One Alabama businessman is throwing in his hat.
During a recent Birmingham, Alabama, public hearing, Coal Mine owner Ronnie Bryant listened to a room full of people air their concerns to federal officials about businesses allegedly polluting the drinking water and causing cases of cancer.
No matter how many regulations these business owners work - and pay - to comply with - they just get more roadblocks put in their way. Mining and drilling for oil have been villainized. So now one by one these businessmen will just shut out the lights, lock the door, and all the people who work for them will be out of a job.
“Nearly every day without fail…men stream to these [mining] operations looking for work in Walker County. They can’t pay their mortgage. They can’t pay their car note. They can’t feed their families. They don’t have health insurance. And as I stand here today, I just…you know…what’s the use? I got a permit to open up an underground coal mine that would employ probably 125 people. They’d be paid wages from $50,000 to $150,000 a year. We would consume probably $50 million to $60 million in consumables a year, putting more men to work. And my only idea today is to go home. What’s the use? I see these guys—I see them with tears in their eyes—looking for work. And if there’s so much opposition to these guys making a living, I feel like there’s no need in me putting out the effort to provide work for them. So…basically what I’ve decided is not to open the mine. I’m just quitting. Thank you.”
Atlas is indeed shrugging.
Now all those employees can just go on welfare... and we can import more coal from somewhere else.