What’s most striking about Energy in Death’s Joe Massaro’s latest hit-piece, Corbett’s Corner Hears From Local Natural Gas Fractivists | Energy In Depth – Northeast Marcellus Initiative is that he writes as if he’s all ready for the backlash his patently absurd essay would naturally receive—but he knows he’ll have to deal with no such thing.
That must be a hell of a confidence builder!
He’s got all the moxie of a guy who thinks he’s scored big. The problem is that he rigged the game.
Fact is, at EID-Marcellus it’s only the comments that make their field reporters look good that get posted. EID is kind of like the sycophant who surrounds himself with paid pattootee-smoochers to tell him how handsome he is even though he’s come to resemble a rotting rutabaga.
Of course, he knows that—so he rigs the jig.
The irony is just as over-ripe: Massaro claims that the anti-fracking activists are wrong wrong wrong when we point out that the proof we’re gaining traction against this genocidal industry is that propaganda outfits like EID keep coming after us.
But not only do the soldiers of fracking fortune keep coming after us, they fake-up their entire enterprise to insure that we can’t respond to them–but make it look as if we could. If they can’t allow us to respond, and then beat us into silence through ridicule, name-calling, false accusation, and other assorted endeavors to discredit, they just put the shaft to free expression and cut us off their page—all the while pretending we’re still there!
Ergo, Joe Massaro responds to the anti-fracking respondents to the Steve Corbett radio show on WILK:
The first call came from a woman named Wendy from Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania. Listening to her speak for 10 minutes I could only imagine this must have been Wendy Lynn Lee, who we have featured on our blog for her strident anti-development views…Wendy always assumes we fear her, her friends and their activities, but it’s hard to fear a movie whose writers repeatedly show they know little about the science behind hydraulic fracturing…Wendy somehow believed our “fear” is portrayed through The Real Promised Land, but in reality the site was created to provide factual information and to connect viewers with individuals who actually live in areas experiencing natural gas development. We thought, quite rightly, that anyone who didn’t like the way Matt Damon and John Krasinski presented the information in the movie might want to hear from real people living in the Marcellus Shale region. We were correct and that’s why our Facebook page is gaining such traction.
Massaro does get one thing right: that’s me on WILK chatting with Corbett (though Massaro might try to spell my name right—he has issues here).
Let’s quickly dispel two things: first, “anti-development” is just code in BIG GAS world for “anti-fracking.”
But that’s just silly.
I’m quite for the development of alternatives, and I’m big on conservation.
What being pro-development really means is being on the side of, say, Massey Energy whose mine accident safety record includes 29 dead miners at Big Branch (For 29 Dead Miners, No Justice – NYTimes.com).
Or it means being on the side of Shell—and against hundreds of Nigerian farmers whose livelihoods were destroyed by the giant multinational (Farmers sue oil giant Shell over Niger Delta pollution – CNN.com).
Or how about being on the side of BP in the Gulf of Mexico. That certainly looks like “development.”
Or no doubt, and a little closer to home (and the smell of those rutabagas), sidling up to EXCO—a company that locates deep injection disposal wells in poor African American communities in places like Panola, Texas because they know they won’t get much resistance even though the drinking water is so polluted by gas drilling that folks there get their water delivered in five gallon jugs by the EPA (Texas Lawsuit Includes a Mix of Race and Water – New York Times).
If that’s your idea of development, well, thanks, but no thanks, Mr. Massaro.
Second, Promised Land isn’t about the science of hydraulic fracturing—that’s just a ruse to get us off the track. It’s about what landmen do—and how thoroughly dirty is the game they play to take grandma’s land right out from under grandpa’s feet.
That’s not “development” either, Mr. Massaro. That’s baiting, gutting, and eating while your prey is still alive.
What happen in Promised Land is also not fiction—it’s standard “operating procedure,” hence the endeavor to red-herring us away from the plot.
Here’s a nice example: Fake “Community” Meeting: EXCO Lookin’ for Some Love-Money
On the other hand, The Real Promised Land EID sponsored Facebook page is a propaganda machine that bans any and all postings that don’t tout its pro-gas line. That it has more hits that the Promised Land page is no doubt the product of a coordinated effort by EID-N-Fracker-Friends to insure hits. Fact is, The Real Promised Land is a commercial about an entirely fictional “community” pretty much like Peter Weir’s The Truman Show offers Truman Burbank a faked-up life.
Nice place to live if you can buy your way in.
But Frackland doesn’t really look like The Truman Show. Just ask the folks whose water has been permanently destroyed by the likes of, say, EXCO’s Mr. Miller:
And Mr. Massaro can’t be this dumb, so he’s just lying: the notion that “liking” a page means you like the page is just plain daft. “Liking” a Facebook page means you want it to show up in your feed–and that might be for lots of reasons, say, monitoring its Bull-Pucky.
The only thing real about The Real Promised Land is that it’s intended as a prophylactic against the real damage the film could produce for the gas industry—and EID knows it, or its soldiers just wouldn’t go to the trouble of faking up a Facebook page.
Fact is, EID’s The Real Promised Land epitomizes precisely what Promised Land is about: the mercenary and greed-driven strategies of corporations who hold that they’re entitled to commodify anything they think they call sell: land, water, air, people.
It’s an unwitting self-satire of a transparent attempt to cipher attention away from what the landmen just like them really do.
It’s pretty simple, really: if EID had honest goods to sell, they’d be able to respond to criticism with the truth. They can’t, so they don’t. First they offer us all kinds of re-dunculous “schmarguments” about watering golf courses, and how fracking makes H2O, and how it’s been around since the Neanderthals.
And we shoot the “schmarguments” down one by one.
Now, they’re running out, and running scared—so they reconfigure their websites and Facebook pages to look as if anyone can comment—as if they cared about the first amendment—all the while making up bat-poo-crazy stories about their opponents in order to “schmustify” banning them.
If the natural gas industry had honest goods to sell, they wouldn’t need EID and its soldiers of fracking fortune to run interference for them.
Imagine the manufacturers of, say, all those landmines still blowing off kids’ legs in Cambodia running a website, let’s call it Energy in Depth. They “field directors” like Massaro to run interference and write hit-pieces on those pesky folks who insist that it’s somehow bad to have live landmines in your farm fields. For awhile they just run a big fat propaganda line:
Landmines are good! Think of the jobs they bring getting them all planted, making sure they’ll explode only when they’re supposed to… Landmines are patriotic! We can become weapons independent! People who aren’t for landmines are Un-American!
But, gosh-darnit, some folks just don’t buy the punchline. They start to point out all of the really horrific consequences landmines come with—blown off limbs, blindness…They figure out that the landmines are being manufactured for anyone and everyone who’ll pony up the moola for them—including some pretty unsavory folks who will surely deploy them against us. They figure out that “Cheap, Abundant, American” is just a lot of hooey covering for the fact that a tiny handful of folks and their paid mercenaries are getting really rich off a venture that endangers all of the rest of us—and especially the poor farmer who’s kid in unlucky enough to step on a live one.
The only real difference between the manufacture of landmines and fracking is that fracking is part of an industry that has made it it’s business to make sure we’re dependent on fossil fuels—not because we’re addicts mind you, but because they are—to the money.
We’re out here ready and willing to make the leap to renewables and conservation, but we know that that’s not something most folks can do without the support of government and community.
And they know it too.
Indeed, the near-psychotic desperation of an industry willing to engage in something as blisteringly devastating as tar sands mining, mountain top removal, and fracking just to keep the fossil fuel train choking out the bucks for a few more years is reflected in the wholly sleezy rotting rutabaga tactics deployed by their soldiers of fracking fortune at EID.
But the jig is up.
So what’s a propaganda machine like Energy in Death supposed to do?
Rig the jig.
That’s what the soldiers of fracking-fortune are paid to do. Might as well be landmines, or Thalidomide, or cigarettes. West Virginia, The Niger Delta, the Gulf, a Southern Texas town. It’s all the same: genocidal profiteering, and the smell of that makes rotting rutabagas smell like Riverdale roses.