Coal Mine Tragedy = Robert Murray is a Megalomaniac Blivet

Posted By on August 8, 2007

I’m spitting this out quickly, and angrily, so forgive me if I skip around.

Bob Murray is a self loving, soulless and dangerous BLIVET.

The first time I heard about Bob Murray, owner of Murray Energy Corporation was a few years back amid rumors of illegal anti-Union practices at Crandall Canyon Mine in Emery County, Utah. There were complaints of alleged intimidation and threats when the mine employees were considering unionizing but, as far as I know, nothing was ever investigated or looked into.

The second time was when anonymous phone calls were made to the USDC voter fraud hotline in 2006 alleging that a letter, from Bob Murray, read aloud to employees on Election Day, stated that if it were found that they hadn’t voted Republican, they’d be fired.

So, when it turned out that the mine tragedy on the news was at the Crandall mine, Bob Murray was on my mind. When I saw his press conference, Bob Murray was on my last nerve.

When Bob Murray rushed to the microphones for a press conference concerning the miners trapped at the bottom of a coal mine, at least that’s what the media thought, he decided to talk about himself, his company, the importance of the coal industry to America, himself, his company and himself some more.

Then he blamed God. Or, rather, an act of God.

Then he blamed Congress, God, male pattern baldness (seriously), and Congress again.

You see, Bob Murray wants you to know that the coal mining industry is under attack by congress and global warming activists. Bob Murray wants you to know that coal mining is an “essential” industry for us poor folk who want affordable electricity.

Bob Murray wants you to know that his mine didn’t cause the earthquake that collapsed the tunnel. In fact, Bob Murray wants you, once this inconvenience of this act of God is over, to take a tour of the mine with him. Come see what the wonderful world of American Coal is all about. It makes me wonder if, when someone accepts his invitation, he’ll hide all the Mexican Nationals he has working there (Republicans hate Mexicans).

Then Bob mentioned the six trapped miners, 1500 feet underground, in the Crandall Canyon Mine in Emery County, Utah. It’s important to note that he mentioned the miners for the first time only SEVEN minutes into his prepared release.

While no one was looking for someone to blame (yet) Bob Murray started trying to cover his ass. He wanted you and the media to stop talking about the over 300 safety violations his mine has been cited for over the last couple of years. He wants you to fret about the economics advantages to coal mining, and the legislation that has him all upset.

All the media, the families and the folks watching TV wanted to know at this point was that Bob Murray’s company is doing everything it can do to save our trapped miners, and to help their families get through this difficult situation.

Maybe, just maybe, Bob Murray would be the world’s most transparent and pathetic BLIVET this week if he had started his press conference off with what is the most important topic: the rescue operation for the trapped miners.

Listening to Bob Murray go on and on about any issue EXCEPT for the miners for SEVEN MINUTES before he even mentioned them, shows that a hard right-wing, profit driven, anti-union, corporate-welfare Onanist, chucklehead like Bob Murray is a colossal waste of skin.

Listen to Bob Murray’s press conference at and let me know what you think.

About The Author

Writer, part time indie-film maker, musician, wonk and political consultant. Host of The LEFT Show Award winning writer of Former Democratic National Committee Communications Director for Utah. Creative Director for Defenestrate Media Group Award winning host of the late Left of the Dial.


57 Responses to “Coal Mine Tragedy = Robert Murray is a Megalomaniac Blivet”

  1. […] Bob Murray, Staunch Critic of Unions and Environmentalists, Rebuked for Comments […]

  2. Jason The says:

    Seems he was more concerned about covering his own ass than saving the miner’s asses.

    He gives me the Heebie-Jeebies.

  3. Aaron says:

    Now, I have to say that this whole thing has been blown way out of proportion already. I just finished reading that last post by JM Bell, and he’s angry that it took Bob Murray 7 minutes to acknowledge the trapped miners?

    Well, excuse me but we all just had to read 3 paragraphs of ranting about how much of a “self-loving, souless, BLIVET” Bob Murray is before we ever saw a mention of the trapped miners in that post.

    Even then it was only a brief mention before another longer barage of left-wing extremist ranting.

    This is not a political issue. No matter where you stand on the whole Big Energy vs. Environmentalism debate, the fact remains that there are 6 men trapped 1500 feet underground. They have been there for two days. If they are even still alive, they are having to deal with bitter darkness, eroding oxygen and only about 6 lunch boxes worth of food, all the while knowing full well how deep underground they are, and how difficult it will be for anyone to get to them.

    Put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself how important Global Warming or Bob Murray’s rambling would be to you in that situation.

    Don’t forget – these men also have wives and children who have no idea if they will ever see their husbands/fathers alive again.

    So let’s put the political crap to bed for now and focus on the most important thing right now – getting these husbands and fathers home to their families.

    After that, Democrats will continue to accuse Republicans of being greedy, self-loving liars that are going to destroy the world with war and oil spills.

    Republicans will continue to accuse Democrats of being tree-hugging softies that are going to destroy the US economy by taxing everyone up the ass so that the govenment may be able to pay everyone’s medical bills.

    Blah…..Blah…..and once again…..Blah!

    It’s a never-ending debate, and it will be raging long after this mine tragedy has left the eyes of the press, so you won’t miss anything if you take a few days off to actually care about the men stuck in the mine and those that love them.


  4. marshall says:

    Did you see the press conference tonight where Bob shows up with coal soot all over his face but magically his helmet and clothes are spotless? I am trying to find a picture of it.

  5. JC Carter says:

    I was so glad to hear him start out saying: “We don’t know why the mine collapsed and won’t know until we can get down there. Right now our only concern is to get to those men out as quickly and as safely for them, as possible…”

    Oh wait… that was what I WISHED he was saying, instead of him acting like a sack and letting us know that the miners came somewhere after his hair restoration treatment in his priorities. Yep. Good boss, that.

  6. ZoRO says:

    Bob is a great Republican!

  7. marshall says:


    We didn’t bring this upon Bob, Bob brought this upon himself. All he had to do is act like a CEO that gave a shit about employees and none of this would be an issue. But instead he decides to take time out of a press conference about the status of the trapped miners to tell us how great his company is and his views on global warming..

    Bob is a complete waste of time and he is spreading disinformation by the bucketful. The other night he says it will be a week to get to the miners and then yesterday the story changes to two to three days. Talk about being in their shoes. The families are going through enough without dealing with this buffoon.

    I would love to be concentrating right now about getting to those trapped miners but every time Bob holds another press conference I think another five feet of manure is added over there. Did you see the one he held last night? I am ready to put the political crap to bed and I wish Bob would do so. Tell Bob to shut his pie hole and we’ll call it even.

  8. Clarity says:

    Hey Jeff – how the hell are ya?

  9. JC Carter says:

    Aaron, you’re shooting the messenger. The point of this is that Bob could have spent less than seven minutes telling the press that his only concern was to get the miners out. HE chose to make that press conference political and essentially tell us that he doesn’t give a squeeze about his men over covering his ass. JM didn’t say anything against Bob’s environmental stand, just that it was inappropriate to bring that up when we should ALL be concerned about the men who are trapped down there.

    And just because JM didn’t mention the miners for two paragraphs is not indicative that he doesn’t care about their situation. Should we ignore the stupidity of a leader that put those men into that situation, whose only goal it seems is to cover his own copious ass? Yes, dig those men out, and while that’s going on, take a look at the actions of their CEO, and ask yourself… was it a natural disaster or a leadership disaster that put them there?

  10. Wordsmith says:

    I’ve been following the mine collapse since it happened before it hit the big media. Primarily because it’s regional (I’m in Idaho).

    I watched that damned news conference. Christt – even the Sago mine owners weren’t close to being this hypernarcissistic.

    He’s on again….he’s been up four days, he’s hasn’t left the mine for four days, his voice is failing because he’s been there for four days…..

    A tiny paragraph in a story from Yahoo lit me up, from the 7th:

    Relatives of the miners waited for news at a nearby senior center. <b>Many of the family members don’t speak English</b>, so Huntington Mayor Hilary Gordon hugged them, put her hands over her heart and then clasped them together to let them know she was praying for them, she said.

    Tula Connell writes for ‘firedoglake’; she works for the AFL-CIO in D.C. I sent her some stuff (links) I’d found on Bob Murray. She writes on workplace issues, unions, etc. She wrote about this yesterday at firedoglake.

    Small FYI: Murray’s company is in Pepper Pike, OH. I graduated from college in Pepper Pike. Pepper Pike, Hunting Valley out that way is quite, quite exclusive – wealthy. (the nuns who moved the college out to PP did so when ‘it was in the middle of nowhere.’)

  11. JM Bell says:

    Aaron, the difference is: I don’t own a mine where six miners are trapped. I didn’t get up at a press conference about rescue attempt for the miners and start blathering on about myself, my company, my hair loss, my hate for liberal, etc. etc.

    He did. Besides, it was a post about what a douche bah Bob Murray is, and, I think I covered that pretty well AND I mentioned the miners more often than he did.

  12. Aaron says:

    Yeah, I get all of that guys. And don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to defend Murray. He is quickly making himself a poster-child for what is wrong with Corporate America today.

    His press conferences should certainly be more focused on the rescue attempt rather than the CYA stuff, but combating it with telling him all the reasons he may be wrong on his stance on the Environment and Global Warming only fuels the fire, that’s all I’m sayin’.

    This “rescue effort” is devolving into a political pissing contest way too quickly, but that does tend to happen when it comes to things like questionable mining practices.

    There’s only so many ways to get coal out of the Earth, and until we can come up with a practical way to replace it, we are going to have to deal with these kind of blubbering fools. It’s unfortunate, but all we can do is to make coal less valuable, then guys like Murray lose all of their power. It’s as simple as that.



  13. dion says:

    Is this a case of some sort of “envy” ? loll Murray must have SOMETHING that JM Bell wants. I hope JM Bell gets it.
    Coal Miner in Kentucky

  14. JM Bell says:

    dion – The only thing Bob Murray has that I want is a non-union mine. If it were my mine, it’d be a Union Mine within the first 5 seconds of change of ownership.

  15. b perz says:

    So much to say so little time… jmbell, if you did take it union in five minutes you would be out of business in five more minutes. Murray’s distaste for unions did not arise without cause. He ran a mine in the mid 60’s that became a living hell because of union leadership. A once good union turned into a nightmare when autonomy was granted to the locals at the end of tony Boyle’s time. radicals turned the industry into disfunctional money losers. Murray did not cause it, foolish radicals ruined it. Murray got along well with the old heads that ran it prior to Arnold Millers entrance.

    Now, Murray grew up in the coal mines. He got educated and went to work and went to the top. He ran an excellent mine and division. He was a tough man in tough times. He has not changed. The world has. We are not used to hearing straight talk anymore. Murray has many faults, like the rest of us. Telling the truth as he sees it is not one of the faults. I have not personally talked to Bob since I left the coal industry in the 80s. But he has changed little since then and I believe he is doing what he believes is right no matter what anyone else thinks. He is as close to an Ayn Rand character as you will see today.

  16. JM Bell says:

    Murray had a bad time with a local? Golly, I wonder why? Do you suppose it’s because every mine he’s ever touched has had abysmal safety conditions? It’s public record, go look it up.

    Calling how Bob communicates “straight talk” is about the most ironically laughable thing I’ve heard this week.

    The world hasn’t changed so much that a guy who screams “Earthquake!” AFTER seismologists already said “No earthquake” gets a pass.

    The world hasn’t changed so much that, when holding a press conference about rescuing the miners, the CEO spend most of the time polishing his own knob and playing CYA, he gets a pass.

    The world hasn’t changed so much that when Murray blames Al Gore for his cave in (Gore was nowhere near Utah that day, BTW) he gets a pass.

    The world hasn’t changed so much that when a bloviating peckerhead like Bob Murray dances around like a crazy, squawking gnome, bitching about the Liberals, the great global warming conspiracy, how much poor people should kiss his ass, his contempt for Mining SAFETY REGULATIONS, all the while there’s six guys trapped at the bottom of a caved in mine, he gets a pass.

    No f**king way.

    There are a lot of very profitable mines that are Union mines, even in that area, sport. That Murray pissed off a Local some 30 odd years ago and has been pissing on the Unions ever since because of their insistence on safety standards and health insurance is even more proof that he’s an asshole.

    So you say he hasn’t changed a lot since he crawled out of the mines on the backs of other miners? No, I imagine he was just as big an asshole then as he is now.

    He probably hates the unions because they couldn’t stand his ass and made him take a management position to get him the hell out of the hall meetings.

  17. Aaron says:

    Let’s calm down here everyone. There are two sides to every coin.

    Trying to look at this thing objectively, it seems to me that every comment from someone who has actually been inside a coal mine is backing Murray here.

    It is only those who have never been inside a mine that feel the need to pick this thing apart. Those people don’t understand the nature of what goes on down there. I just finished reading an article written by one of the journalists that was taken into the mine by Murray, and he had a whole different view of the situation after actually being 2 miles underground.

    Is Murray a perfect business owner? No, but who is? Name me one business in this country that has a perfect safety record. I don’t think you’ll find one. Even the safest of industries have their accidents, and coal mining is dangerous by its very nature – you’re digging a hole 3 MILES into the ground! There are going to be risks involved in that, there’s just no getting around it.

    The Crandall Canyon mine’s saftey record may not be spotless, but it is on par with the national average – which includes every union mine.

    Again, this is not a union vs. non-union, or liberal vs. conservative issue. Murray may be making it that with some of his ill-advised comments, but the liberal media is not being shy about picking him apart either. It is just a tense situation – and nobody knows for sure exactly why this mine collapsed – that won’t be known for sure for months after an extensive investigation.

    Whether the collapse was caused by a natural event, or by the mining activity is really not important right now. The lives of the trapped men are. Once they finally get to these guys, alive or dead, that’s when all of this other crap can be handled, but for now it’s a pointless debate.

  18. Wordsmith says:

    Again, this is not a union vs. non-union, or liberal vs. conservative issue. Murray may be making it that with some of his ill-advised comments, but the liberal media is not being shy about picking him apart either. It is just a tense situation – and nobody knows for sure exactly why this mine collapsed – that won’t be known for sure for months after an extensive investigation.

    The liberal media? Who? CNN? MSNBC? McClatchey? Christian Science Monitor? When a reporter asks a tough question or ‘goes after’ someone by questioning someone’s motives, etc., it is NOT indicative of “the liberal media.” There is no such thing. The mainstream media is this country is NOT liberal-leaning.

    As for those who allegedly come here and are supportive of Murray and state they work in mines. I’ve lived in Ohio, & specifically Kentucky in mining communitites. It’s called ‘knowing what side your bread is buttered on.’ I don’t believe they’re representative of miners. And if a union mine is so all-fired ‘bad’ – then why are there union mines?

    Has anyone broached the subject of Mr. Murray employing Mexicans citizens in his mine? Oh that’s right! He’s a friend of Mitch McConnell and Mitch “sleeps with” the Secretary of Labor, and he doesn’t have to abide by U.S.Labor laws.

  19. Aaron says:

    The media is left-leaning for the most part in this country. Anyone who doesn’t see that isn’t watching the news.

    Just look at recent presidential election coverage – in 1996 it was a VERY celbratory atmosphere on the CNN and ABC newscasts as they were announcing that Clinton had officially been re-elected. By contrast in 2004 I felt as if I was watching a funeral on those very same networks when it was announced that Bush had been re-elected.

    That having been said, the media have the right to form whatever opinions they wish, just as anyone else – but when I turn on a newscast to see what’s going on in Crandall Canyon I am looking for facts regarding the rescue effort – not Larry King drilling Bob Murray on his safety record.

    For the record, I consider myself a political independent. In my opinion it is insane to choose a side (Republican, Democrat, Liberal, Conservative, etc.) because one side is not 100% correct all of the time. The two-party system is a system of checks and balances and a testament to the genius of our forefathers.

    If the Republicans were given too much power there would be little regard for the environment and the rich would smother the poor. By contrast, if the Democrats were given too much power capitalism would be all but smothered with insane taxes used to pay for medical costs and social programs.

    I live in California, which is a perfect example of a state that has been suffocated by a Democrat dominated Assembly. You cannot support a family out here with a family income of less than $100K. The social programs are out of control here and as a result the cost of living has skyroceted for the hard-working folks. We have Gray Davis to thank for that, and even now that we recalled him, Schwarzennegger is a Democrat with an R in front of his name.

    When we had a true Republican governor (Pete Wilson) working with a Democrat dominated Assembly there was good balance, and the state’s economy was healthy. When Gray Davis took over the social programs grew out of control. You know it is possible to work the California Disability system to the point where you can be paid $1,200 a month WHILE having your rent subsidized up to 90%! It is almost possible to live rent free and be paid a healty salary by the state for doing absolutely nothing – I’ve seen it – and a LOT of it. It is suffocating our state, and SEVERAL businesses have left, making it VERY difficult to find decent work. Add to that the illegal immigration problem for which Gray Davis’ solution was to give them driver’s licenses, and I am looking to move out of state myself.

    Both Democrat and Republican ideology have their place, but only in moderation. You still need some of the other side to balance things out.

    Sorry, that rant got a little long, but to sum it up – let’s give Murray a break for now and let him work to dig his guys out of the hole. There will be plenty of time to pick apart his safety proceures and the ethics of coal mining later. For now 6 lives are on the line and that’s where the focus needs to be.

  20. marshall says:

    yea Aaron, the media is so left leaning in this country that they gave Bush the biggest pass in the history in media on the run up to this war.

    I definitely agree with this statement.

    Both Democrat and Republican ideology have their place, but only in moderation. You still need some of the other side to balance things out.

    BALANCE! – what a novel idea and if you think we have balance in this country you are delusional, this country is bought and paid for by the corporation on both sides every election, the needs of the people are secondary to the needs of the corporations and Bob is poster child number one for this.

    Watch this clip on CNN – Bob has definitely learned his lesson and I think it was pathetic that the anchor was trying to goat him. Lets move on…

  21. Sarah says:

    Bob Murray is a bully. At the moment he is trying to force a landowner in Woodsfield, OH to plug a gas well the landowner personally owns in order that Murray can long wall mine on the farm. This is a property rights issue and Murray is stepping all over the landowner’s right in his property deed to operate the gas well.

    The Court ruling will be appealed very soon.

  22. Aaron says:

    yea Aaron, the media is so left leaning in this country that they gave Bush the biggest pass in the history in media on the run up to this war.

    Now, the months before the war were not a good indication of the behavior of the media in this country. We had just been attacked by Muslim extremists – the country was at it’s most unified point since Pearl Harbor. Partisan politics were being put aside, and everyone was looking to Bush for some sort of retaliation. Now what has happened since all of that is very debatable – and a whole other discussion.

    BALANCE! – what a novel idea and if you think we have balance in this country you are delusional, this country is bought and paid for by the corporation on both sides every election, the needs of the people are secondary to the needs of the corporations and Bob is poster child number one for this.

    No I don’t think there is balance in the country right now, especially in California as outlined in my last post. Hopefully now that the Dems have re-taken control of congress, that combined with a Republican President can bring some of it back. Unfortunatley Bush is so polarizing that it’s likely he and Congress will be at a stale-mate until the 2009 Inaguration of the new President, whatever party happens to win.

    This is exactly the reason why I do not align myself with a particular political party. Corruption is rampant on both sides of the isle, and special interests are running this country. That’s just the way it is, and has been for a long time under both Republican and Democrat administrations. It will take a VERY strong leader to get it all under control, and I certainly don’t see one on any of the Primary ballots for 2008. It’s very unfortunate.

  23. Bob says:

    This guy is a piece of shit. I hope he gets trapped in a new collapse the next time he goes into the mine pretending to be orchestrating the rescue efforts. Then if we’re lucky, we can have his miners give daily press conferences talking about what an asshole he is, wait until all signs of life from him are gone, and then clear away the rubble, accidentally burying him in the slag, never to be seen again.

  24. Sam of the OH Valley says:

    I know the real Bob Murray. He killed my parents. For this and other reasons, I believe I speak with a great deal of authority on the matter of the “real Bob Murray.”

    The real Bob Murray is apparently so overcome with concern about “…what’s going to happen to families . . .” in the OH Valley and other mining areas as coal continues its painfully slow and tragic, yet inevitable demise, that he has not begun to notice the blood on his hands and the crimes against nature and human dignity that he has committed during his “admirable rise to the top.” Sister, please… That rise is from nothing more than the pile of bodies he has underfoot.

    My father was, for many years, the President of the Local UMWA and presided over a district that was home to 1 or more of Bob’s mines in OH. This was during the 70’s, the labor movement and in particular, the UMWA had seen a lot of intense activity that decade with the disappearance of Hoffa and the murders of Jacques Yablonski and most of his family. This decade also saw, soon thereafter, Tony Boyle’s ultimate conviction and Arnold Miller and Sam Church’s take-back of the Union from the mob, for the miners. My experiences as a child during this time, growing up with the name “Murray” as a household name (not just at my house but nearly everyone’s that I knew): that which I understood to be happening, that which I observed, the number of my father’s associates who met untimely deaths (and not just because of the health effects of mining) and the contempt and disdain with which the name “Murray” was spoken by not just by my father and the staunch Union crowd but even two other close relatives (my exact relation to whom I hesitate to disclose more specifically for fear of reprisals), one being another Unionized miner and the third being a company boss who had to report to Murray painted a clear picture. I can recall determining at a very young age that this man, Murray, had a habit of routinely robbing men of their human dignity, was routinely more concerned with profit than how many lives his company ruined and would seemingly drive a shaft through his own mother’s heart if he thought he could find some coal there.

    He and the OH valley coal industry hide behind a facade of concern for the people of the area and their economy when the reality is that for decades they have taken advantage of the population’s lack of political and economic clout or media attention, exploiting this to gut or side-step environmental standards, avoid costly modernization of polluting facilities and slowly kill the power of the unions that stood as the OH valley’s only leverage in their defense against the OH Valley Coal machine. (Murray’s recent opening of the Century Mine not only means the destruction of some of the most beautiful land that one could imagine but also has allowed him to begin killing all unionized operations while merely transitioning operations to a non-unionized facility where workers who must feed their families are forced to take a job in which they are not afforded the protection that they need to ensure their safety and not end up trapped at the bottom of a shaft.

    If this tragedy can at least shine some light on Bob Murray and his mining operations and help give some support to those who know that the OH Valley coal industry will not stop until it has drained the area of every piece of coal, untold numbers of human lives and land parcels of unfathomable beauty and historical significance leaving only sadness, illness, death, misery, cracked foundations, destroyed water tables, sludge ponds, destruction and dirty, dirty coal in its wake. Personal property values, the rights of landowners, 6 more guys dying at the bottom of a mine – – these are ‘cracked eggs’ to Murray and the industry he so staunchly defends in the ‘making of their omellette’ composed primarily of profit from the exploitation of humans, the rape of our land, air and water and the callous disregard for the health or security of the people about whom he/they claim to care so much.

    My parents, whose combined age did not reach 100 years, were two of the cracked eggs. And when each laid dying at the regional hospital in Wheeling, WVa (5 years apart but coincidentally in the same room#/bed#) and the nurses routinely mention the strangely high cancer-incidence rates of particular communities in the area…communities that apparently experience the primary “benefits” of Murray’s/the industry’s “concern” for them, one can assume these beneficiaries are simply more cracked eggs.

    If anything good could come out of this, maybe it will be the demise of this man, Murray and an end to the human suffering he continues to cause and promote for personal gain and pure greed.

  25. JC Carter says:

    He is as close to an Ayn Rand character as you will see today.

    Nah, if Ayn Rand had written him, that speech would have been much better –more compelling and heart-felt– and he wouldn’t have talked about his hairline.

  26. JM Bell says:

    Ayn Rand would never have a character talk about hair lines. Not deep enough, no pun intended.

  27. Mark says:

    First, I pray the coal miners are alive and well and if not I pray for them too and their families.

    JM’s I liked your blog.Coal Mine Tragedy = Robert Murray is a Megalomaniac Blivet

    I wonder if people can read through Murray’s insincerity because I can. I noticed too how he seemed to be covering his ass. How would he know there was an underground seismic activity that caused the collapse of his mine. The only way to find that out is with seismic sensors that the u.s. geologic survey uses to measure seismic activity. That is how they can pinpoint the location and epicenter of earthquakes. Murray would be better off just saying I don’t know what caused it and it will be investigated to determine the exact cause.

    Finally, the problem is not mine safety, coal mining, enviromental concerns. The problem is we are all looking to coal as one of our answers. Coal is like oil. Why can’t we find other alternative to creating energy than the use of fossil fuels. We would not have to worry about coal mine tragedies if our country would invest in alternative sources of energy like solar power, wind power, geothermal energy, hydrogen fuel cells—- my thinking is that there is no money for energy companies to make with sustainable energy. The oil and coal companies would lose power and the greedy owners(what is Murray estimated wealth-multi millions?) and ceo’s would lose wealth. So, I don’t think the problem is with Murray(as much as he rubs me the wrong way), the mine safety people from the government or the media, the problem lies in our(society in general) mentality and defense of fossil fuels as the only fuel source to make precious electricity and power.

  28. Ix says:

    Ok, I am a little confused, Aaron. How, exactly, does talking about Murray’s politics inhibit or slow the process of getting those miners out? How does NOT discussing this asshat’s f**kups help the miners more?

    This sounds suspiciously like “Don’t bash Bush, or you hate the soldiers.” Bullshit. I bash Bush because I care about our soldiers. I point to Murray as the rashy chode he is because I feel bad for the miners down there in the hole, and if Murray is in some way directly or indirectly responsible, I think that should be highlighted and discussed.

    It’s not my job to try to prevent this from happening, it’s his. It’s not my job to be a reassuring, positive presence for those who’s loved ones are in that hole, it’s his.

  29. Aaron says:

    Ok, I am a little confused, Aaron. How, exactly, does talking about Murray’s politics inhibit or slow the process of getting those miners out? How does NOT discussing this asshat’s f**kups help the miners more?

    This sounds suspiciously like “Don’t bash Bush, or you hate the soldiers.” Bullshit. I bash Bush because I care about our soldiers. I point to Murray as the rashy chode he is because I feel bad for the miners down there in the hole, and if Murray is in some way directly or indirectly responsible, I think that should be highlighted and discussed.

    It’s not my job to try to prevent this from happening, it’s his. It’s not my job to be a reassuring, positive presence for those who’s loved ones are in that hole, it’s his.

    Left by Ix on August 13th, 2007

    Ok, let me respond to this. You make very valid points. Discussing Bob Murray’s politics on a blog like this in no way affects the rescue effort one way or the other. I just feel that too many people tend to immediately tear into management in situations like this. While management may deserve to be torn into, I just think that the concern for the 6 lives that are on the line can be easily lost in the shuffle when everyone is focused on their feelings toward Bob Murray.

    No, bashing Bush does not equal hating the troops. It is Republicans that will tell you that. I am not a Republican. I am not a Democrat either. I try to look at everything objectively outside of party lines. I don’t like Bush either, so we agree there. To outline my ‘independent’ status here’s a look at my presidential voting record since I became old enough to vote:

    1996 – Clinton – I was kinda young and uninformed, but he seemed to be doing a good job from what I knew.

    2000 – Bush – By now I had seen the damaging effects of Clinton’s economic policies and that the dot com boom was just a mirage that covered up the fact that the country was headed for recession. I figured a Gore presidency would bring more of the same. Little did I know what a disaster Bush’s administration was going to be.

    2004 – Did not vote – I didn’t feel either Bush or Kerry deserved my vote. Bush’s mishaps are well documented, and I just saw Kerry being pushed around by special interests more than any president in history. In short, he just looked like a very weak leader. Not to mention he was likely going to just pull all of the troops out of Iraq, basically wiping out any positive progress that has been made over there and allowing it to become a terrorist hot-bed again, and allowing them to re-group and possibly plan another 9/11 style attack.

    So there you have it. Political parties mean nothing to me when I am at the polling place. I try to look out for the greater good. Most politicians and business leaders don’t and unfortunately the lives of 6 miners may be the latest price for that. I hope a decent candidate emerges in 2008, but it’s not looking good so far.

    Don’t worry – Bob Murray is going to pay for all of this in one way or another. At the very least the past week’s loss of production, the rescue effort, and the likely permanent shutdown of the Crandall Canyon Mine are all already going to cost him millions. If it is proven that negligence is the direct cause of the cave-in, it could cost him his business or even his freedom. Unfortunately it takes a very public tragedy like this to get people to notice these things, but Murray is going under the microscope now. He will get what’s coming to him in the end.

  30. Ix says:

    Ok, one last issue for you Aaron-

    “…allowing it to become a terrorist hot-bed again, and allowing them to re-group and possibly plan another 9/11 style attack.”

    Let’s be clear and factual- the people that attacked the US on 9/11 WERE NOT FROM IRAQ. There was NO SIGNIFICANT CONNECTION between the people that attacked us and the people we attacked.

    I hope that’s clear.

    That said, we’ve done all we can to make sure that in the future there’s a good chance that attacks on the US could come from Iraqis, so I guess I agree with you there. Except I want out troops home VERY quickly, and I think committing to that withdrawl of troops is the ONLY way to reduce the violence.

    This is not really apropos of this thread, so I’ll stop ranting there.

  31. JM Bell says:

    Rashy Chode? Good hell, IX, that’s funny.

  32. Ix says:

    Yeah, well, blivet got me started. I thought calling him any of the main equipment made him too important. He’s the area inbetween.

  33. JM Bell says:

    So, an unwashed, infected taint, then. Gotcha.

  34. Aaron says:

    Ok, IX, not trying to start a war debate here. I am very critical about the way this war has been handled. My statement was more directed at the aggressive troop withdrawal plan proposed by Kerry during his campaign. A plan criticized even by Congressional Democrats as “wreckless”, “dangerous”, and “far too aggressive”.

    I would love to see our troops come home. Hell, I have two old high school buddies over there right now. In the letters they have sent back it sounds like they still believe in what they are trying to accomplish over there. This thing certainly needs to be handled better, and it is VERY debatable whether we should even be in Iraq to begin with, but what’s done is done now and we ARE there. What needs to happen now is planning for withdrawing as many troops as possible while still maintaining the proper security over there. Hell, we still have military presence in Korea, and that conflict “ended” 50+ years ago. We are always going to have a military presence in Iraq, we just need to decrease the number and get a better rotation going so that soldiers aren’t having to spend so much time over there.

    And now we wait for the 2008 hopefuls to lay out their plans…..This may be one of the most important elections in history. I urge everyone to vote wisely. Don’t let your hatred for Bush cloud your judgement. We need to put the past behind us and put the best candidate forward to handle the situation as it stands now and move us forward, no matter what party they happen to align themselves with. Hell, I’m not big on Hilary Clinton, but if she can convince me that she has a plan that will work, I have no problem giving her my vote, same goes for Edwards, Guilliani, or any one of them. Political parties do not matter – the future of our nation does.

  35. Miner says:

    Sure, the white collars in the mining industry are backing murray, but the blue collars aren’t.
    I’d like to know how it is that murray “knows” it was an earthquake that caused the collapse, despite scientific evidence to the contrary. I’d like to know why 95% of his press releases is wasted on him covering his own ass, yet he accuses the media of spending too much effort trying to blame him (guilty conscience?)
    When the miners are found and the hype is over, the entire situation will be investigated and the truth will come out. My prediction is that murray will be exposed as a liar, a fraud… and most of all, a douche bag.

  36. mbw says:

    Murray is a blowhard who doesn’t care much about the lives of his workers.

  37. Anna says:

    Bob Murray and his cronies are a bunch of twisted, sick bastards! I read that they plan on continuing to mine at Crandall Canyon, as there is still recoverable coal thre….but of course! I am so pissed!

  38. […] for his best furry friend back at home, an ex-miner incarcerated for attacking his evil boss, and Bob Murray? Isn’t forcing (upon fear of loss of income) humans to work in unsafe conditions, possibly to […]

  39. […] for his best furry friend back at home, an ex-miner incarcerated for attacking his evil boss, and Bob Murray? Isn’t forcing (upon fear of loss of income) humans to work in unsafe conditions, possibly to […]

  40. crottinger says:

    This is a front page article from the Monroe County Beacon, Woodsfield, Ohio August 2007 concerning a court decision of Murray Energy Co. versus Charles and Beverly Datkuliak.

    Court Decision Could Have Far Reaching Affects in Gas Industry

    A decision about this well, shown on left, could have
    far reaching affects in the oil and gas industry. The
    Datkuliak family has been ordered to plug and cap the gas well which has provided heat to the residences and farm buildings for 17 years. Shown are Charles and Beverly Datkuliak, owners of the Sunsbury Township property, and their daughter Elaine and her husband Lawrence Truex and their children, Sarah and Jessie. Photo by Martha Ackerman

    by Martha Ackerman – Staff Writer

    “I’m not disputing the coal mine’s rights or the judge’s decision, but all deed language is different,” said Mike Datkuliak, a Beallsville resident whose family has been ordered to plug and cap a gas well that has been serving family members for the last 17 years.
    “I wouldn’t have a problem with the property across the road (part of the over 100 acre farm), the language is different in that deed.” Mike Datkuliak is speaking of a recent Monroe County Com-mon Pleas Court decision that concerns his family and could have far reaching affects in the oil and gas industry.
    The case has been appealed to the Seventh District Ohio Appellate Court and other entities have become interested in the outcome of that decision. Mike’s parents, Charles and Beverly Datkuliak own the Sunsbury Township property and the well in question is owned by Charles. It has provided free and reliable gas to a residence and other buildings on the Datkuliak property since 1990.
    Datkuliaks’ daughter Elaine and her husband Lawrence Truex and two children, Jessie and Sarah, live on the farm and depend on the gas well for heat. “Jessie is really upset by this situation,” said Mike. Other farm buildings and an ultra light airplane hangar are also heated by the gas well. Also in jeopardy are the water resources on the property on which 130 cattle are pastured.
    The mining operation has already caused subsidence in the hayfield making “some springs dry up” and damaging fencing. In some cases the fences are so tight they have snapped above the posts and in other areas, the fence is very loose and sagging. In 1922, in a Coal Severance Deed, title to the coal estate and rights to the surface estate were separated, but with a very important reservation –
    “Said Grantors reserve unto themselves and their heirs and assigns the right to drill and operate through said vein of coal for oil, gas and other minerals.” The reservation in the deed dated November, 1922, was made when previous owner Johnson Orn sold the No. 8 vein of coal to A.A. Caldwell. In 1923 Caldwell sold the vein of coal to S.H. Robbins. The reservation stayed in the deed language. Charles and Beverly purchased the property in 1973 and in 1987 they entered into an oil and gas lease with The Oxford Oil Company. The gas well was drilled in 1989 and in 1990, the Datkuliaks purchased the gas well from The Oxford Oil Company.
    In December, 2006, American Energy Corp. who acquired ownership of the coal rights in 1995, notified the Datkuliaks that they would be longwall mining under their property and their well would have to be plugged and capped. According to Datkuliak’s attorney, Richard Yoss, on April 24, 2007, without the knowledge or consent of the Datkuliaks, American Energy Corporation completed and filed with the Division of Mineral Resources an expedited application to plug the well, signing under oath that they were the owner or authorized agent of the owner of the well.
    According to Mike Datkuliak, an employee of the Division of Mineral Resources contacted the family and found no authorization had been given. The expedited application was denied by the Division of Mineral Resources. On May 7, the coal company filed a complaint against the Datkuliaks asking the Monroe County Common Pleas Court for an order compelling the well to be plugged. The Datkuliaks filed a declaratory judgment action against the coal company.
    According to Yoss, the cases were consolidated and “fast tracked” due to the fact that the area where the well is located is scheduled to be mined in early November.
    After a two-day trial, Judge Julie Selmon, Monroe County Common Pleas Court, rendered a decision stating that American Energy Corp. has the right to mine the Pittsburgh No. 8 vein of coal without liability for damages to the surface or to the Datkuliaks’ well.
    She so ordered the Datkuliaks to immediately plug and cap the well at their own cost with no compensation due for the loss of the well or the cost of plugging and capping it. According to Mike Datkuliak, who has done extensive research and documentation on his family’s case, the Ohio Revised Code mandates compensation.
    “But the judge gave it all away,” he lamented. The cost of plugging and capping could cost the family $15,000 or more. They are currently attempting to find a contractor to comply with the judge’s order, but hope the Court of Appeals reverses the decision.
    According to a summary provided by Yoss, “the case has far reaching ramifications and would logically require the plugging of any well in the path of any longwall mining, regardless of the commercial value of the well.” According to Yoss, the cost of drilling a well is between $175,000 and $200,000.
    “If this precedent stands up, it’s frightening,” said the attorney. An expedited appeal was filed with the appellate court. The Court of Appeals granted the Datkuliaks’ request and ordered AEC to file an answer brief within 10 days after the complete record on appeal is filed. The court stated that the matter would “be promptly scheduled for oral argument once all briefs have been filed.” The 10 day period ended Aug. 16.
    Mike Datkuliak has enlisted the help of Sen. Joy Padgett and Rep. Jennifer Garrison. Sarah and Jessie Truex wrote letters to the officials. “When I grow up, I would like to live somewhere on my grandparents’ farm,” wrote Sarah. “I am planning on using the gas well if it is still here. I was hoping to use the gas well for free heat and not have to worry about running out of propane or whatever I use for heat.” “The gas well means a lot to me …,” wrote Jessie. “My question is why can’t they just move over about 10 feet?” If the mining path stopped 900-1200 feet less, it would save the well, surmised the family. The tree line where the mining path ends can be seen easily from the family residence. Several entities have taken an interest in this case due to its ramifications.
    Motions for Leave to File Amicus (friend of the court) Briefs have been filed by the Ohio Farm Bureau and the Monroe County Farm Bureau and the Ohio Oil and Gas Association, in support of the Datkuliaks.
    In the motion filed by the Farm Bureaus, it reads: “Initially, the Ohio Farm Bureau and the Monroe County Farm Bureau feel it is important for this Court to understand the importance of this issue to rural Ohioans. There are approximately 63,000 active oil and gas wells in Ohio which in 2006 generated in excess of $125 million of royalties to landowners. Moreover, there are more than 4,100 landowners who actually own the wells on their property used to provide free natural gas to their homes, barns … The revenue and free gas provided by these wells are significant to and relied upon by many rural families, particularly within Monroe and other economically struggling counties in Southeast Ohio. “By contrast, the mining of the one seam of coal owned by Appellees will not produce any royalties or other revenue to the landowners … The importance of potential oil and gas production to the landowners was clearly reflected in the original severance deed … from which the Appellees’ entire interest is derived – the landowner expressly reserved the right to do exactly what the trial court has now eliminated, namely the right to drill oil and gas through the severed seam of coal and to operate those wells … The words “drill” and “operate” are significant. If the intent of the parties was to allow wells to be drilled, but to require those wells to be plugged a week, year or five years after the wells are drilled, there would have been no reason for the parties to expressly reserve the right to “operate” the wells …” “If this ruling stands in its present form,” said Bud Rousen-berg, local oil and gas developer, “it could be detrimental to coal bearing counties like Monroe. This is not just some small decision. People are not aware of the ramifications for present and future oil and gas development in counties like Monroe. We certainly need any industry we can get in Monroe County. It was noted that Monroe County has led the state in oil and gas production for the last several years. “It is clear in the deed that the Datkuliaks have the property ownership and access to the gas well,” said Tom Stewart, executive vice-president of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association. “The coal company, led by Bob Murray, has taken that away from them. Murra] purports that by an Ohio statute initiated by the Coal Development Office that coal has a dominance over oil and gas,” said Stewart. “The only singular reason for the statute was to help the coal industry because Ohio coal is flawed. It is full of pollutants and the government was helping them out. It did not mean that a coal company can seize the man’s property,” continued Stewart. “I admire Mr. Datkuliak for standing up and defending his property rights against the coal company and in particular Bob Murray. My industry and the coal industry have managed to get along pretty well but this is a flagrant abuse of property rights!” Stewart said. Regardless of the outcome,” said Mike Datkuliak, “Dick [Yoss] and Jason [Yoss] have done a heck of a job.” A follow-up on the appellate decision will be published in the Beacon.

  41. KENUTAH says:



  42. MaxKill says:

    You all need to quite smoking crack.. Bob Murray is a vey smart individual, who cares about his miners. Saftey in his mines are the number one priority. I do not care what disgruntled ex employes say on the news, of course they are going to say things to make him look evil and heartless.. Yes Mr. Murray has said a few things that probably should not have been said on TV, but never the less was correct and in his thoughts.. Bob Murray is a very opinionated man, and was probably raised to speak his mind, just like all of our grandfathers were raised… I work for Bob Murray in Carbon County at one of his mines, and our saying is no drop of blood is worth any amount of coal.. Saftey is number ONE…

  43. cs says:

    I think they were retreat mining which is very dangerous, but O.K.’d by msha, I think the miners were killed in the first cave in. No sounds were ever heard from them. I think Bob Murray is dishonest and cares only about the almighty dollar. I do agree with him about mining coal being important for energy purposes in the US, and with new power plants coal burns a lot cleaner than most people think, and yes when you turn on your light switch, thank a miner. I would never vote democrat, because they want to eliminate the coal mine. My husband is a miner, at a mine ran a lot better than what Bob Murray runs.

  44. Ponzio says:

    “Saftey is number ONE…”

    -Yes, but what about ‘safety’?

  45. Speechless says:

    Bob Murray is an ignorant clown, and anybody who is stupid enough to support him or agree with him should be buried under a mountain of coal right along with him. It’s has now been proven that his stupidity along with that of Richard Stickler is downright dangerous and based on what happened they should both be criminally prosecuted.

  46. Lisa Boyle says:

    Lisa Boyle

    I Googled for something completely different, but found your page…and have to say thanks. nice read.

  47. TMartak says:

    Having personally been involved with the Crandall Canyon Rescue Effort I find it appalling that the entire country has chosen to base their opinions on distorted & fabricated information. Bob Murray & UtahAmerican Energy has always made safety their number one priority, before the accident, during the rescue effort and still today. It is obvious that the world would rather continue to go on a witch hunt that face the God’s honest truth sickens me.

    “The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance — it is the illusion of knowledge.”
    –Daniel J Boorstin

  48. JM Bell says:

    How can you say:

    Bob Murray & Utah American Energy has always made safety their number one priority

    when the record of safety violations tells a completely different story?

    You may have had a good foreman that did a good job, even several of them, but the overall company philosophy is skewed toward profit and not much else.

    If his record is so good, why isn’t he taking part in the investigation of his company?

    Why did he disappear after the 4th bore hole?

    In fact, where is that chickenshit bloviator?

  49. […] succeeds in instituting better conditions for traveling pets. Or maybe he should share a cell with Bob Murray. Bob Murray treated humans cruelly and negligently in pursuit of money, and some of them died. […]

  50. […] succeeds in instituting better conditions for traveling pets. Or maybe he should share a cell with Bob Murray. Bob Murray treated humans cruelly and negligently in pursuit of money, and some of them died. […]

  51. […] succeeds in instituting better conditions for traveling pets. Or maybe he should share a cell with Bob Murray. Bob Murray treated humans cruelly and negligently in pursuit of money, and some of them died. […]

  52. Naomi Campbell says:

    <p>Hey!…Man i love reading your blog, interesting posts ! it was a great Friday .</p>

  53. […] that he wants to wait it out, hoping we’ll forget the dead miners, the crazy antics of Hatch’s bathroom buddy Murray, and that the MSHA report (which will blame an act of God) will give him ground to send a giant […]

  54. This is exactly what I was searching for on yahoo, I guess I got my answer! lol

  55. Pearlene says:

    Your post is informative. Safety is very essential, excellent post about this subject, thank you for sharing.