Saturday, September 24, 2011

What You Don't KNow May Kill You


What you don't know may kill you -- and thousands of others. Perhaps one way to avoid the problem of aging Americans is to kill off vast numbers before they reach old age. How? It's being done by polluting most of America's major waterways and aquifers with a cocktail of poisons, mostly colorless, odorless and tasteless that are used in the production of natural gas in an operation called fracking.

I've seen a number of problem revealing documentaries in the last couple of years and I've been outraged at Wal-mart and Monsanto and other industries. But I have never been so horrified as I was watching Gasland made by Josh Fox which shows that natural gas [advertized as "the clean fuel"] companies, when the boom began were unilaterally exempted from oversight by the EPA in a sneaky little law master-minded by Dick Cheney [only recently, at that time, retired from Haliburton, one of the biggest natural gas producers. The fracking process puts a toxic cocktail of over 500 chemicals into waterways and aquifers that affect people in 32 states. People near these gas wells find that the water coming out of their faucets not only stinks, tastes terrible but BURNS -- literally burns if a match is struck to it coming out of the tap. There were scenes in several homes where that was demonstrated.

Not surprisingly the people who have used that water are sick. Their pets lose their hair and die. Imagine living in a house where the water in your pipes could catch fire! The industry is essentially unregulated, they have deep enough pockets that when people hire lawyers and complain, they are paid a bit, big plastic cisterns are provided for them so they can buy water elsewhere and truck it to their homes and farms. But where does that water come from? Utter and complete disregard for the environment is so mind boggling it makes me feel sick at heart. We can see the pollution that causes smog. We cannot see the underground pollution that ruins our water. The industry is so unregulated managers at many levels do not know what is happening, probably only a few chemists have any idea how dangerous the stuff they send by the tanker -- dozens of tankers -- to start each well is so toxic. The workers who handle it are not protected. Over and over again in the history of industrialization companies have done whatever it takes, disregarding both workers and those downstream, downwind, i harm's way. We have the EPA and it has been utterly declawed in this instance and is being gutted in may other instances by funding cuts. As a country, as a voting populace people are essentially committing murder and suicide in utter ignorance. Thank you, Josh Fox! It's a lonely voice but I'm glad someone has done something. It's a start.

2 comments:

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

June -- I think I saw the video you are talking about. I too was sick after watching. I think we should realize that we do not live in a democracy anymore -- it is a capitalist country led by people that truly don't care what happens to anyone young or old. I am perplexed about how one lives in a safe environment anymore -- it is so complicated -- and that is the way the capitalists want to keep it. I could go on but I won't -- Good post -- barbara

June Calender said...

You are exactly right, Barbara, this is purely a capitalist country. I keep thinking of the movie Wall Street and Gordon Gecko's "greed is good" speech.