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Beyond Coal movement to hold a rally Wednesday night

The University of Kentucky’s Beyond Coal movement will hold a rally Wednesday to ask UK to cut ties with the coal industry, according to The Lexington Herald-Leader. The group is asking UK to remove the coal industry from sponsorships, the same way the university rejects sponsorships from alcohol and tobacco companies.

Oscar Combs isn’t a fan…

Rally scheduled to pressure UK Athletics to cut ties with coal industry

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

123 Comments for Beyond Coal movement to hold a rally Wednesday night

  1. Chris
    7:06 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Basketball season tickets for sale. Face value. Section 211, row BB. [email protected]

  2. Ridge Runner
    7:07 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    People and their agenda’s..


  3. Jill Massey
    7:09 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    This is an example of the liberal crap that is destroying our country. Death to all of them and I do mean ALL of them.

  4. UKBlue
    7:12 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Yea this isn’t going to happen !! The coal industry is already way down, Obama goal is to kill the coal industry for green energy that can’t stay in business, UK grad & donor Joe Craft runs the Alliance Resource Partners, L.P., colleges are scrambling to raise money since their budgets have been majorly slashed, this group must be insane to think this is going to happen.

  5. Travis
    7:13 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    If coal is so great, then why is every town or area that coal is mined in the armpit of the state with above average poverty, and a laundry list of other problems? Coal companies are the vampires of eastern ky, the suck the natural resources from the area leaving the place in ruins, while barley providing a living wage for the areas inhabitants. It seems they treat the university much like the residents of the minning towns. They buy them off with trinkets, except instead of a new satellite dish it’s buildings.

  6. Eastern KY Man
    7:13 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    The Day UK cuts ties to Coal is the day me and my family stop supporting the University of Kentucky. Oscar is right someone needs to tell Mr. New York to go back home and mind his own.

  7. Jill Massey is hateful and illinformed
    7:14 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Jill Massey, the next time you look in the mirror inform yourself that you are the problem.

  8. Spurious
    7:14 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I have known Oscar since he was a small child at Jeff, Kentucky. He is to be commended for his business and sports acumen. His political and support for coal, however, leave a lot to be desired. There is NO such thing as clean coal. The coal industry has laid waste to every state where coal has been mined to a degree that impacts the economy. Coal companies have historically paid so little tax as to be negligible. Over the decades coal companies have been owned by large steel companies and large oil companies. Those companies come from the same places Oscar says now stick their noses into Commonwealth business. Stick to sports Oscar.

  9. Walter L
    7:15 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I think that we should have a cookout and serve these protesters some spotted owl while they stand in the dard when the lights go out.

  10. DCCat
    7:18 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I love me some Oscar Combs.

  11. Walter L
    7:19 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Spurious, what’s up? You aren’t spending enough for that clean gasoline engine that you are driving that is now tipping the scales at $4.00 a gallon?

    There is NO such thing as clean gasoline engine exhaust but, you will drive to work in the morning, won’t you?

  12. westerncat
    7:19 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    This is nothing but liveral crap. We don’t need outsiders killing our state. Many people make thier living on coal. This is Obamaism at it best. People need to wake up.

  13. COALCAT1
    7:21 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    TRAVIS if we are the armpit of the state then you are the a$$ cut our coal severance funding off from unappreciative Lexington and Louisville and see what you think. btw a low earning coal miner averages 60,000 btw maybe we should never spend another dollar in the triangle . People like you deserve obama.

  14. Walter L
    7:21 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Everybody swear to ride a bicycle and snd read by candle light and I’ll cosider breaking the economy in Kentucky.

  15. FeedMeSeymour
    7:21 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I don’t know about eastern KY coal, but western KY coal makes our economy work. The coal severance money which comes to my county is invaluable. I agree with Oscar.

  16. Teabaggers are fascists
    7:21 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    3. Typical ugly teabagger. What many people don’t realize is that President Obama has issued more drilling permits (particularly natural gas) in 3 1/2 years than all eight of GWB. And now with the “fracking boom”, coal is not nearly as economical any longer for use in electricity generation. But of course, lets not confuse the right wingers with facts…it might differ from THEIR true agenda.

  17. Mike
    7:24 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Drew……why r u posting this here? We have got more important fish to fry with articulating our collective displeasure with the performance of the coaching staff and defensive team during the Papa John’s Beatdown.

  18. Brian
    7:24 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    From the beginning the coal industry has exploited Kentuckians, destroying lives, communities and now entire mountains that God put on this planet for purposes other than the enrichment of northerners who’ve never stepped foot in this state. It’s sad to see this latest generation spouting the typical lies they’ve been programmed to think, and it’s past time for all Kentuckians to start to wake up to the evils of the coal industry. I’d love nothing more than for one of our college students that happen to play on our basketball team to stand up as a campus leader against all of the ills that the coal industry has heaped on this state.

  19. CatFan4444
    7:26 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Wow, surprised how many readers on this site are anti coal. I have mixed feelings but am not totally anti coal. You can’t just totally stop using coal all together. A mix of coal and nature gas would be a nice mix. Anyway, it’s a sports site so my thoughts on yesterday’s debacal, UK is in deep trouble and so is Joker. Am I in the 10% of the UK fan base that would like to see someone like Petrino get a second chance at UK?? You bet your a$$ I am. Mitch better be looking over his shoulder as well. Time to take football seriously. You’ve skinned your knees over there for the last 40 years. Time to crap or get off the pot. Get to it UK.

  20. Travis
    7:27 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I hear a lot of people lashing out at outsiders, has it occured to them that the coal companies are the outsiders killing the state. I’ve never seen so many people so excited to participate in their own demise. At some point in my life I would love to see the people of this state rise up and demand better for themselves and their families, to not be content with being a little better than last in everything from healthcare to education.

  21. Brian
    7:27 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    How many people does it take to destroy a mountain? Under a dozen. A handful to plant the dynamite, drive the landmovers and scoop out the coal. Kentuckians should ask for more in exchange for mountains and ecosystems that are as rare and more beautiful than anything in any museum on this planet.

  22. Scott
    7:28 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    As an employee of the coal industry, maybe we should hold our own protest. How about we take the month of January off and let everyone freeze in the dark.

  23. Source
    7:29 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    @16 – this government website that shows new drilling permits on federal lands by year says you are wrong.

  24. CT Jr
    7:29 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I want to thank Jill Massey for the very intelligent contribution. What a moron.

    I have little sympathy for out of staters playing local politics, but isn’t most of the coal production in KY owned by out of state entities anyway? We end up in the middle regardless.

    Oscar may know basketball but in 30 years of reading him I have never gotten any impression he is qualified a bit to write about politics or economics.

  25. Dutch Moore
    7:30 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Oscar you may have something with that boycott! I think the folks from eastern would have a much better following than these so called intellects that have no idea what keeps there lights on. In a time we are paying 3.95 a gallon for gas is not a the time to attempt to put miners out of business! That’s all we would need,high gas prices along with doubling our electic bills. These folks are the ones that go to work at 8:00 in the morning and get off a 4:30,sponge off the workers all over this great state and get as much money in retirement as they do each and every week. Maggots at best!

  26. Brian
    7:30 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    20# Very well said. The profits of the coal industry have always FLOWED OUT of this state. To be grateful for the pittances they leave behind is simply pathetic, Kentucky.

  27. Emerson Biggins
    7:31 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Almost 50% of electricity in this country comes from coal! Come up with the solution to give us electricity at the same cost or lower and I’m on board, until then you might want to think about how your going to watch TV, run your computer, have lights on, etc. You get my point I hope. Lets not forget the amount of money it generates for our economy, money spent right here in Kentucky. Or we can continue to give billions of dollars (535 million to Solyndra and then claim bankruptcy) to alternative power companies. That hasn’t gone to well has it. Another form of waste. BIG GOVERNMENT = MORE WASTE!

  28. Owen
    7:32 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Boy, coal sure is great. Eastern and Western Kentucky sure have such great economies and are such wonderful places to live and work. They sure do help conserve the pristine environments out there as well.

    Coal is half the reason most of Kentucky sucks. It’s one of the most exploitative (whether it’s exploiting the workers or the environment) industries that has ever been and it really hasn’t gotten any better except for wages which are better than in the past, but still terrible considering the risk involved. It’s funny that coal has such a backing because I see coal barons driving around big cities in their Ferraris with Friends of Coal plates but the miners are out getting paid dogshit to risk their lives since it’s basically the best option they have in the middle of Appalachia.

  29. Beavis
    7:34 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Roughly half the energy produced in this country is from coal fired power plants. How are you going to replace that ? Don’t say wind and solar,,,thats a damn joke. You people that claim the coal industry is ruining the country,,,,why don’t you go talk to people in the mining industry in Eastern Kentucky that have lost their jobs and are struggling to make ends meet. Talk to the people that supply products,,,food,,,insurance,,, in short,,,anyone that supplies the coal industry. The people in Eastern Kentucky are paying a high price for being stylish and green. Ben Chandler can stick Cap and Trade where it does not shine.

  30. Brian
    7:35 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    All of you geniuses spouting the benefits of coal need to realize that there are other ways to generate electricity. Even nuclear does less damage than coal. Climate change is a fact. We’re all paying for it, and these costs are just starting. The costs of burning coal aren’t captured in our electric bills, but we do pay them for everything from higher medical bills to higher food costs to lost mountains. The people who so glibly and coarsely look over the fact that we’re destroying mountains need to recognize what’s lost when we destroy a mountain that took millions of years to form.

  31. CatFan4444
    7:37 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Isn’t that how most businesses work. The white collars push pencils and look good while the blue collars get crapped on and underpaid but keep the business flowing?? You politically correct goobers.

  32. Better think it Over
    7:38 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Does this mean I have to get rid of my computer made with petroleum based products and powered by coal fired electricity? Does the basketball team have to move out of the new coal sponsored facilities? The opponents of coal may want to get in their gasoline powered cars and go to Frankfort to complain to Brashear, about having a hand in undoing all their great work, by helping in that recent E.K.Y. 7 billion dollar, 25 year coal contract that was just signed with India.

  33. Obama
    7:39 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Please vote for me. Not only will I get rid of coal (and put every coal dude in jail and take their money) – I will also get rid of this Oscar Combs fella. Who the hell does he think he is to speak his mind. There is NO SUCH THING as free speech anymore!

  34. fat bearded intensity
    7:39 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Oscar Combs is a true legend, wrong and out of touch, lashing out like Clint Eastwood in a furniture store, yet a legend nonetheless. Love ya, Oscar.

  35. Jbooth
    7:39 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Cant believe the stupidity posted above. Coal money from Eastern KY built Lexington. You better watch the name calling buddy. If that money was kept in Eastern Ky you just might be the armpit!!

  36. Brian
    7:41 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    One of the greatest living Kentuckians, Wendell Berry, disassociated himself UK because of its servitude to coal. If that doesn’t make some of you think twice, then I suggest you read some of Mr. Berry’s work because I assure you he’s on the side of Kentucky and its people.

  37. fat bearded intensity
    7:41 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    33. That’s President Obama, refer to the President as such.

  38. Roland
    7:43 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    1st it was hemp. (Kentucky grows the best hemp) Then it was tobacco. Now coal. Calif. (among many other states)solving their budget problems by legalizing a form of hemp (for medical reasons.))

  39. Beavis
    7:44 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    # 30,,,,what is your alternative ? I have seen first hand what the mining industry does to the land and I am not a fan of it. However,,,the damn liberals want to just do away with the industry without something to replace it. Green may be the thing in the future but right now coal is what keeps your AC running.

  40. Brian
    7:45 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    @Emerson Biggins: Genius, how many billions in tax dollars do we give away to coal, gas and oil companies that are already making billions in profits? Do you know? Find out and you might feel a stupid for spouting that absolute pittance associated with Soylandra.

  41. sangaman
    7:45 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    KSR comments certainly not the best place for this debate, but…

    I like a format where coal companies, and any other industry that conclusively creates negative externalities for US citizens (pollution, noise, etc…), should be taxed proportionally to the amount of harm they cause.

    I don’t mind coal companies per se, but I do mind if they damage the environment or health of US citizens without taking responsibility for that damage.

    I’m no expert on the subject, but it’s my understanding that coal companies have pretty lucrative terms at the moment for their extraction activities thanks largely to successful lobbying.

  42. Tax Payer
    7:46 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Damn, I hate all these liberal pukes. I wish they would all get a darn job and move out of their parents house. I bet they wont even tell mom and dad where they are going Wednesday night.

    Maybe we should show up and hold a counter protest. Bet they wouldn’t even get out of their gas powered cars if they saw 10,000 of us standing against them.

  43. kes
    7:47 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    coal is a thing of the past, get used to it!

  44. Brian
    7:49 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    39, first of all, you can lay of the “damn liberals” crap. If you say you’re not a fan of what coal does to our land and people, then I suggest you think on that more because that should be at the forefront of your thoughts. As for the alternative? Even nuclear energy is less of a nightmare than than all of the ills that stem directly from the coal industry.

  45. Brian
    7:50 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    42. The feeling’s mutual.

  46. Beavis
    7:50 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    # 41,,,,yep tax the hell out of the coal companies and see how high your electric bill goes. In addition you will give away one of the competitive advantages Kentucky has over other states,,,cheap energy. Drive to Gallatin County and look at all the industry clustered around the power plant there and while you are at it drive by Georgetown and say good by to the Toyota plant when their utility bills skyrocket.

  47. dave
    7:50 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    this is a sports blog.
    please do not report on such polarizing issues while only attaching comments regarding those issues made by another KY sports blogger who, at best, is completely unqualified to comment on the situation.
    at least link articles/sites where ppl could actually read the entire issue at hand, or simply don’t mention it at all.

  48. ukbluerules
    7:51 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    So sad to see so many liberals wanting to put Kentuckians out of work. Sad times.

  49. Brian
    7:52 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    41. I agree. As it stands, if the coal industry paid for its negative externalities, i.e., the *actual costs it creates*, there would be no coal industry. Presently, the coal industry is privately profitable and publicly disastrous.

  50. Dutch Moore
    7:53 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I remember when coal was king in my county of Harlan…there were very few people that were unemployed during that time! When coal went on the decline many made exit from eastern Ky. Rather than bring industry in the region, federal and state government bought welfare to the area. Many have learned to live on what the government sends them each month. They vote the way goverment wants them to and many jerk the voting lever so hard that they rooster feathers fly when they vote. If you know what I mean! On the other hand my father was a coal miner. We always had food on the table and he never had to take a handout. He started in the mines at the age of 17, worked 32 years and died at the age of 49. If the the person that posted the picture of the miner at the top of this page was trying to belittle the miner,I want to tell you this! I’ll be at your chicken shit meeting and I’ll be in your face and this you can believe!

  51. Beavis
    7:53 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    How long does it take to build a nuclear power plant ? On top of that what do you do with the waste from the plant ? I am still waiting for a decent alternative to coal.

  52. Brian
    7:54 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    46. Genius, you are already paying coal’s costs. Get that through your head. It’s not on your electricity bill, but it’s there.

  53. Beavis
    7:57 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Thats right,,,you do not have an alternative

  54. Usernametaken
    7:57 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    If the coal companies would treat their workers like human beings I would be a little more offended by this protest. As an aside, the state government of Kentucky has no one to blame but itself for staying stuck in the past and not changing with the times and developing new industries.

  55. Jarweed
    7:58 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    41 brings up a valid point. Who pays for the environmental hazards of coal mining? Everyone does. You pay through increased water and air pollution – the coal companies pass that off to you! The cost of climate change will not be paid by coal companies. Long after they’re gone, we will still be paying that cost.

  56. Brian
    7:58 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Beavis, if you think Kentucky has profited from its current set up of being exploited, then I suggest you travel around the country a bit. Kentucky could with a little less help from Big Coal, or unless you’ve noticed we only have other southern states to thank when we happen not to be ranked at the bottom in health or education.

  57. Dear UL and IU fans, We are national champions; you are not. The end.
    7:58 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I have to admit, it kind of sucks how many air quality alerts happen in Louisville. Shitty air does impact our lives. And yeah, I’m a guy who puts more miles on my bicycle than my car.

  58. Allen on Whitehall
    7:59 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I live in Clay County and I know coal miners (some in their mid to late 20s) who make over $80,000.00 a year in the coal mines. That is big money down our way and I say as long as its in the ground, mine it anyway you can.

  59. Brian
    8:02 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    53. You plainly know nothing about how the energy infrastructure in this country works.

  60. MtnCat
    8:02 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Coal is a necessity. Nothing yet to take it’s place.

  61. sangaman
    8:04 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    #46 That’s not what I said :). Consider it this way, in a hypothetical situation:

    Company X opens a factory in Springfield, USA. They dump pollution in the river, and the pollution is shown to have increased the health care costs of the town of Springfield by $1,000,000. Who should pay for that additional health care cost? The people who get sick? The taxpayers of Springfield and/or the USA? I say neither should, since they were not responsible for the damage. Company X is responsible for the additional health care cost, and they should be the ones paying for it, in my opinion.

    It’s rarely that cut and dry but I hope you see my point.

    If a business cannot operate profitably without taking responsibility for the damages and externalities it causes, I would argue that it is not a business model that should stay afloat. Just how any other business has to close down if it turns out it is unprofitable.

    As for whether UK should stop accepting sponsorship from the coal industry… That is a different story. I’m not sure how I feel about that.

  62. Emerson Biggins
    8:04 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    @ Brian: Thanks for the compliment, I am a Genius. I was making a reference to one of the many millions if not billions given to Solar power companies over the past few years that have since gone BANKRUPT, (meaning they aren’t around and aren’t creating JOBS or POWER) Yes, I do know that oil, coal, and gas companies get tax breaks, and yes they make billions, but they also spend billions. Their profit margin is not nearly what you might think it is and it’s not as much as Apple, but Apple gave us an I-Phone, I-Pod, and I-Pad so thats okay. We should just have a war on all the oil, gas, and coal companies, I’m sure we’ll all end up in a better place. Good luck to ya.

  63. markp
    8:05 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    This is not an energy alternative but legalizing the growth of hemp would help the economy in KY by leaps and bounds. Strip mining of mountains is criminal, period. But we do need energy and should use coal, in a more environmentally friendly way, until a viable alternative is here.

  64. Allen on Whitehall
    8:08 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    @63. I guess you are referring to “mountain top removal”. I would love for anyone who laments and bemoans Mountain Top removal to actually come down to Eastern Kentucky and travel to Hazard or Leslie County and look at huge areas of acreage where mountain top removal has been carried out over 10 to 20 years ago. It is a paradise for wildlife and in many cases, it is the most useable land in a particular county. Mountain top removal is one of many ways to mine for coal and as long as it puts money in the pockets of those employed by the industry and benefits the area, then keep on removing the mountain tops.

  65. Sittin' Bull
    8:12 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Go Oscar! We got ur back!

  66. SexnNursinHomes
    8:15 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Does coal hurt children’s lungs?

  67. SexnNursinHomes
    8:16 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Just wanna say, they govt has been keeping it secret. but crack cocaine is free energy. Tesla. Google it.

  68. Brandon B
    8:18 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Man, I am a nuteral guy when it comes to politics and the like but wow, some of you are quacks! I will probably just vote for Obama to get a laugh out of these wing nuts! Joe the Plummer and now “Mr. New York”. Death to all liberals? Sounds a little like the Taliban… Right wing nuts always ruin it for the normal ones. Good luck with that…

  69. DavisBrow
    8:20 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    64. Having been to the mountains several times and having family there, I can tell you your statement is a blatant lie. Not only is the wildlife affected, but all watersheds around it (remember science, when they taught you how water always makes its way back masses of water?) are contaminated. Explosions put all sorts of harmful chemicals in the air. Stop calling scientific proof liberal, because it is that proof that has saved someone in your families life at some point due to medicine. This call for a boycott is just one group stating their opinion, and for all you Constitution thumpers out there remember the First Amendment. I love Oscar, but he is terribly wrong that this is crucifying miners. It is unfortunate that living conditions dictate that people in the area have to mine for a living, because the companies are what need to be boycotted. They are corrupt and have no care for their workers (look into their safety violations, they all have them). That is what this boycott is about.

  70. DEasy
    8:24 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    This is completely ridiculous. Coal runs our entire state. Without the coal industry thousands of people would be jobless in some of the most rural parts of our state. Also, people have this view of coal mining that is outdated. With all the regulations on reclamation and even getting a mine permit, the environment is left in almost exactly the same condition as before it was mined. Anyone who lives in this state and actually believes that shutting down the coal industry is an idiot. Shut it down and watch what happens to our state. Green this and Green that, what about the actual people this affects and drives into poverty? What a joke.

  71. DEasy
    8:27 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    69.) I worked at Wal-mart for 3 years in college and we had safety violations almost everyday. Restaurants have health code violations all the time… are they corrupt and destroying their workers lives? Shut up.

  72. DEasy
    8:28 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    69.) Has been to the mountains “several times” he obviously knows what’s going on…

  73. Allen on Whitehall
    8:28 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    @64, I may be a lot of things, but a liar is not one of them. You have been to the mountains “several times”, well my friend, I live in them. You come down and drive with me over to Leslie and Perry Counties and spend an hour touring the mountain top removal, if you persist in your opinion, then that is your right. Until then, keep pumping the electricity through the wires in your domicile and live in your ivory tower.

    And While I am on the subject, I wonder how many of these folks who lament and bemoan coal mining, and wring their hands over the damage to the environment, are the same people who could care less that over 4,000 babies are killed in this Country every day via abortion.

  74. HackRichards
    8:31 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Oscar is RIGHT on the MONEY!!!

  75. UKfanFelicia
    8:34 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Let me ask you all that are against coal… you take away the jobs that coal provides for this state and replace it with what??? Yeah I don’t see any other big industries pulling in and setting up shop..ohh thats right we might be able to get some call centers that still operate in U.S. I know better yet without the jobs coal provides let’s all just become more “pillbillies”

  76. Humble Coal Miner
    8:36 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    My family has survived 4 generations from making a living on coal. God has blessed Eastern Kentucky with coal, and he has blessed my family to be a part of it. If coal dissapears, then so does my families well being and lively hood. When coal is banned, eastern KY will become 10x more poor. Lexington, as well as every other city will suffer.

  77. HackRichards
    8:37 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I live here. Floyd County. I love the reclaimed strip lands. Full of wildlife Flora & Fauna. Great 4 wheelin’ entertainment as well. Great Camping & Hiking. Great for gathering firewood for the winter! Darn SHAME that we have to ship 9 million tons a year to India and cannot burn it ourselves to help keep our energy costs low. Al Gore/G.E./ & other Liberals want the GREEN MONEY (Carbon Credits, solar panels, light bulbs) and don’t care a crap about our environment. It is only a front.

  78. DavisBrow
    8:37 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    71. I am sure your part time job at Walmart did more to suck your expectations in humanity than EVER threatened your life. Try going under ground every day that you work in a mine that may or may not be up to code. And if it falls on you? Good luck to your family ever seeing a dime. If you think I am kidding, look up the litigation that occurred in West Virginia in 2010. I am not saying to shut the industry immediately down. Yes, the state would crumple. But why has no other industry ever came to EKY? How about the fact that coal has money in the pockets of everyone to make sure it doesn’t happen. To suggest that more research should go into alternative energy and more investments should go into industry in the area is stupid? I am sorry if I want to see my neighbors be able to work a job that doesn’t put them at risk every day because their company doesn’t want to shell out the proper money to keep them safe. I am sorry if I want my children and grandchildren to be able to admire the beautiful landscapes that my family comes from. I am sorry if I want my children and grandchildren, and why not even YOUR children and grandchildren be able to have clean air and stable climates to live in. Because God forbid you not get your way so that your future generations can have the opportunity to live a safe and comfortable life.

  79. A is for abortion
    8:41 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    @73, well of the 4,000 abortions daily I would say a good portion are a gift to our state and country. We will not have to pay Medicaid and welfare for a child who for 18 years who will no doubt continue the same cycle as her wonderful parents. God bless America!

  80. matt brings
    8:43 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    matt brings all the libs to the yard.

    waaaaahhhh coal hurts environment…
    waaaaahhhhh there is no clean coal…
    waaahhhhhh queue up next liberal talking point…

    grow up – none of you know what you are talking about – you are just repeating what everyone has told you to say..

  81. DEasy
    8:44 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    78.) I work for a coal company. I’ve been underground, my Dad has worked in coal for 40 years, my grandfather was coal miner. Coal has always taken care of my family and the house I grew up in was built on stripped land. That’s fine if you want to research whatever you want, but to suggest that our state university cut ties with the driving force of our economy is completely ridiculous and ignorant.

  82. BBN
    8:45 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    If UK refuses to accept donations and sponsorships from the coal industry, how many donors are left to support the athletic programs? Lexington is not home to enough large multinational corporations that would support the school. Further, the thoroughbred horse industry gives very little to UK athletics. If we shut out one of the very few sponsors we have by cutting ties with the coal industry, where will the financial support come from? UK athletics are already in a very tight spot as it is. As Oscar Combs has said many times (even on the KSR radio show) the financial situation for UK athletics is not sustainable long term. Why make it harder than it already is?

  83. AlGore
    8:45 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Right ON Number 77

  84. msnthrop
    8:46 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    There are only 19,000 people who mine coal…that is 1% of the state 1.9 million jobs…granted miners are exceptionally important to a couple of Eastern Ky counties, but it is a drop in the bucket state wide. And no…the taxes coal companies pay the state are actually less that the taxes the state spends to maintain roads for coal trucks, provide long term healthcare for sick miners, and clean up the environmental mess coal mining causes…the whole industry is subsidized by your tax dollars.

    Another thing…anyone here ever heard of Moore’s Law…it relates to the speed of computer chips or the number of transistors on an integrated circuit…well computer speed has been improving at an exponential rate since the late 70’s making all kinds of things possible, like your little smart phones…why bring this up, well the efficiency of solar panels is on the same trajectory and solar parity with current electrical generation sources will occur for everyone in the US within 25 years ($300 per watt in 1956 to $50 per watt in the 1970s to $10 in the 90s to $1.05 a watt today.)…it won’t be long before all fossil fuels will just cost more than solar and wind and it won’t make sense to use them anymore…how can anyone say that will be a bad thing…technology changes, get used to it kids.

  85. Who Cares
    8:58 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Coal is the ruination of eastern Ky but who cares,they’re all UK fans anyway.

  86. JR
    9:00 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Go get em Oscar. What Im not getting is its okay for U of LOL to take money from an alcohol company like Makers Mark and no one says a thing. Everyones a politician or a hypocrite this year.

  87. markymark
    9:02 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    We should be having a discussion in this state about diversifying the economy of the coal counties. Having communities so dependent on a few big, international corporations that undertake operations that are by their very nature dirty, unsafe, and environmentally harmful is not an optimal strategy. The discussion needs to be bigger than ending the coal economy — it should be about how we replace it with other more home-grown, sustainable industries.

  88. Dale Field
    9:02 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    When alternative energy is able to provide the needs of our families and the businesses that provide jobs at a reasonable cost I think most people would be happy.
    However the nuts when think that time is now is either supported by the government or their Daddies. We still have a long way to go, people’s homes need to be heated, we do use automobiles so fossil fuels are needed.
    In November we have a chance to stop this madness by getting BHO out of office. He said in 2007 once in office he would not make burning coal illegal but would make it so expensive coal fired plants would go broke, at least he told the truth about that.

  89. markymark
    9:04 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    If 19,000 is right — UPS has more than 20,000 full-time employees in Jefferson County for reference.

  90. Death to Liberals
    9:06 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Beyond Coal? Really? This is Kentucky.

    Here is a list of failed solar companies backed by Obama:

  91. JBR
    9:15 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    It is so funny to see all the uneducated people whining all of the time…let me ask this question…if coal is so great, then why is eastern kentucky the most uneducated, poor, unhealthy, fat,etc region in the entire country, not to mention state. Face it, this is typical elitist brainwashing…the coal company owners pimp their business to make themselves money…Oscar is old and uninformed. More of the same pro-business conservative crap…the rich get richer, and the poor slave away on their meager salary to support the old men at the top.

  92. RKA
    9:23 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I’m all for coal it’s a huge boom to the commonwealth. I’m also for much improved scrubbers for the companies that use Coal. Gotta look at both sides people.

  93. John
    9:26 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Thank you #91. Very well said. The uneducated people fight for things that are not even in THEIR best interest. After reading so many dumb post, yours gives me some hope(along with Brian’s and sangamans). #3 Death to all liberals? What is wrong with you people. Too much Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck and not enough education.

  94. Zach Morris
    9:58 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    It amazes me that so many people have such a strong opinion on a subject that they have minimal first hand knowledge of. Those bitching about “destroying mountains,’ do you think all these windmills are going to float above the ground and not have an impact on the ecosystem? That strip mall you go to everyday for your Starbucks used to be undeveloped too, you know.

  95. Billy
    10:02 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    They had this “protest” last year, however, 30 mining engineering students showed up and the two fair skinned boys and three nappy headed feminist quickly changed their minds. I guess the Sierra club needs to look for stronger tree huggers to pay off…

  96. SoCal Will
    10:04 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Uhhh, AT&T is headquartered in Dallas and the CEO is an Oklahoman.

  97. Gary
    10:35 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Its these assholes that want to decide how you and I live our life. Its always something. They wont run out of things to protest about till this world ends….then they will protest that. So America…give up your coal, your gasoline, fast food, cigs, right to pray wherever you choose, your job to an illegal alien, your guns, your right to discipline your child, right to send your kid to a neighborhood school so he doesnt have to spend hours on a bus……get the idea????????

  98. Big Daddy D
    10:41 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    First of all I wanna say this article has no place on KSR. It is not sports it is completely political and this is not the soap box for such issues. I don’t come to this website to read about my job. Like many fans we use this website as an escape from our daily routine. So please KSR staff let’s keep this website on track.

    Second of all coal bashers. Coal isn’t going anywhere for a really long time. I worked at the largest surface coal mine in America and hate to tell you but next year we are slated to ship 113 million tons. So obviously demand and price are more important than enviromentally friendly. Also did you all know that the beyond coalr campaign is a direct product of Chesapeake Energy one of the largest natural gas producers.

    Either way I don’t think this is going to amounts to much coal has been good to this university. It has been great to me and my family. There aren’t many industries that pay over 70 gra nd starting out for just a 4 year degree. So go coal!!

    Again shame on you drew.franklin for bringing this crap here. It. Should be left in that garage of a paper the Lexington Herald.

  99. lol
    11:32 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    Anyone who think coal is a blessing to this state are probably descendants of the same morons who believed slavery was an economic savior for the south. It’s keeping your communities in the same uneducated, ass-backwards state of second-rate living, you goddamn hilljacks.

  100. Walter L
    11:53 pm September 3, 2012 Permalink

    I say, Bravo Drew!
    This is one of the most passionate threads that I have ever read on KSR.
    KSR talks about a multitude of issues other than UK athletics. I wouldn’t want to wear out this subject but, it’s still related to UK since some folks are going to campus to state their dislike for Coal, and coal is doing a lot for UK.
    There are too many things to mention here regarding what coal is doing for UK, this state and its people.
    Go Cats, and Go Coal!

  101. bluebee
    12:02 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    Who gives coal companies the right to mine anyhow? They never built that! The government created those mountains to just look pretty. Hey if all the liberals blow real hard at the count of 3 maybe that will produce enough wind energy to keep my bathroom light burning so i can finish wiping my bum.

  102. BCO
    1:11 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    5 – you are retarded and if you want ill gladly debunk each of your points…

  103. Common sense
    2:28 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    I see alot of “educated” people asking,”if coal is so great, why do the mountain towns suck”. Well ask yourself this. If there were no coal, how bad would it be in these towns. I would venture to say that towns would be worse off or nonexistent. Cheap power keeps the engine of capitalism going. But our misguided friends on the left can’t have that can they? They love it when the poor have to pay more for gas and energy. They serve mother Gaia. It’s funny that it’s now called “climate change”. What happened to global warming? Oh, yeah michael Mann and his hockey stick were debunked. So now it’s climate change. Duh!! Oh course the climate changes. It’s all just a big scheme to tax rich countries and redistribute wealth. Check out Al Gore’s net worth since he started promoting this crap. He’s now worth over 100 million. And what about his carbon footprint? He bought a house on the coast of Malibu for over 2 million. Now if the seas are a risin’, why would any man make an investment like that. Bullshite!! I say drill baby drill!!! Why won’t the empty chair Obama, sign the keystone pipeline? Cause he’s a fraud like most you greenies. Keep voting for the guy who was mentored by communist Frank Marshall Davis(whom he mentions 24 times as “frank” in one of his books) and went to bar-b-ques at Bill Ayers house. This is what happens when you vote for someone with no experience to be preezy. If he had been white and his name was Joe Smith, do you really think he would had a chance? Wake the fluke up America. We might not be able to survive four more years of “you didn’t build that”.

  104. JTGate1
    3:49 am September 4, 2012 Permalink


  105. foX
    6:16 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    Liberals aren’t very liberal. They don’t like liberty. They always want to tell you and others how to live your life. They are full of contradictions and are hypocrites at the very core. Crisis, crisis, crisis. So full of care and concern for others behavior. “Let’s get our jackboots on and put them on the necks of the wrongdoers. We’re the 99%!” Amazing how the libs cry out about the right (especially the religious right) wanting to legislate morality, but they want to control more than anyone. Liberty means the freedom to do wrong as well as right. It makes a messy world but a better one to live in.

  106. tdr76
    6:31 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    It is only Mr. N.Y. it is Mr. Obama who wants to break the back of Coal producers. U.K would be a fool to listen to this group of elitists who care nothing for the state, or its people. It for President Obama to get a real job in the private sector and this November I plan on doing my part to make it happen.

  107. NotOnMyStreet
    8:49 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    The truth I would venture to say is somewhere in the middle here. Coal helps some Kentuckians very much through the creation of industry and jobs. Worrying about who “owns” and takes the profits – whether in or out of state – is really of no concern (that’s an Obama way of thinking – who’s richest is our enemy despite creating thousands of jobs for others). Burning coal also affects the environment as does mining coal. No argument except to the extent of any negative effects.

    The bottom line is that coal is a relatively inexpensive energy source for a country that demands a lot of energy. There are no feasible alternatives at the moment. To argue otherwise, is hopeful and foolish. If there were, the coal industry (like the buggy whip industry) would disappear overnight. So, our (NY & KY) demand for energy keeps the coal industry humming along until it’s exhausted or real alternatives are available. Pointing fingers until that time is just sad – the fingers should be pointed at our political leaders (both sides) in a way that DEMANDS that they seek a viable alternative without fail. Ethanol was a joke. If it’s nuclear, start building! If something else, plant the damn flag on the moon and figure it out. It takes desire from the top to solve problems – and foolishness from the top occurs when problems are merely pointed out.

    Whether the University of Kentucky should cut ties with the coal industry is an outright joke. The coal industry – regardless of how you feel about it – is a big part of the Kentucky economy and its support of the University is appropriate. To argue that we don’t have ties with the Bourbon industry is laughable since game day sales are through the roof – and be careful not to knock over one of my collectibles please.

    If we eliminate coal, I’d vote to eliminate the high def screens at the stadium (Japanese goods), post touchdown fireworks (China), parking for foreign manufactured cars (yes, the GMs and Fords too) and all cell phones. The anti-social effect of cell phones is destroying our country and our ability to communicate and experience life.

    Or, if you want to look at supporters, let’s get rid of Kroger whose profits are not maintained in the state, Papa John’s pizza which contributes to the significant obesity problem in the state of Kentucky – with numerous “costs” as anti-coal supporters above enjoyed pointing out, and why not UPS while we’re burning all the books in the library – they use an inordinate amount of consumables creating a lot of pollution just to get a damn package from here to there overnight or in two days when the truth is you could email the communication or send a package by train although not as expedient.

    Let’s not be gullible or hypocrites. If you live on a coal street, you want to be left alone. If you don’t, you seem over righteous.

    When does basketball start?

  108. Chad Marcum
    9:05 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    Everyone on here thrashing the coal industry have completely lost their minds. They are making arguments that make no sense whatsoever. All the arguments they have to make are what their Liberal mommmies and daddies have thought them. Seriously, all the money is pumped out of state, how rediculous, hey, you ever heard of the coal serverence tax. That is what 2/3 of the counties in this state is operated on. With the economy that Obama has setup for us, without coal severence most of the counties in this state would be bankrupt. Nevertheless, there is no need to argue the situation with coal and the University. UK will NEVER, ever, never, ever cut it’s ties with the coal industry. Like it or not, it’s what pays thier salaries. And everyones been taught, don’t bite the hand that feed’s you.

  109. Tdr76
    10:03 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    It time for real ‘hope and change’ vote Romney @ Ryan and take back America!

  110. Buzzy Fernrod
    10:57 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    I think coal is great. (cough cough). Coal is what (cough cough) this state was built on. If you (cough cough) don’t like (cough cough) coal, then fire up your (cough cough) damn windmill. (cough)

  111. blueneck
    11:15 am September 4, 2012 Permalink

    If windmills are the answer then why aren’t energy companies building them if they are so great? Then we could put all these Eastern KY miners out of a job and on welfare.

    And yes there really is clean coal technology, most people don’t really understand it or which gases are truly the most harmful.

  112. Sheeeeiiit
    1:38 pm September 4, 2012 Permalink

    This is not a UK issue. It is not a US issue. It is not a liberal or democrat issue. It is a world/human issue. All countries use coal. To boil it down to UK and KY is not very intelligent. My family has been in the alternative energy industry for 30 years. Trust me when I say there is no real replacement for coal or oil. There will not be a replacement anytime soon either. Coal is dirty and it is harmful in many ways but we need it. The world needs it. To spend time on destroying the coal industry anywhere is idiotic. I say spend that energy in a lab or in a shop trying to INVENT a better option. People who protest against coal need to put thier brains and time to better use. If they want something else then go find a better way. Don’t waste time talking and holding signs. Get to work making a real option. It is not as easy as it sounds. Technology has advanced alot but we are not in a science fiction movie. We don’t have technology that can create energy without pollution. Until then we have coal. So if you want a solution, go invent one and quit waiting time protesting.

  113. Sheeeeiiit
    1:45 pm September 4, 2012 Permalink

    111 – one thing to add. Gasification of coal is promising. Many, including my companies have invested millions in this concept. There are many issues still to work out to make it successful like output. But It still will not satisfy close minded people who don’t want to use coal for any reason. I just wish some of these people would go out and try to be part of the solution. Instead they waste everyone’s time and energy bitching.

  114. In Defense of AL
    1:49 pm September 4, 2012 Permalink

    I would like to address all those who have given Al Gore a bad rap. I want you to know he and his father have long ties to a Lexington business, and Eastern Kentucky where I worked, Island Creek Coal Co., formerly located on Harrodsburg Rd. Through their long held ties with Occidental Petroleum Co. and its C.E.O. Armand Hammer Gore Sr. was the Chairman of the Board of Enoxy Coal Inc. the parent company of the Island Creek Company. Today if any ones want to go their large estate in South Carthage, TN using Google Earth you can still see the Zinc Strip Mine on Al Gore Jr. back 40. This was all put together through deals with Island Creek. This same team Hammer, and the Sr., Jr. Gore put one of our first transfers of technology together in the 80’s in the Island Creek to China coal deal. Think about it China probably only had shovels and mules, now they can take down a mountain faster than you can say Bernie Madoff. If anybody thinks is a joke, look it up.

  115. peter byck
    1:57 pm September 4, 2012 Permalink

    Coal miners think they’re going to lose their jobs. You make this economic case, but it doesn’t resonate with people who live paycheck to paycheck.

    Well, it does if you say hey, “would you rather be in a hole digging up coal, or would you rather be in a building, retrofitting it, and putting windows in it?” And there’s many, many, many, many, many more jobs to retrofit buildings then there ever are for coal jobs. And when you go to Kentucky and West Virgina, the poorest areas are the areas that they mine coal, so if mining coal is such a great economic deal for the people who do it, why is that?

  116. son of a disabled miner
    2:43 pm September 4, 2012 Permalink

    i grew up in harlan county where coal mining is easily the most available occupation. for many years the coal operators in this area have kept other industry from locating here. they accomplish that by buying up or controlling the land that could be used for any new businesses. this guarantees an easy labor pool to mine coal. until the coming of the UMWA union, people were treated like serfs. but, the bottom line is this is the only available work for most people who live here.

  117. Sheeeeiiit
    3:17 pm September 4, 2012 Permalink

    115 – that may be the most rediculous thing I’ve read in a long time. What building windows need retro fit in coal towns? Oh, you mean the skyscrapers in Harlan KY. Yes, there are tons of jobs retrofitting the skyscrapers in coal towns, wait no. Another thing, when did retrofitting a window on a building create electricity instead of coal? Your living in a dream world.

  118. JT
    4:54 pm September 4, 2012 Permalink

    @112 – Thank you!

  119. lol
    5:22 pm September 4, 2012 Permalink

    I sure hope 103 wasn’t being serious.

  120. Peter Byck
    6:20 pm September 4, 2012 Permalink

    117…. Your (you’re) the problem here. I’m pretty certain at least 60% of this country’s citizens are complete morons like yourself. Please open your mind to the fact that buildings account for 72 percent of total U.S. electricity consumption. If you make buildings more energy efficient then they’ll use less electricity. This is done by constructing new high-performance buildings and retro-fitting older buildings with better windows, insulation, and HVAC systems. OK so far? This in turn reduces the power needed to operate the facility and allows that electricity to be used somewhere else. The new windows (and other bits) create a lower power demand — essentially creating electricity as you say. The change should start on the demand side, not the supply side. 

  121. Nicholas Johnson
    5:13 am September 5, 2012 Permalink

    Instead of falling down the hole of anger and resentment stemming from ignorance and brainwashing by vested interests which has dominated the pro-coal posts above, I will just give props to the most level-headed and informed responses. Props to #24 CT Jr, #20 Travis, #41 sandgaman, #63 markp, #84 msnthrop, and #93 John.

    The opposite of props to #25 Dutch Moore and #3 Jill Massey. If you disagree with a policy position, bring evidence and reason to the table, not a murderous cry for “death to all of them.” (Although, I’m sure my peaceful words will have no impact on a stranger who has publicly called for my murder.)

  122. Sheeeeeiiit
    9:04 am September 5, 2012 Permalink

    120 – I’m not the problem pal. I’ve spent years in the alternative energy business. We have invented and put in place new technologies that help. I’m not saying that upgrading buildings is bad. I am saying it is a bandaid. I am also saying that you are way off to think you can trade coal jobs for retrofitting jobs. Have you visited Hazard lately?

  123. Uncle Sam
    1:59 pm September 5, 2012 Permalink

    It seems nearly every region of this country has some sort of natural industry that no one can do without. I live in the Pacific Northwest and every one freaks out any time there are anti-logging protests. I feel like this is a selfish attitude. You are choosing your job in an unsustainable industry over the welfare and betterment of your offspring. To me, THAT is anti-American. You are destroying your homeland. Learn new skills, get another job. I know that’s not easy for people who have been in the industry in a long time, but the coal industry just won’t go away. We can have employees phase out as the industry phases out. If we don’t phase out coal, and the population keeps exponentially increasing, we digging our own grave. Do you feel happy with your coal industry job knowing that?