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The F Word: Coal Company Shopping Spree

from The Huffington Post

Last week, I noted that rating agency Standard and Poors had upgraded Massey Energy from "hold" to a "buy." Massey's the company that owns the mine where 29 miners were killed in an explosion recently.

Now we find out that Standard and Poors were right: Massey's prospects are only going up -- in fact, they're on a shopping spree!

Perhaps they're just taking George W. Bush's advice from 2001 to heart: the best way to deal with a tragedy is to go shopping. Anyway, the Wall Street Journal reports that Massey completed a purchase of U.S. coal producer Cumberland Resources Corp. for $640 million in cash and 6.5 million of its shares.

One can't help feeling that while Massey's CEO may be on the outs -- there are mounting calls for his resignation -- the bigger problem's the coal industry itself. No fine's enough. And until we see some serious structural changes, the industry is going to continue doing what it has been doing: trading death for profit.

The F Word is a regular commentary by Laura Flanders, the host of GRITtv which broadcasts weekdays on satellite TV (Dish Network Ch. 9415 Free Speech TV) on cable, and online at and Support us by signing up for our podcast, and follow GRITtv or GRITlaura on

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Laura Flanders is the host of "GRIT TV" the new, news and culture discussion program aired daily on Free Speech TV (Dish Network ch. 9415) and online at the popular blog site Flanders also hosts RadioNation, on Air America (more...)

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