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Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Andrea Mitchell has about as much business calling herself a journalist as any resident of an Alzheimer's patient facility. Today viewers of MSNBC got to watch the wife of Alan Greenspan, one of the architects of deregulation for Wall Street and everybody else's financial problems, lob softball pitches to T. Boone Pickens, the wrinkled old energy billionaire behind the race to poison our water and air through natural gas drilling. Mitchell let Pickens lie his sorry butt off without once challenging his prevarications.

When Ms. Mitchell asked Pickens about the chemicals being used when fracking for natural gas, Pickens said that he has personally fracked 800,000 wells out west without ever polluting any drinking water. Personally? Really?

The old bovine excrement artist might be a geologist but he's not superman and he might look like Methuselah but he's not. If Pickens successfully fracked 10 wells a day -- again, personally?, really? -- it would take over 200 years for him to reach 800,000 wells.

Poobah Pickens also said that the only complaints were coming from eastern Pennsylvania, where I live. Obviously, neither Pickens nor Andrea Mitchell saw the Academy Award nominated documentary GASLAND by Josh Fox. If they did see it, they don't care about truth -- which is no surprise. The film maker documented more problems in the western USA, where the mighty Pickens drilled like John Henry hammered -- 800,000 wells, personally! -- than in Pennsylvania.

What information is available to anyone with half a brain and a few minutes of time to do some research is this: in 2005 Dick Cheney wrote what is called the "Halliburton loophole" in the the United States energy bill that year. It allows the natural gas industry to operate outside the regulations of the Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act. So, since 2005 the game has changed.

Fracking has been around since the 1940s. Then it was rightly called hydrofracturing -- water being hydro. Now it should be called chemofracturing -- because benzene and many other known cancer-causing chemical are the biggest part of what's making the drilling dangerous.

T. Boone knows this but he won't say it because it doesn't fit with his self-mythologizing, in which he saves America from the terrorist Arabs. (Oh yeah, he said being against natural gas is supporting terrorism and Mitchell looked very concerned.) Is T Boone willing to return to the pre-Cheney protections, when presumably he personally drilled the bulk of those 800,000 wells? Andrea Mitchell sure didn't ask him that.

As far as the rest of the blather between these two elitists, take a look at the recent Cornell University study that lays it out -- as an energy source, natural gas is dirtier than coal, and that's pretty damn dirty.

How could that be? T. Boone Pickens says natural gas clean. And he's John Henry. Andrea Mitchell? Who knows what she is other than a flack for the wealthy one per cent who are willing to poison all the rest of us to make their bank balances bigger.

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