| The Coal Cowboy has outdone himself this time.
The so-called champion of alternative energy - what he called "clean and green" -- led the charge of the State Land Board in lowering the minimum bid price for the Otter Creek coal from 25 cents to 15 cents a ton.
His actions and his vote were bad enough. But they were accompanied by this outrageous statement:
"The policy deciding whether there will be coal-mining is not set in Helena, it is set in Washington, D.C.," he said shortly before the vote. "If this board votes not to lease coal at any price, there will still be development at Otter Creek."
So, if I understand this correctly: Policies emanating from Washington, DC, are good and must be followed?
Seems like this is the guy who has made a career of running against Washington, DC, often referring to it as a cesspool. After all, he proudly thumbed his nose at the feds over REAL ID and told the US government to shove it up its ass. He didn't like it and wasn't afraid to say so.
Hell. He was all over the national media. He basked for weeks in the glow of the spotlight even though it was a legislative resolution and he had no official role in it whatsoever. The resolution required no action on his part. None. A safe and sanitary act of defiance.
Observers erroneously concluded this bright star from the West was the real hero. Sorry. The hypocrite that he is was just acting. Most of his five years in office have been an act.
"Clean and green"? Foreget it. That was a sideshow and grist for the 2008 election cycle. No, for this guy, some national energy policies must be followed, now matter how ill-advised, no matter how dispicable. With the dirty corporate coal lobbyists leading the way, national energy policy ensures dirty coal is king. They have hundreds of millions to spend to fight any Congressional effort, no matter how lame, to curb greenhouse gas emissions.
And, the "Good Gov," as he is so reverently referred to in the postings on LiTW, did what he said he wouldn't do: Give our resourves away. Where he could have made a difference, he chose to lead by following corporate dogma and money.
Has he ever said he believes that coal contributes to climate change and global warming Don't think so. His escape is 'clean coal technology' and and a boondoggle known as carbon sequestration.
So, tell me, Governor, when an 80-car coal train passes through Helena, how many thousands of tons of carbon dioxide will be prevented because of clean coal technology? Or, sequestered by carbon sequesatration?
Like you, he knows the answer. None.
The Otter Creek episode is a tragedy that will unfold for decades and centuries to come. The December and February votes represent pandering to corporate interests at its very worst.
Off course, the issue was framed as one in support of economic development and job creation for eastern Montana. But, tell me: Is there an example of a coal-producing anywhere on this planet where coal mining produces prosperity in the region where the mining takes place?
Yes, it took two other votes to deliver the coup d grace. One Democrat led two others into the abyss. With a 66 percent approval rating, this guy can do no wrong. Or, so it seemed. Just imagine what would have happened had five Republicans occupied these statewide offices.
Oh, and one last thing: What happens when there are no bids at the 15 cent minimum bid? It is abundantly clear that the coal industry colluded not to bid at 25 cents. Since the December vote, it has had us by the testes.
In unison now, along with the the Schweitzer trio,"We want to show we can be just like Wyoming and give away our resources. Just name your price. We'll approve it. Trust us. If it doesn't all work out, we'll blame it on Washington, DC."
Does the bullshit from this guy never end?