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Robert Murray Uses Tragedy to Attack Unions

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Cross posted from my blog The Blog and the Bullet.

Mike Hall blogs about Robert Murray, the CEO of Murray Energy, which owns the mine of the six trapped (or possibly dead) Utah miners. The mine was a non-union mine and used an extremely unsafe method of mining called “retreat mining:”

Murray has also used the spotlight to:

  • Deny reports that a type of mining called retreat mining, that many safety experts warn adds danger to an already dangerous underground workplace, was being used at the Utah mine. But federal safety officials confirm retreat mining has been used at Crandall Creek.
  • Dispute scientists who say that seismographic readings at the time of the collapse came from the magnitude of the collapse, not an earthquake that caused the collapse.
  • Attack reporters and accuse them of posing questions provided by the Mine Workers (UMWA).
  • Rant against the UMWA and its leaders, saying the union wants organize his workforce and “want to damage Murray Energy, Utah American and the United States coal industry for their own motives.”

It’s not the first time Murray has drawn down on the UMWA. The relationship between Murray and the UMWA goes back to1988 when Murray purchased an Ohio coal mine that came with a 300-strong UMWA-represented workforce.

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