Mountaintop Removal's Ending?
The EPA announces that it will enforce the Clean Water Act. Our hope: Mountaintop Removal stops immediately. It's like a war when peace is announced and suddenly a bird is singing in the tree next to you and you step carefully out of your basement, into the sunlight. Is this real?
And so Obama seems to be ruling against Mountaintop Removal. This is an interesting moment. How, exactly, does the political world impact the financial one? Are there no bombs going off inside the summits of the mountains this morning? (A little later I'll call the Appalachian Alliance folks in Charleston, West Virginia.) Are Chase banks' billions in the pipeline to big energy companies, slowed? Stopped? The Chase executives are undoubtedly phoning their corrupt Appalachian politicians and judges. What sort of stay or injunction can they place on EPA's enforcement? Is this just the beginning of a drama that plays out with years of lawyering, while the strip-mining continues?
Our activism has been against the key financier of Appalachian strip-mining, JP Morgan Chase. And we always start, in whatever campaign, with the defense of neighborhoods. The spread of the "Demon Mono-culture" in our urban neighborhoods by the blight of chain banks is a parallel kind of violence to the strip-mining in Appalachia. The pattern of consumerizing at home paired with colonizing abroad (with oil-drilling and mining, war, sweatshops) was a little different this time, though. It was so close. We could go to Coal River Mountain in West Virginia in less than a day.
Maybe we're ending a time of cannibalizing our own land. In Mountaintop Removal we've experienced Consumerism in its harshest form, a self-inflicted version of war. Whatever the outcome in the political and financial worlds, we believe that Consumerism in our personal lives is always the issue. If we continue our consumption that corporate marketing demands of us; if we keep using all that juice, well - they'll find a mountain to explode. The energy corporation's hacks will say they are still extracting from the earth for "the economy" and "jobs" and "American greatness," but the bottom-line remains - we're shopping for it.