Blood on the Mountain

Blood on the Mountain

DVD - 2017
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Examines the economic and social plight of West Virginia coal miners. Focuses on the environmental despoilation caused by mining that inhabitants of West Virginia's coal county are forced to endure.
Publisher: New York, NY : Virgil Films, [2017]
Copyright Date: ©2017
Characteristics: video file,DVD video
digital,optical,surround,Dolby Digital 5.1
1 videodisc (93 min.) : sound, color with black and white sequences ; 4 3/4 in
Call Number: DVD 333.82209 BLO


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May 06, 2017

This documentary is a treasure trove of old archive photos and videos on the Appalachian coal industry: Mine owners, politics, abuse of bankruptcy law, mining regulations, pneumoconiosis (black lung) disease, underground mining, surface mining, old company towns, labor movements, environmental activism etc. that began with the Blair Mountain miners’ uprising in 1921 to the indictment of the CEO of Massey Coal on Nov 13, 2014.

For many generations, West Virginia people and their labor has provided cheap energy for the rest of USA, i.e. until competition from cheaper foreign sources in the global market, the push of renewable energy, understanding of the environmental damage and health risks in the coal mining and coal fired power plant emissions. The big economic question during the 2016 POTUS race was what and how to help those miners left in the wake, a question that President Lincoln also pondered over 150 years ago:
President Lincoln, born in Kentucky, as described in a 1916 article by Morris Lombard “The Great Memorial to Lincoln” (The National Magazine - Volume 43 - Page 927)
-- When he stood, with General O. O. Howard, before a map, and pointed out a site at the mountainous intersection of Tennessee, Virginia and Kentucky, he manifested in manner and in words a peculiar tenderness toward the people of that mountain region, and insisted that here were people who needed the right kind of help to help themselves. His largeness of heart inspired the vision of the future. …

More recent news headlines on the Coal Company shenanigans:
“Jan 19, 2016 - Feds object to bankrupt coal company's $11.9M in executive bonuses” and
“Apr 3, 2017 - U.S. coal miner Peabody Energy Corp said it had emerged from Chapter 11 protection” and
"May 5, 2017 - As part of the $1.1 trillion spending bill just passed by Congress, Congressional leaders have reached a deal to extend healthcare for over 22,600 retired coal miners and their families who were set to lose these benefits at the end of April. These miners, who in many cases worked for decades in dangerous conditions, were promised these benefits by coal companies and Congress — when coal companies declared bankruptcy, they stopped contributing to their workers healthcare funds."


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