Friday, November 19, 2010

That'll kill the Christmas spirit

AMCHornet wanted to hear me complaining and since I do that nearly every Friday, I am going to dedicate this post to her. She didn’t have anything in particular she wanted me to bitch about, so I’ve chosen to not do the 5 Things That Drive Me Crazy and instead focus on something that is really worth complaining about.

First of all, I must say, I work for a coal company so yes, my opinion is probably biased.

I live in West Virginia. West Virginia is coal country. You think people would know that by now? Yeah, well they don’t. People that have just moved here and holding protest meetings to try and shut down our mines. Why in the Hell would you move to coal country if you don’t like the fact that we do indeed mine? That’s like moving next to an airport and complaining about the noise.

Anyways, I learned yesterday that we lost our permit to mine. That means that right before Christmas, dozens of people are going to get laid off. Most of them were just hired in August when we obtained the permit. Some have been with us for years. In six months, I may not have a job.

This is in large part due to coal haters. Our mine was once shut down because environmentalists thought we were killing bugs in a pond. Bugs! Bugs were chosen over the livelihood of many employees. Real, breathing people with real families to take care of. I hit 1,000 bugs with my car while driving to work every day, but no one has ever tried to take my license.

People are always trying to find a way to get money from us and when they can’t, they protest. We pay for any damages we cause. We reclaim every site we mine. Then usually give it away. One place that we owned, we gave away and now a school, a fitness center, and a fair ground is there. Concerts are held there all summer long. Fairs are held there. My point? We don’t totally ruin the land.

We pay lots of money to buy the land we mine. Sometimes we buy the land and the houses that sit on it. Granted, the home owners have to then move, but they didn’t have to sell to us. And it’s not even those people, whose lives are uprooted and they have to start over that complain. No, it’s the neighbors that don’t like the noise of the coal trucks. They don’t like the dust that the trucks create. They don’t like when the ground shakes when we blast. Those are the top complaints.

Don’t move across the street for a coal mine and then complain about the noise.

If they don’t like the dust, they need to call the trucking companies (for we own no coal trucks) and complain to them.

By law, we are required to give them the option to complete a pre-blast survey. So that means, when we use a bunch of explosives to break the land, they are entitled to fill out the survey, have someone come assess their home and then if we cause any damage, we promptly fix it. And it’s the people who didn’t fill out the surveys that complain. I’d say they had a crack in their foundation before the blasting ever started and they are trying to get us to pay for it.

If these same people who attend every meeting about the coal companies would also attend every meeting about cutting down trees to build strip malls, putting up apartments for the college students everywhere you turn, removing our green earth to put in a parking lot, and gasoline and diesel fuel polluting our air I probably wouldn’t complain. But these people are focused on one thing and one thing only. Coal.

They don’t realize by them complaining about bugs and dust that they are actually causing many families to do without because their husband or wife has just been laid off. Kids may not get to even have much of a Christmas because parents have no idea how long it will be until they find a job again. I know even without children, I will lose a lot. Not to mention the co-workers that I’ve been with for years and have become like family to me.

My message to them? Just leave us alone! WE GIVE YOU ELECTRICITY FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!

Please don't unfollow me! :)


hed. said...

I wish our country wasn't so freaking polarized-there seems to be a complete lack of grey area anymore! So I'm going to my ten favorite bloggers and pleading with them to follow my new blog hed above water since I will be shutting down hed down under by the end of the year (details on my hdu blog). Stop by? <3


Peregrin said...

I work for a railroad. One morning this year an anti-war group was protesting outside the headquarters building. Because we haul coal.

If I were the confrontational sort, I'd ask if they thought this through. Generally we go to war for oil, not coal. And if we didn't haul the stuff, then it would go over the highways in trucks and electricity costs would more than double.

ANichols.Too said...

Those poor people, right before Christmas...heck, poor you, too! Five bucks says the haters have all sorts of nice gadgets powered by the electric your coal produces that they just "couldn't live without". It's like those people who say taxes are horrible but want the nice schools, roads, and such.... Ugh.

Good rant--and well presented points, too.

Bouncin' Barb said...

It's everywhere sweetie. People don't care about anyone else. They don't care if you have a Christmas. They don't care where there electricity comes from. They just want for themselves. West Va. has always been a coal mining state. My grandparents families worked them. And they were always poor too. Losing jobs, mines being closed. It's always something. My heart goes out to all of you. Not knowing is a bitch too.

Thisisme said...

I agree with Too. Extremely good rant, well thought out and very well put. THese people really do take the biscuit. It's going to mean real hardship to all those who are likely to lose their jobs. Not the same I know, but we live deep in the Devon countryside, and the townies move in and immediately start complaining about country traditions. Some even moan about the noise from the village church bells, and the cockerell that might be crowing. I get really angry that these move in and then start to moan, moan, moan!!

Jess said...

Well, I think this rant is completely justified. Some people just love to complain about anything and everything. Such is the life of a protestor. :P

amchornetgirl said...

KY is also coal country! I hear you, and feel your pain. I hope everything works out and you and your friends are able to keep your jobs. By the way, thanks for posting a rant for me! ;)

Tress said...

@Hed- I'm now a follower of Hed About Water :)

@Peregrin- OMG...that's so dumb! I guess I didn't even realize that the railroads would take heat for it, too. Jeeze.

@ANichols-I know! I bet you they are sitting at their computers or watching TV as we speak. Let them live by candle light for a month and we'll see who protests then.

@Barb- Thanks! Not knowing is pretty stressful. Everyone in the company has to pretty much watch what they spend, not buy any new cars, not move into a new house. I guess we know it going in, but when its something stupid that we are being laid off for, that's a whole different story.

@Thisisme-Thank you! Wow. It's one thing for locals to complain about something, but when outsiders come in and try to change things, its just plain stupid.

@Jess- Completely agree. Someone, somewhere is always bitching about something.

@AMC- Yeah! I think we have a couple of mines and/or offices in KY. And you are very welcome! Hope you liked it!

Brittany said...

I agree with the above! I loed that with the rant you backed up your points and had everything well thought out! I couldnt agree more! I think people just need stuff to bitch about.. and if they dont have something valid they'll make something up!

I hope thing work out! Its such a tought time right now with the economy in general! My mom is sick and so she's worried about Christmas presents! We dont care if we get anything, but it kills her to not be able to buy us stuff! I'm sure it'll kill those parents to not be able to give their kids everything they want as well!

Miss Vicki said...

Awesome post :)
I call these people 'haters'...they just gotta moan about something...and at the same time enjoy the benefits of said thing that they moaning about!! They should put there energies into something solving world hunger and poverty...not ruining families lives.

Tress said...

@Brittany- Thanks!! I'm sorry to hear about your mom! I actually like the gift giving more than the receiving and it would be so hard for me to not be able to buy for people.

@Vicki- Thank you! I completely agree. Solve something more serious than dust issues. Pssht. Stupid haters.

Bursts of Bubbles said...

Thats awful, it doesn't make sense as to why they don't just move again rather then making/creating such a fuss.

Anonymous said...

My Greenie self will not unfollow you because whether I'm a coal fan or not, I am a people fan. I think you have TONS of excellent points! Don't bite the hand that feeds you would be the best way for the company to start answering the phones. I hope that your company pulls through and that Christmas is still Merry for everyone. And now I need to read Snow Day again....