Thursday, February 02, 2006


The death toll continues in the West Virginia mines. Wednesday, two miners died in separate incidents.
The White House response to the tragedies was to appoint Richard Stickler, a former executive at a subsidiary of Massey Energy in West Virginia, to run the Mine Safety and Health Administration.  Under Stickler’s watch as coal company manager for the Beth Energy Mines, the worker injury rates were more than the national average. In his confirmation hearings, Mr. Stickler argues that federal mining regulations are adequate and there is no need for further mining legistlation.   The Massey Energy Company, Stickler’s past employer, owns the mine where 2 miners perished on January 19th of this year .
There needs to be an accounting. The Canadians saved 72 miners from death by adequately insuring that the miners had safety rooms to go to during a disaster. These rooms are not required in the United States. It is not surprising that there is so little concern for ordinary Americans from the federal government since this is the same Bush administration that ignored the perils of Hurricane Katrina to the extent that Secretary of State Condi Rice was shopping for shoes in New York when that disaster hit. No one, according to the Government Accounting Office, was in charge at the federal level for ensuring public safety before and after the hurricane.
Furthermore, there are no plans coming from the Bush administration for the 2006 hurricane season.  


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