Apr 12, 2010
In the three years since the last big coal mine disaster, coal mine operators have been assessed 113 million dollars in fines for systematically and knowingly violating safety laws. But they hardly paid a dollar – only seven% of all fines they owed.
The government says there was nothing it could do about it, since the coal companies tie it up in court.
Hogwash! The government, under both Democrats and Republicans, had no trouble finding a way around legalities when it came to bailing out the big banks it said were “too big to fail.” There is always something government can do – if it wants!
The government could have put all of Massey Energy’s executives on trial for endangering public safety any time over the past three years. Now it could put them on trial for murder – any reasonable person would have known that conditions in Massey’s mines could lead to deaths.
The government lets Massey get away with murder because – in the words of that old miners’ song – it’s on the bosses’ side.