Union mine workers in Alabama are taking part in a historic strike, the first of its kind in four decades, accusing Warrior Met Coal of first exploiting its workers and now inspiring violence against them on the picket line. Freelance journalists are on the ground and local news has been covering the story from the start -- yet more than three months into the strike, the historic labor action has not received so much as a single mention from CNN, Fox News, or MSNBC.
The strike gained coverage from larger print publications like The Guardian and The Nation in June, but even after protesters faced arrest and targeted acts of violence, cable news still did not deem it newsworthy. (For comparison: Fox News, an outlet that has consistently claimed it cares about coal jobs, devoted 1 hour and 18 minutes over just five days that month to covering a school district in New Jersey that changed references to holidays on its academic calendar to simply “days off.”) When the miners took their efforts to New York City to protest the hedge funds that backed Warrior Met -- including its largest stakeholder, BlackRock -- the biggest names in news remained silent.
Hey y’all, as a New Orleans resident I just wanna say two things about the horrible devastation that Hurricane Ida is going to cause:
1. Many people did not have the choice to evacuate. I was lucky enough to have somewhere to go, but the poorest and most vulnerable members of the New Orleans community often do not have the resources to leave. Instead of criticizing them for staying, please do what you can to help them in the aftermath.
2. New Orleans is going to receive a lot of attention in the aftermath of the storm, especially considering Ida hit on the 16th anniversary of Katrina. However, there are dozens of smaller communities in Louisiana who are going to experience exponentially more damage. Please keep in mind that thousands of people in southeastern Louisiana are going to lose their entire towns. They deserve as much attention and relief effort as New Orleans does, if not much much more.
I know many of us are simply exhausted after the last year and a half, but please keep in mind that so many people do not have the luxury not to care. If you see an opportunity to help, all I ask is that you do what you can. The only way we can get through this is together.
Early Tuesday morning, dozens of mineworkers from Alabama’s Warrior Met Coal Mine headed to New York City’s financial district. There, they protested outside the Wall Street firms that own controlling shares of their employer, including BlackRock, the world’s largest asset management firm.
Here was a scene made for TV: Burly miners that so often formed the backdrop for former President Donald Trump’s environmental rollback announcements standing up to rapacious firms that populist Republicans have railed against. And yet the supposed right-wing populist media figures and politicians who claim to love coal and have trotted out former miners and guys in hard hats have been conspicuously absent from Tuesday’s media-friendly action.
It’s not just that Fox News neglected to cover the action—in three months, it’s failed even mention the ongoing strike that it’s a part of. More than 1,000 Warrior Met coal workers have been on strike since early April, first over unfair labor practices and then fighting for fair terms on a union contract. The story is a real scandal: After the mine’s previous ownership declared bankruptcy in 2015, Wall Street firms bought it up and substantially lowered workers’ pay and benefits. It’s a clear assault on coal miners’ jobs, and yet Fox News has ignored it completely.
When now-President Biden made campaign promises to shut down coal plants in an effort to address pollution and climate change, the network slammed him for threatening coal workers’ jobs. It did the same when he canceled the Keystone XL pipeline. For that segment, Fox anchor Carley Shimkus spoke with a former coal miner who addressed Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election about her comments on coal. Shimkus tossed a few softballs and then ended by noting “we can see that American flag behind you, we know that you’re a patriotic guy, and we’re so happy that you landed on your feet.” When Biden made out of touch remarks about how coal miners should learn to code, Fox and Friends’ Rachel Campos-Duffy called it Biden’s “‘deplorable’ moment,” referencing comments by Hillary Clinton in 2016 because the network can only relitigate past grievances. (The network also went after Clinton repeatedly for her insensitive comments that she’d “put a lot of coal miners out of business.”) And when Trump falsely promised he’d save coal, the network fawned over his promises.
At first blush, it might seem the Warrior Met strike would fit perfectly into Fox’s narrative, what with working class miners from a Republican state heading into the big liberal city of New York to confront the people who screwed them over. But now that coal miners actually need support, Fox News has given them nary a mention.
There’s a major difference between the climate plans Fox’s hosts have decried and this strike: The former threaten coal bosses. After all, though Warrior Met has left workers with worse health care and a lack of overtime pay, it’s awarded company executives bwith bonuses of up to $35,000.
That’s also why the channel never seems to report on how coal’s pollution harms miners—something clean energy policies and a just transition could stop—or how amid the pandemic, coal companies have been laying off workers in droves while protecting shareholders’ profits. It seems Fox News and Republican politicians themselves aren’t really all that concerned about coal miners whose livelihoods are under siege. It’s the bosses, not the workers, who it wants to protect.
hey everyone - I wanted to take a moment to spread some awareness about Hurricane Ida and share ways to help the southeast United States.
my hometown and the surrounding region are currently experiencing one of the most catastrophic natural disasters we’ve seen in decades, apart from Hurricane Laura last year. storm surges, heavy rainfall, and 90+ mph winds are destroying infrastructure and have already left hundreds of thousands of people without power (which, for many, may not be restored for weeks or months). this storm developed so rapidly that many people had no time to plan an evacuation even if they could afford to, and it’s moving VERY slowly over the region, meaning that these torrential winds and rainfall will continue into the next day or longer. all of this compounded with the fact that hospitals are already overwhelmed due to COVID-19, the lack of air conditioning in the coming weeks will spell disaster for many, and the 16-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina is today creates an incredibly bleak situation for residents of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and beyond.
if you are able to help, please consider donating to the Mutual Aid Disaster Relief fund, Imagine Water Works, or directly to those impacted seeking aid. DO NOT DONATE TO RED CROSS OR THE SALVATION ARMY. if you know of any other funds or individuals in need of donations, please reblog and add them to this post! if you’re unable to donate, that’s okay - please consider spreading the word regardless, because we desperately need your awareness and support. thank you for reading this far ♥️
These might appear to be a thread of nonsensical unrelated tweets, so let try to me string them together:
First, we have unvaccinated antivaxxers blaming the spread of coronavirus on people who have been vaccinated. Yes, you read that right. (source)
Second, the unvaccinated, particularly in Southern states like Mississippi, are taking Ivermectin. Ivermectin is a de-wormer for horses and cows, that unvaccinated Trumpsters are taking because Fox News hosts Laura Ingraham, Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson told them that animal medication—which is not meant for human consumption—was safer than the coronavirus vaccine. (source)
It’s worth noting that all three Fox News hosts have reportedly taken the coronavirus vaccine themselves, even as they tell others not to.
Third, Alabama has run out of ICU beds because of a surge of COVID-19 cases. And Donald Trump is having a MAGA rally there, where he and his unmasked, unvaccinated supporters will congregate and then go back into their communities and spread more coronavirus (which they will blame on vaccinated people).
Fourth, Alabama has preemptively passed a law that prohibits businesses from banning customers who have not been vaccinated. However, Alabama is allowing businesses to require masks… for the time being.
…. I honestly do not know how to best describe these facts: “Darwin awards” or “death cult”.
Look, there really are some good people in the South. Like Dorothy Oliver and Drucilla Russ Jackson, who are fighting to get their communities vaccinated. But unfortunately, they’re like small islands of sanity, surrounded by vast oceans of white supremacy and ignorance.