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Speaking at anti MTR giant Larry Gibson's Memorial; photo journalist Paul Corbit Brown explains part of why social movements frequently fail. He was speaking to several hundred activists gathered in Charleston WV to mourn the collective loss of a great leader in the fight against mountain top removal and several hundred activists from across the country who had tuned in to this live broadcast.
The entire memorial presentation is right here just click play.
Friends and family of Larry Gibson, the “Keeper of the Mountains,”
celebrated his life and legacy
on Sunday, October 14 from 2 to 6 p.m. in Charleston, WV
The event was broadcast LIVE right here.
1 hour of Tribute videos follows the memorial in this playlist.
this is the summer of "solidarity & mobilization," where convergences on emergency action in an attempt to restore environmental sanity to a crazy, overheated, world are taking place. this past weekend was chock full of extraction awareness trainings and action campaigns, from the tar sands blockade training in east texas, to the "stop the frack attack" teach-in and rally in dc, and the ramps "mountain justice mobilization" in west virginia. all in all, thousands of concerned citizens and environmental activists gathered for these events.
the "stop the frack attack" campaign drew thousands of concerned citizens who descended upon the capital from across the nation and the world, to protest the use of hydraulic fracturing as a method to extract natural gas and oil from shale beds and abandoned coal mines. this method includes drilling through the earth's crust, smashing up rocks in a dormant well site and capturing the vapors. it has been known to make water so toxic it can literally be set on fire while streaming out of the taps. it is also believed that it destabilizes bed rock to the degree that it creates small earth quakes in areas where fracking is practiced.
RAMPS pulled off the largest MTR direct action to date against the largest mountain top removal site in WV on Saturday. The Hobet Surface Mine was shut down for about 3 hours through a series of coordinated diversions, lock downs, tree-sits and banner drops. It has been reported that this was the only mine in WV without beefed up security in anticipation of the publicly announced action. Hobet was apparently too big & scary to imagine that Tree Huggers would have the balls to walk onto their site. The Police arrested about 25 people including atleast 3 credentialed press with total bail set at over a 1/2 million dollars. WV resident Dustin Steele has reportedly been beaten in jail and is being denied medical attention.
Mo'Fo' @ http://RampsCampaign.org
10 of 20 arrestees now released.
Today, hundreds of us will march onto a strip mine in West Virginia and shut it down. Concerned community members and activists are preparing to take nonviolent direct action to do what the politicians, the regulators and the courts have been unwilling to do: to defend the land and the people; to stop strip mining.
If you would like to support the RAMPS Campaign, please consider donating at
Union Miners Support the March on Blair Mountain
A little bit of Union History, morals & ethics in regard to the Blair Mountain Historic Battle Field; the site of the largest Armed insurrection in the United States since the Civil War. 10000 union miners engaged in armed conflict with coal company thugs and the US Military over the Unionization of the coal mines in 1921. From: FluxRostrum Views: 2506 19 ratings Time: 06:31 More in News & Politics
James "Guin" McGuinness discuses the realty of Jail Time for Non Violent Civil Disobedience actions to bring attention to the environmental cost of Mountain Top Removal.
Rescind mining permits on Coal River Mountain ~ October 19, 2009 Dear Governor Manchin, As residents of West Virginia’s Coal River Valley we write you to declare a state of emergency. Coal River Mountain is our last mountain untouched by mountaintop removal and it is in imminent danger of blasting. This would not only threaten our communities, it would also destroy our chance to have permanent jobs and renewable energy through ridge-top wind power. You have the power to rescind these permits. At any moment, Massey Energy could blast part of the Bee Tree site, on the containing ridge of the Brushy Fork sludge impoundment. Brushy Fork impoundment, permitted to hold 9.8 billion gallons of toxic sludge, is the tallest dam in the hemisphere, and it sits on top of a network of abandoned underground mines. We live in fear that the blasting could cause the dam to fail and create one of the greatest industrial disasters in our nation’s history. The emergency evacuation plan for the Brushy Fork sludge dam states that should it fail, a wall of water 50 feet high would hit Whitesville and result in the deaths of at least 998 people. Given this risk, blasting should not be allowed until your Department of Environmental Protection has conducted a thorough geo-technical examination of the impoundment’s stability in regards to the underground mines. "Yes, I'm not certain how close the -- I haven't actually been there to determine the how close the blasting is but blasting in the vicinity of a coal waste impoundment can cause problems, can cause fracturing of rock and create situations where there might be stability problems with the impoundment," former MSHA engineer Jack Spadaro said.
The Senior Citizens March to End Mountaintop Removal ended in a protest and press conference at Massey subsidiary Mammoth Coal Company on US-60, east of Cedar Grove, at 4:00 p.m. on Oct, 12th. Mammoth Coal Company is 25 miles from the march’s starting point at the state capitol in Charleston. At least 28 seniors between the ages of 50 and 88 put their feet to the pavement during the 25 mile walk, including Larry Gibson of Kayford Mountain and Jesse Johnson of the Mountain Party. The march ended peacefully with no arrests or conflicts. Baffled by this the army of corporate media teams were then forced to interview the elders about why the had marched and coverage was seen on every local TV station in Charleston.
the 5 day march's 5 video playlist is here http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=EEA07AE3D69276F9
Thirteen marchers, ages 53 to 88, walked the fourth five-mile stretch of their journey to the gates of Massey-owned Mammoth Coal Company Sunday. The route took them past American Electric Power’s Kanawha Valley coal plant in Glasgow, W.Va.. In the wake of Saturday’s banner drop at the Walker CAT facility in Belle, W.Va. security and one police vehicle met the marchers as they passed AEP’s entrance.
Two young people unfurled a banner which read, “Yes, Coal is Killing West Virginia’s Communities” off of the Walker CAT building in Belle, W.Va. Saturday afternoon. The youth are affiliated with Climate Ground Zero and say they acted in autonomous solidarity with the Senior Citizens March to End Mountaintop Removal, are affiliated with Climate Ground Zero. The marchers passed the Walker CAT building on today’s route. The March received its first physical harassment today. At 2:00 p.m. a driver threw a cup of water on Micklem, who says he “took it in stride.” The march has attracted both support and derision from passerbys. Marchers who so choose still plan to commit an act of non-violent civil disobedience to protest mountaintop removal at the conclusion of the march at Mammoth Coal Company on Monday afternoon.
After marching for 5 miles today the seniors settled into the Universal Unitarian Church in Charleston for a fine Bus Cooked meal from Everybody's Kitchen & Seeds of Peace. After the meal Larry Gibson kept the fire of determination lit for over an hour. I've tried to boil it down to the core of the essential.
Day 1 of a 5 day march covering 25 miles from Charleston, WV to it's end in civil disobedience actions at the front gates of Massey Energy owned, Mammoth Coal in Cedar Grove, WV. There will be an update video each day of the March.
Morgan Massey Dr. Julian, WV 6AM ish 9-9-09
I was filming a Chain & Tube Lock Down Blockade of the road which leads to Massey Energy Regional Headquarters as the first workers of the day arrived. I was wearing my Press Pass prominently around my neck. The road was an intersection off of a 4 lane road with a 65 mph speed limit and the blockade was about 30-40 yards from the intersection. The road appeared to continue for approximately a couple hundred yards. There is nothing at this intersection that marks it any differently than any other road intersecting this 4 lane roadway. This part of West Virginia often has severe fog problems, but not this morning. I interviewed the participants and waited for the cops to show up. The cops arrived quickly. I positioned myself about 30-40 feet from the lockdown and waited for the police interaction with the protesters. Deputy Eric Eversole appeared to be first on the scene. He briefly surveyed the situation at the lock down and then abruptly turned walking quickly toward me and said:
"Turn your camera off you're under arrest for trespassing."
I responded something to the effect that I was a Journalist and I was willing to leave and he responded that I could not, that I was under arrest. I'm not sure if I turned off the camera or not, I was experiencing a level of shock at the time.
Four people protesting Massey Energy's mountaintop removal mining practices were arrested Wednesday after linking their arms together with plastic pipe and duct tape, briefly blocking a private road to Massey's Boone County headquarters.The Boone County sheriff charged the four men, who range in age from 22 to 80, with trespassing, destruction of property, failure to obey lawful command, conspiracy and resisting arrest. The sheriff says the makeshift roadblock nearly caused an accident as cars backed up to nearby US 119 in heavy fog. Standup. One of those charged was 80-year-old Roland Micklem, 80, of Savannah, N.Y. Deputies also busted Joseph Hamsher; James McGuinness, and Fred Williamson.
A fifth person detained and charged after the protest was described by Climate Ground Zero as an independent videojournalist who goes by the name FluxRostrum. Cops called him Gianni Lapis and charged him with trespassing, conspiracy and failure to obey a lawful command. The latest protest comes just two days after a huge pro-coal rally that Massey helped sponsor.