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A watershed moment for towns

July 7, 2011

Although we do not yet have the full report from the DEC on drilling in New York State, we now know a few things about where they are headed. For one thing, they have committed to stay out of zoning and land use disputes between local towns and the drilling companies. This is a step forward. The DEC announced last week that “in cases where an applicant indicates that all or part of their proposed project is inconsistent with local land use laws, regulations, plans or policies, or where the potentially impacted local government advises the department that it believes the application is inconsistent with such laws, regulations, plans or policies, the department will, at the time of permit application, request additional information so that it can consider whether significant adverse environmental impacts will result from the proposed project that have not been addressed in the SGEIS and whether additional mitigation or other action should be taken in light of such significant adverse impacts.”

The governor has also signaled that he supports local zoning in this matter. If you’ll pardon the expression, this is a watershed moment for towns, who are being told that, though drilling will ultimately be permitted, they can and must step up to the plate to protect themselves.

For this reason, it seems prudent for those towns that are awaiting the report of the Multi-Municipal Task Force that is developing a road preservation law to ask for a delay until the task force has a chance to include and incorporate the state’s regulatory structure in its recommendations.

Ed Levy
Hortonville, NY

Delay is always good.

It is from page one of the Obstructionists' Handbook.


we can always just have the towns, State, and COunty forward invoices for road damage costs as a result of drilling and fracking to Natural, who is enthusiastically volunteering himself to cover all such costs to prevent it from falling on the backs of the taxpayers to subsidize this industry.

Good idea!

Start drilling and forward all bills! We have reached an agreement. Thanks, Obie.


it's nice to see someone take some responsibilty for these costs for a change. I'm not sure natural has any idea what kind of expense we're talking about though... oh well, there are no guarantees in business; if gas drives him to bankruptcy, so be it. At least the rest of us won't be losing money to make him money.

What do you know about responsibility?

We have taken responsibility for our actions and our lands for generations. We will take responsibility for it for generations to come long after you are gone. You and yours are losing money every day. You just aren't bright enough to see it.


we'll sign you up to sponsor all costs once Natural defaults on his financial obligations.

And please, oh responsible one, educate the rest of about why our increased tax bills to support your industrial welfare check will be the responsible thing for us and will make us money??

And please don't resort to the standard party line tired drivel about "bringing the troops home", "saving us the cost of our involvement in the mid east", yada yada when it is your same beloved oil industry backseat political cronies who sent them over there, and who want to increase their record profits further by lining up investors to sponsor their production of shale gas so that they can make a big profit selling gas that they otherwise might be doing well to break even on.

It SICKENS me when people use the emotional appeal of "bringing the troops home" to further their cause for profits. It is morally reprehensible to use the emotions of those who have lost a love one, had a loved one injured or disabled, or fear for their loved one every day, as a means to sell support for their selfish profit motive. Cabot's profits will not magically bring anyone's son, daughter, father, or mother home from the middle east right away. We all want them to be home safely and get the heck out of there, but false, empty promises in the name of money are utterly disrepectful and take advantage of those fears and sentiments in a cold-blooded predatory fashion that disguises cash as caring.

Obie delivers a sermon?

Natural gas extraction will help eliminate the need for foreign energy and lessen the likelyhood of stumbling into another viper's den like Iraq. You are in no position to preach, or lecture, to anyone about morality.

yet again

commentary irrelevant to the subject at hand as a means to distract from the fact that you can NEVER legitimately answer the questions I pose to you. You apparently can't explain how your something-for-nothing will benefit the rest of us.

And last I checked this is America, so I'm perfectly free to call out greedy pigs when they take advantage of such tragedy, pain, and fear to further their quest for a dollar. Whether or not we went over there for oil may be subject to some debate, but there is no connection between fossil fuel corporate profits and the return of our troops.

A Question of Legitimacy

Try posing a legitimate question such as "how does an obstructionist reconcile his energy and resource usage with the fact that he is against its extraction?". Answer: HYPOCRISY!

nice dodge redux

still avoiding the question.

And keep in mind Hick, YOU are the real obstructionist here. All your labelling and projection will not change that. The rest of us just want to move on with our lives. You want to obstruct the truth and the means to it, our livelihood, our way of life, our land, our resources, our environment, and our future so you can make a quick easy dollar just like a welfare queen. Only welfare queens don't need to obstruct the truth, others' livelihood, others' way of life, others' land, the environment, our collective resources, or our collective future to get their free handout.

Perhaps you should look into other ways to scam the system for a buck and leave the rest of us the hell out of it. Then the rest of us are happy, and you get paid for nothing, so we should all be satisfied.

Obie, reducks.

You stated that we "want to obstruct the truth and the means to it, our livelihood, our way of life, our land, our resources, our environment, and our future so you can make a quick easy dollar just like a welfare queen." What you decry so passionately, Obie, sounds a lot like capitalism (an economic system in which investment in and ownership of the means of production, distribution, and exchange of wealth is made and maintained chiefly by private individuals or corporations, especially as contrasted to cooperatively or state-owned means of wealth).

Obie's post above tells it all. He calls it "our land" and "our resources". It all sounds a tad like Communism (a theory or system of social organization based on the holding of all property in common, actual ownership being ascribed to the community as a whole or to the state.) Now we have at least found where we disagree. You are Communist, TheHick and TheNatural are Capitalists. You espouse your beliefs and we will do the same with ours. We will never agree, however, to your communistic iterpretation of land ownership.

I do understand

some of why you feel as you do. Wouldn't we all like absolute freedom? Wouldn't that be ideal? Sure, on an individual basis. But we are not alone. Unfortunately, the fact is there are too many of us and the world cannot sustain the status quo. So we need to think not just of ourselves if we want the best for ourselves, our families, and our neighbors in the future. I am most certainly NOT communist; but just as unrestrained pure hardcore leftist communism is unsustainable, equally so is the brand of unrestrained pure hardcore right-wing conservative capitalism and/or libertarianism that you espouse. I alsways find it ironic when the most outlandishly conservative folks use a broad brush to paint anything they disagree with as "communist" and therefore infinitely unrealistic, while imagining that their equally outrageous unrealistic capitalist extremist conservative ideals are somehow perfectly practical and relevant! The fact is, neither extreme ever actually works. But if it makes you feel good, I guess you're free to call the open-minded, forward thinking moderates "commies" and continue kidding yourself into denial.

YOu feel that your right to use your land for capitalistic gain trumps any rights of those around you, and responsiblilty for the future of our soceity, economy, health, climate, environment, etc. So, how does one quantifiable entity for one individual, or one group of individuals, belonging only to the current generation, trump the rights of the rest of the populace moving forward over every generation yet to come? Please explain (not that you will, every time I get you with a "tough" question you just ignore it and make a few outrageous statements or call a few names to try to divert attention).

You fear the loss of our rights by usurption through law; I fear the loss of our rights by social, economic and environmental breakdown that will render our "rights" utterly irrelevant as we move into a struggle just to survive. Eventually if we proceed down your path of choice, your gas check will do you no damn good, your pile of currency will be worthless (or stolen) and you will be physically fighting day in and day out over the same precious resources that we all want. Or we can think about this and entertain the possibilty that what we all have to gain is worth infinitely more than a quick easy dollar for a few. Not that I expect you to comprehend, you will do anything for that dollar. Reminds me of an old joke ending in "cause he needed the money", only you'll do it just because you WANT the money.

And you're still not answering any of the real questions. Again. Still. ZZZzzzzzzzz.......

Your reluctance is understandable.

Few Americans are willing to concede that their political leanings are toward communism, or at least that philosophy. Still, you do feel that land ownership is very limited in rights and the government must always be kind and gentle. It must aid and assist every tree frog and snail in the country. It must create all sorts of laws so that no one, anywhere is unhappy or uncomfortable. There is a price for all of this. We have lost much of our manufacturing because of big brother's desire to be sure everyone is safe and comfortable. Now China is pouring pollutants into the air, and it is in our air once it reaches the US. Mexico doesn't worry about OSHA and the EPA, or law of any kind, for that matter. We do not need to be just like China and Mexico, but we can do a lot more to encourage production and mining in the US. What good will pristine lands and water be if China takes them over and drills like hell with no thought to any ecology? This country needs to regain its vision, to become a country of makers and doers, and not a country of paper pushers and lawyers. Communist China does not adhere to any communist doctrine most of the time, but sometimes the US does, often because of lawyers and well meaning individuals with no grasp of how badly they are limitimg this nation.


but I actually agree with some of the sentiment you express. But I still do not agree with the "all for me and me for me" extremism that constitues everything you have ever said up until this post.

And I most certainly disagree with your feeling that anything short of anarchy, and land ownership as a complete unbounded unrestricted power, constitues "communism". You fail to see the irony in feeling that you should have the protection of law on your side to conduct any and all activities on your land while denying all other landowners and citizens and taxpayers the right to have their land and life be free of impacts and fallout from you. Liberty and Freedom are not rights limited to those with the most money or the most land. You label others communists while acting like some combination of a lawless gunslinger and a ruthless sole dictatorship. You throw the word "communism" around without realizaing that the robber-baron style unfiltered capitalism is just as bad and just as much of a dead-end road. You fear socialism like the devil himself, but think living in the United States of Big Oil (or should we now say "Big Fossil Fuel" to reflect the control the gas industry wants to wield over us as ou rnew dictators?) is paradise. You are so extremist in your views on individual rights and making money at any cost that even a person who is almost as likely to land on one side of the fence as the other on any given issue seems so threatening and foreign to your way of thinking that you view them as some kind of socialist leftist extremist. You want the government to protect your right to line your pockets while seeking to deny others protection of their quality of life, health, livelihood, and evironmental sustainability- as well as THEIR land rights. You put your own land rights above all else, yet see no problem with putting a well on your land to extract the bounty of the gas rights of your neighbor's property via your own. You wish to have the business that you believe will make you rich be given special privileges that do not apply to every other person or industry trying to simply make a buck. You say we must compete with China or lose our economy, yet do not concern yourself with the longterm viability of our local economy. You say "Now China is pouring pollutants into the air, and it is in our air once it reaches the US" while clamoring that we should be gung-ho in promoting an indsutrial activity and a fuel source that does a perfectly good job of pouring pollutants into our air, ground, and water right here in our own neighborhood. I say never mind China- let's at least protect our own little patch of earth! If we can't step up to that responsibility right here in our homes, CHina will be a lost cause.

Oh, and you keep dodging all of the quesions, so we are still to assume that you either do not own land anyway, or that the land you own is not in the Upper Delaware. Which is to say, lots of talk but no walk.

Our patch of the Earth?

I'll protect my patch of the earth by whatever means necessary, mostly from tyrants like you. Do what you want with your patch, communist.

so instead of giving us any reason to justify

gas drilling, since there is none, you resort to just simply labelling those who disagree communists. The true mark of the religious right or of greedy corporate capitalists - when confounded by science or when anyone else's freedom threatens to get in the way of their sacred dollar or their deeply ingrained belief that they must be right to the exclusion of anything else, just start calling names and yelling.

Tyrants? You must have me confused with the oil/gas bosses. Yet again you throw names that are in fact descriptive of yourself, those you protect, or those you've sold out to. And yet again, you fail to give us any reason to justify satiating your self-righteous narcisstic greed. As long as you are the one benefitting, you will preach tyranny, fascism, special interests, corruption, erosion of land rights, and erosion of individual freedom until the cows come home. You speak negatively of China while envsioning an economic paradise that is codependent upon being like them. So how do you rationalize wishing to emulate a communist economy? Simply by saying that your brand of economy is only communist on the supply side, forcing your will down the throats of the people even if they do not demand the product you're selling? How is taking gas from someone else's land and then turning around and distributing it to others not communism in your warped world? Simply because you capitalistically are the one profiting from seling something that is not yours? Do you not realize that extremism on either the left or the right often comes very close to completing the circle, just with different reasons and different nomenclature?

(more hypothetical questioning, since you and Natural have never answered any of the questions; it's understandable though, I'm sure you've never had to answer questions about anything other than yourselves since that is all you concern yourselves with, and even if you know the answers they are probably pretty unsettling for you)

YOu never can produce any supporting arguments for the claims of safety, the claims of protection of the economy, the claims of advantages for local people, the claims that subsidizing your beloved industry with our tax dollars will somehow be our salvation- or for that matter, that you even live in the Delaware Valley (which anecdotal evidence seems to support that you do not). And wherever your patch of the earth may be, you're allowing it to be trampled so you've done a pretty crappy job of protecting it. When I say "patch of the earth" I don't mean your bank account.

I am the consumate sentinel

My patch of the earth and bank account and I are inseparable, much to your disappointment.

still living up to the well earned rep

of dodging every question anyone ever asks you.

It must be tough to either not have answers for yourself, or not like them.

And your last response is no surprise from someone who puts money above any and all else. You repatedly expose yourself as caring about no one and no thing other than yourself and money, this is just another example of you proving it.

A quick check on the rep

Number one, yep!

I also care about my land and property rights and those of my neighbors. You shan't have them and that seems to upset you. Too bad.

The only thing

that upsets me is that certain landowners think of themselves as their own little society which is free to overrun the rights and properties of other landowners and other human beings.

You have a very warped one-sided self-serving idea of "land rights", that's all. Put the shoe on the other foot and we'll see what song you'd sing when other's "property rights" threaten your way of life, quality of life, property value, personal health or safety, or livelihood. Of course that ignores any examples related to "common good" or responsible use of resoruces, since you don't care about such things. So perhaps since the rest of us do care about these things, the only comparable example would be dumping our sewage and waste oil in the stream that feeds your pond, parking our fleet of vehicles along the road at teh end of your driveway every night, tossing our trash on your lawn as we drive by, doing donuts in the road in front of your house every night at 2 AM, or pushing for some type of activity that would destroy or make cost-prohibitive the means that you use to earn an income forcing you to find another job or relocate (for instance, massive second-home development, confiscatory regulation on whatever it is you do for work, drastically increased taxes to provide services for some while taking money from others, etc.) . Maybe set up some powerful spotlights on neighbroing proeprties that all shine directly on his house, and set them on a timer to alternately turn off and on all night long. Yes, let's have someone do all these things to Hick and then see what song he parrots and whether it still consists of " screw all y'all, we're all free to do whatever we want". By Hick's definition, since we never physically set foot on his property, we have therefore been entriely free and entirely correct to do any and all of these things and have never once done anything wrong unto him and he should be cordially accepting of each and every one of these examples.