Rush Limbaugh’s idiotic and patently false remarks aobut progressive groups would make for good humor, except that people believe this shameless harlot who dedicates his life to the service of corporate greed and gratuitous attacks on progressives (or even liberals).
Limbaugh has crammed his foot even farther down his mouth than usual a few times lately. Two examples: <a href=”http://rawstory.com/rs/2010/0429/rush-limbaugh-hints-oil-rig-explosion-environmental-terrorism/”>He blamed environmentalists for the tragic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico</a>, and he <a href=”http://wvablue.com/diary/5745/limbaugh-blames-union-for-disaster-at-nonunion-massey-mine”>blamed the United Mine Workers of America for failing to head off the 29-fatality disaster at Massey Energy’s Upper Big Branch coal mine in West Virginia</a>.
Let’s look at the Massey case. Talk about blaming the victim: Early in his career as CEO of Massey, Don Blankenship broke the back of the UMWA by refusing to honor the industry agreement and demanding that the union bargain individually with Massey’s 14 subsidiaries. This was 1984, during the notoriously anti-union presidency of Ronald Reagan.
Thus, Upper Big Branch, like many Massey mines, is non-union. The union has tried to organize there repeatedly. And the government has repeatedly cited the mine for safety violations, closing it 61 times in the 15 months preceding the explosion.
Now, the really interesting part: According to <a href=”http://www.washingtonspectator.org/message.cfm?msg=0notsubs1&CGI_script_name=/articles/20100515kingcoalkilled.cfm&PageName=%2Farticles%2F20100515kingcoalkilled.cfm”>”How King Coal Killed the Union Man,” by Lauri Lebo, published in the May 15 issue of the Washington Spectator</a> union mines are far, far safer than nonunion You need to be a subscriber to read the article, so let me summarize some of the findings:
<li>254 of the 284 miners killed in the US since 2002 were in non-union mines
</li><li>25 percent of American miners belong to the UMWA, but union members accounted for only 11 percent of fatalities
</li><li>Safety inspectors at union mines have the power to shut down mines operating unsafely; in non-union mines, the inspectors are absent, and workers can be fired for calling for inspection
</li><li>Even without an on-site inspector, Upper Big Branch was cited by the Mine safety and Health Administration for safety violations 639 times from january1 2009 to April1 2010, but Massey uses a funky procedural maneuver to block meaningful sanctions
How does Limbaugh sleep at night? He is a propagandist, not a journalist</li>