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1 freetoken  Mon, Feb 17, 2014 7:20:07pm

I notice the author calls coal a “black rock” instead of the more detailed understanding of what coal is: fossils.

But then again most of West Virginia are probably in denial about the coal being fossils hundreds of millions of years old to begin with, so no wonder they are in denial of the rest too.

2 freetoken  Mon, Feb 17, 2014 7:21:23pm

Good photo set.

3 nines09  Mon, Feb 17, 2014 8:20:50pm

That’s how peasants are treated. A job is a hard thing to come by and a good paying job harder in the sticks. So water flows downhill, and where is the outrage of the fish and game folks? Add in the Fracking going on in West Virginia and it’s a rape of historic scope. When you got nothing, anything looks good. Pure local economics and a checkerboard history of small country folks fighting the corporations for years and getting nothing from anyone else except more beatings. Matewan.

A more intense read Here.
Pennsylvania had a group who was also Railroaded.
That was courage stomped out of existence. You would never want to be a miner. Trust me. Today it’s no better than massive destruction and run out the back with the money on the backs of the little folks. Don’t piss on the little guys. They have no choice. It’s reality and nothing better for 7 hollers over and it’s going downhill there too. Walk in them shoes. The industry is criminal, and the people are fucked six ways to Sunday.

4 Norbrook  Mon, Feb 17, 2014 8:27:58pm

The truly sad note in that article is that even after all that destruction, pollution, and job losses mountain top removal is causing, there’s only (at best) another 20-30 years before all the coal is gone.

So today’s young people in WV are going to face a future where the only major industry is going to be gone, and all they’ll be left with is a wasteland.

5 wheat-dogghazi  Mon, Feb 17, 2014 8:30:24pm

re: #1 freetoken

I notice the author calls coal a “black rock” instead of the more detailed understanding of what coal is: fossils.

But then again most of West Virginia are probably in denial about the coal being fossils hundreds of millions of years old to begin with, so no wonder they are in denial of the rest too.

Science teacher mode on …

He’s correct. Coal is a sedimentary rock, or metamorphic rock in the case of anthracite.

Fossils are usually bone or other formerly living materials turned into stone, for example, the Lucy skeleton or petrified wood. In that sense, coal is not a fossil, even though it was formed from layers of dead plant material laid down hundred of millions of years ago.

Fossils don’t burn too well. Coal is carboniferous. It burns really well.

…. Science teacher mode off.

But you’re probably right about some of the locals not appreciating the age and formation of coal.

Appalachia is America’s continental Third World “country.” These folks signed away their mineral rights years and years ago, unaware that the big coal companies could then come in, force them off their land, and tear down everything to get to the coal underneath. The residents get very little in return, compared to what they’ve lost. It’s exploitation, pure and simple.

6 freetoken  Mon, Feb 17, 2014 10:21:42pm

re: #5 wheat-dogghazi

Of course it is a rock. But the carbon in coal is the remains of once living organisms.

“Fossil” in its original meaning was anything dug up, then developed the meaning of any remains of something from a past age. That’s why phrases like “fossil water” are used today.

7 wheat-dogghazi  Tue, Feb 18, 2014 4:44:24am

re: #6 freetoken

Sorry, the science teacher in me is a stickler for precise language when referring to scientifical things, like “theory,” which most creationists either willfully or unwittingly misuse to suggest “there are no facts here, only unproved ideas, except for ours, of course.”

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