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Monday, March 12, 2012

"Fracking Democracy: Why Pennsylvania's Act 13 May Be the Nation's Worst Corporate Giveaway"

"Pennsylvania's Republican leaders have given the natural gas industry unprecedented power to overrule local government and drill anywhere."
So begins an article at AlterNet, March 7, 2012  | 
Readers here and my Facebook page already know I agree with the assessment.
The only element of it I like is the attempt to provide a standard set of requirements so that ordinances will similar regardless of the municipality. (But I don’t like the state usurping citizens’ rights to manage their little worlds in some rational way. Being forced to allow drilling anywhere and everywhere, albeit with a minimalist protection system, is not rational.)
“Pennsylvania, where the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution were signed and where the U.S. coal, oil and nuclear industries began, has adopted what may be the most anti-democratic, anti-environmental law in the country, giving gas companies the right to drill anywhere, overturn local zoning laws, seize private property and muzzle physicians from disclosing specific health impacts from drilling fluids on patients.”   http://www.alternet.org/story/154459/fracking_democracy%3A_why_pennsylvania%27s_act_13_may_be_the_nation%27s_worst_corporate_giveaway_?akid=8395.240522.iCH3CB&rd=1&t=5
Money talks and our legislators and governor listen. The notion that the state had to go easy on the industry or it would walk is utter nonsense. Where were they going to walk to? Someplace with even higher taxes? And there aren’t very many places anyway.
The law will surely be challenged in the courts. Let’s hope the legislature gets another chance to write a law on the subject. Maybe they’ll get it right next time.
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