CEO Of Coal Miner Massey Energy Blasts Climate Bill, Government At Industry Rally In W.Va.

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Holden, W.Va. (AP) -- Massey Energy chief Don Blankenship blasted climate-change legislation Monday at a Labor Day concert and rally in southern West Virginia.

Blankenship says he wanted to show people at the event how government regulation is hurting the coal industry, driving up energy prices and making the country less competitive.

He says the idea is for people who attended to educate their neighbors and friends and encourage people to speak out.

Virginia-based Massey, which operates mines in West Virginia, Kentucky and Virginia, was the lead sponsor of the rally, which blankenship said cost about $1 million to stage.

Organizers had predicted the event, headlined by country star Hank Williams Jr., could draw as many as 100,000 people to a reclaimed Logan County strip mine.

A Massey spokesman estimated the afternoon crowd at 70,000 during Williams' performance.

A steady rain that developed near the end of Williams' set sent many in the crowd heading for home.

Headlining the event were Fox News personality Sean Hannity and Williams, while rocker Ted Nugent served as master of ceremonies and played briefly.

(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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  • by Byron on Sep 9, 2009 at 08:21 PM
    Massey energy is one of the most vile repugnant outfits on the planet and Blankenship it's CEO (corrupt energy official). They've done nothing but destroy the landscape and kill the lives of the many thousands of residents that have to live with their handiwork. Blankenship is probably the single greediest individual on the planet, and THAT'S saying something. Of course you also had the likes of Sean Hannity and his ilk singing their praises (and I'm sure paid hansomly for doing so).
  • by WTFever on Sep 9, 2009 at 05:10 PM
    Ok Brandon not a political rally so why blast legislation and fox news idiot Hannity along with publican wanna-be singer Williams and poor old ex hippie turned moron Nugent these right-wing lugnuts would sell you all down the road for a chance to carry Rush's the dope-heads dirty underware its a new world and Massey and Blankenship have done nothing to help the miners wasted a million dollars on this freak show when miners are wondering where their next pay check will come from.They have had 20 yrs worth of warning this was coming and they did nothing to advance coal technology now that they see people were serious and they cant get no more extensions to rake in the money from the miners labor they want to cry foul and make them think they care for them I'd lay odds if they would give them more time they would do nothing but business as usual and watch them jump to give the miners a raise at contract time they have always put miners interest first before profit
  • by Kathryn on Sep 8, 2009 at 08:11 AM
    I agree. This event honored our country and should have been covered. I'm sure Sean will show some of it.
  • by Brandon Location: Parkersburg on Sep 7, 2009 at 06:45 PM
    It is disappointing to see such an event so overlooked by media! It was announced before Hank Williams Jr. performed that the 100,000 mark had been broken. Some claim that it was the largest labor day celebration in the U.S.. This was not a political rally but a celebration of "working America", a disappearing breed in this country.
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