In a column headlined "Congress must rein in an arrogant EPA," president Bill Raney of the West Virginia Coal Association invoked "jobs and "families" five times.
Not once did he mention the real reason for the massive destruction of our mountains - coal company profit.
Raney does not represent miners and their families. He represents coal companies that pay him to be their spokesperson.
If coal companies can make more money by replacing people with machines, that is what they will do.
They are in the business of making money, not protecting jobs or families, as Raney would lead us to believe.
Since my dad was an underground miner, coal companies have replaced 100,000 coal mining jobs with machines.
Raney tries to divert our attention away from mountaintop removal by accusing President Obama of being anti-coal and anti-business.
For sure, the Environmental Protection Agen-cy under President Obama is doing a better job of enforcing mountaintop removal mining laws than did Bush the younger.
This was not difficult.
How can a president who bailed out Wall Street and General Motors qualify as anti-business? Employees, executives and political action committees of large corporations gave several million dollars to Obama's campaign for president and for his inauguration.
Patriot Coal's Hobet 45 strip mine in Lincoln County is a good example of what EPA is really doing.
It allowed that permit to go ahead with "only" three miles of headwater streams filled in instead of six. To the EPA, it is OK for three miles of ecologically vital streams to be smothered in coal mining waste.