Charles Pierce: The Invisible Hand is just never going to get tired of slapping West Virginia around.If you happen to be a woman and pregnant, this water is most definitely not for you. But for everyone else, it’s perfectly healthy. Hell, it’s probably even nutritious. Don’t ask how that’s supposed to work, it just does. In any case, every glass includes a little something to chew on, so what are you complaining about?
More than 100,000 gallons of the coal slurry is believed to have flowed into Fields Creek, a tributary of the Kanawha River, officials said. Inspectors are testing the water to determine exactly how much leaked into the creek, the officials said. The spill at Patriot Coal was caused when a valve inside a slurry line malfunctioned, the state environmental protection officials said. Containment efforts by Patriot Coal began immediately, and cleanup activities are underway, said Janine Orf, a vice president at Patriot Coal. State EPA spokesman Tom Aluise said the water in the county was safe to drink, though West Virginia American Water has a “do not use” alert in place for pregnant women in the Kanawha Valley after an unrelated January 9 spill.So there’s a new spill, about which nobody has to worry, so they can relax and just worry about the spill in January, which is “unrelated” to the latest one, unless you count the fact that they’re all connected by centuries of environmental damage and neglect, and forty years of deregulatory frenzy. Unless you count that.
Time to drink up. Everything’s fine. At least, until Liberty Eagle Flag Industries dumps toxic fly ash in school lunches somehow. But we can’t put regulations on the job creators and if Paul Revere’s Freedomgasm Chemical Company can’t sometimes put toxic coal slurry into your groundwater, then freedom is dead and the terr’ists have won.