwing their hands up in the air and giving up?
 

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You know the answer to that... it's always cost. Advance the cause by creating a victim... and inventing new compliance laws that require 'innovation".
 

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You know the answer to that... it's always cost. Advance the cause by creating a victim... and inventing new compliance laws that require 'innovation".
How could you possibly be against innovation? Why do we have to choose between safe drinking water for the people benefitting from the mine and the industry's desires? It was the same issue with deep water drilling. Show me a sound engineering solution which can prevent leaks even after a single failure and start drilling. As soon as the drilling/oil company decided saving a few dollars was more valuable than drilling safely they gave up their right to drill.

As most of you know I design flight controls for airplanes. Every day I deal with a literal mountain of regulations. Each one of those regulations has been inacted to make it safe to fly. In the Randian world view those regulations are not required and the market would speak. Ideally as a consumer you would know which planes are bad designs and would pick a flight with a well designed plane. Would you still fly? What if they changed planes on you? Would you still fly? Regulations are not required for everything, but the idea of no regulations is just as insane. IMO a true capitalist will work to improve their design or process at all times.
 

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How could you possibly be against innovation? Why do we have to choose between safe drinking water for the people benefitting from the mine and the industry's desires? It was the same issue with deep water drilling. Show me a sound engineering solution which can prevent leaks even after a single failure and start drilling. As soon as the drilling/oil company decided saving a few dollars was more valuable than drilling safely they gave up their right to drill.

As most of you know I design flight controls for airplanes. Every day I deal with a literal mountain of regulations. Each one of those regulations has been inacted to make it safe to fly. In the Randian world view those regulations are not required and the market would speak. Ideally as a consumer you would know which planes are bad designs and would pick a flight with a well designed plane. Would you still fly? What if they changed planes on you? Would you still fly? Regulations are not required for everything, but the idea of no regulations is just as insane. IMO a true capitalist will work to improve their design or process at all times.
I understand your point, but it's flawed in regard to free market principles. Here's a counter argument.

Even with all the regulations involving aircraft manufacture, operation, and maintanence, planes still crash, people still die.

Suppose there were no regulations regarding the above. What would be the outcome for, say Boeing and AirBus, if Boeing started cutting back on quality control and Boeing planes started falling out of the sky? How many pilots would continue to fly Boeing planes? How many people would get on a plane knowing it was a Boeing? Would the subcontractors produce less quality controls to save bucks. Would they be willing to take a chance that they would be sued out of existence if the cause of the deaths were attributed to faulty controls and airplanes of a certain brand? Would you, as a designer? And what would the public do, knowing that AirBus's planes are more expensive, but don't crash because they made the best quality they could, regardless of cost?

Now, I'm not proposing that no regulations are the best scenario, but there has to be common sense regulations that produce a standard, and let the market decide who wins or fails based on that.
 

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I understand your point, but it's flawed in regard to free market principles. Here's a counter argument.

Even with all the regulations involving aircraft manufacture, operation, and maintanence, planes still crash, people still die.

Suppose there were no regulations regarding the above. What would be the outcome for, say Boeing and AirBus, if Boeing started cutting back on quality control and Boeing planes started falling out of the sky? How many pilots would continue to fly Boeing planes? How many people would get on a plane knowing it was a Boeing? Would the subcontractors produce less quality controls to save bucks. Would they be willing to take a chance that they would be sued out of existence if the cause of the deaths were attributed to faulty controls and airplanes of a certain brand? Would you, as a designer? And what would the public do, knowing that AirBus's planes are more expensive, but don't crash because they made the best quality they could, regardless of cost?

Now, I'm not proposing that no regulations are the best scenario, but there has to be common sense regulations that produce a standard, and let the market decide who wins or fails based on that.
Good points.

Coal mining is a very different than airplanes or other consumer goods. Lets focus on that. Since the consumer for coal is energy companies and energy companies then use multiple sources of energy to power a given area; as a user of power what control do I have over this market? The energy company will buy the cheapest power available therefore the coal companies are incentivised to cut as many corners as possible. Then they hope that consumers do not get pissed at the power company for purchasing the coal. Even if my power company kept buying power from the coal company my only recourse is to move. Then someone else moves in and uses ~ the same amount of power I did. From the perspective of the power company there is no economic incentive. Am I missing something? Without an economic incentive, IMO regulations are required to create an economic incentive.

That brings us to a basic idea on which we may disagree. I think a regulation is required. My guess is that most of you do not. Thoughts?
 

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How could you possibly be against innovation? Why do we have to choose between safe drinking water for the people benefitting from the mine and the industry's desires? It was the same issue with deep water drilling. Show me a sound engineering solution which can prevent leaks even after a single failure and start drilling. As soon as the drilling/oil company decided saving a few dollars was more valuable than drilling safely they gave up their right to drill.

As most of you know I design flight controls for airplanes. Every day I deal with a literal mountain of regulations. Each one of those regulations has been inacted to make it safe to fly. In the Randian world view those regulations are not required and the market would speak. Ideally as a consumer you would know which planes are bad designs and would pick a flight with a well designed plane. Would you still fly? What if they changed planes on you? Would you still fly? Regulations are not required for everything, but the idea of no regulations is just as insane. IMO a true capitalist will work to improve their design or process at all times.
I don't know much about this type of coal mining, but open pit mining doesn't seem like a water intensive process to me. It makes me wonder how much water we are talking about. Also, there are apparently many such mines in the area. What do they do with their water? It's obviously not so bad that the locals don't want to live with it. Again, the question is how reasonable are the EPA's requirements? Are they asking for 100% pure water (unreasonable) or are they trying to keep the pollution to a reasonable level? Mining, like oil, is an important industry, but a dirty one. We must be willing to accept a reasonable level of environmental damage from these processes while striving to be as clean as possible.
 

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That brings us to a basic idea on which we may disagree. I think a regulation is required. My guess is that most of you do not. Thoughts?
Regulation is as much a requirement for our side as it is yours. To even suggest otherwise is baseless... -baseless. Our objection is to over regulation to promote an ideological stance by forcing industries to "innovate" to the point of failure. We have no idea of what "dumping" means by the EPA. You saw the word "dumping" and automatically assumed that was a bad thing. What if "dumping" meant the dirt run off from the piles dug up and dumped in a row ? What if the runoff from those piles of dirt -is the EPA's complaint ? -And, what if the EPA's complaint has nothing to do with anything dangerous, but rather, due to an ideology of "forced innovation" ?

Who could possibly have a relevant argument to the aspirations and calls for innovation... and have a spits worth of merit ?

There is a reason that there seems to be absolutely no mention of what is being "dumped"... as one would imagine if it was a public safety concern. After all... people go to prison for these sorts of safety violations and are made examples of to further the cause and merit of "innovation".
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I've had a change of heart.. the EPA is correct. In fact, I am going to start siding with the left on issues. I'm convinced that they are actually on the right track. We need to insure that nothing bad can ever happen, by producing energy. Obama has a plan, and he has a mandate. Let him implement his plan fully, shut down the coal industry, drive energy prices through the roof, and de-develop the US. This is what is takes for the necessary thinning of the herd.

I just hope all the courts start siding with them as well..
 

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First came this



Now for the innovation



No regulation required:laughing:
 

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:rolling:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
How could you possibly be against innovation? Why do we have to choose between safe drinking water for the people benefitting from the mine and the industry's desires? It was the same issue with deep water drilling. Show me a sound engineering solution which can prevent leaks even after a single failure and start drilling. As soon as the drilling/oil company decided saving a few dollars was more valuable than drilling safely they gave up their right to drill.
Spot on. :thumbsup: These guys have probably not done any R&D in 20+ years. If we are going to take a chance on producing an ecological disaster, just for the oil industry to profit, they don't deserve to exist in this country. It's high time someone put the hammer to the nail.

As most of you know I design flight controls for airplanes. Every day I deal with a literal mountain of regulations. Each one of those regulations has been inacted to make it safe to fly. In the Randian world view those regulations are not required and the market would speak. Ideally as a consumer you would know which planes are bad designs and would pick a flight with a well designed plane. Would you still fly? What if they changed planes on you? Would you still fly? Regulations are not required for everything, but the idea of no regulations is just as insane. IMO a true capitalist will work to improve their design or process at all times.
:agree: Thanks to innovation and regulation, we don't have air crashes in this country. Now if we get to the point of planes crashing again, well it's time for them to lose the right to have an airline industry in this country. We can't afford for people to take such risks in the US just so the airline industry can profit from it.

:cheers:
 

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I'm still blown away that he has an apparent knowledge of Ayn Rand's ideological writings... and still holds the beliefs he portrays. I've yet to meet anybody that has read her writings and maintains a lick of liberalism (or socialistic democratic... as they are identical) within them.
 
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