Why Robert Murray Fired Workers

 Posted by at 10:51 am  Politics
Nov 102012

When coal executive, Robert Murray, wasn’t insuring some of his workers will be killed by violating regulations for their safety or forcing his employees to attend Republican campaign rallies without compensation, he was threatening his employees with termination if Obama wins to intimidate them into voting against their own interests.  Now he has cut back on his work force because of market conditions that are not related to Obama’s election, but he is lying to his workers and telling them it’s because Obama won.

10coalminersThroughout the presidential campaign, Republicans repeatedly accused the Obama administration of waging a "war on coal." This despite the fact that the number of coal jobs is actually higher now than it was when President Obama took office, and that many of the reasons the industry has lost jobs in the past year have nothing to do with Obama—like the lower demand for coal because of cheap natural gas or declining quality in reserves.

Now that Obama won, at least one mining executive is aiming to make the "war on coal" real by laying off a bunch of workers. In Carbon County, Utah (yes, that’s really its name), UtahAmerican Energy Inc. announced on Thursday that it has laid off 102 employees in response to Obama’s reelection. It is a subsidiary of Murray Energy Corp., which is, as you may recall, the same company that told Ohio miners that they had to attend a Romney rally in August and that reportedly threatened employees’ jobs if they didn’t support the company’s conservative-aligned political action committee

…Murray Energy also laid off 54 miners that worked for its American Coal subsidiary in southern Illinois on Wednesday. A Reddit poster says that he was among the workers laid off at one of those mines (he doesn’t mention which). He posted a link to a press release that he says the company distributed to the laid off workers, as well as this statement:

I worked at a coal mine that decided today to layoff over 40 employees and the only reason that was given was that "America has betrayed coal miners" by re-electing President Obama. Despite the fact that nothing has changed in the two days since the election they decide to lay off employees. I’ve seen how corrupt the company can be over the years and am fairly certain the layoffs are just a way to make the President look bad.

… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <Mother Jones>

Ed Schultz discusses Murray’s antics with Larry Cohen.

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I fully agree here. We need to take the approach that Republican assaults on any of us are assaults on all of us.  Standing together is the only way to project our nation from vulture capitalists.


  20 Responses to “Why Robert Murray Fired Workers”

  1. Thanks Tom,  I agree this is just gives the right another reason to trash Obama.  Right know they just to hear the name President Obama and if they have to make something up to get there fix of hate satisfied.  And it is becoming more clear that standing together is a sure fire way to fight  them

  2. Keep in mind that this is the same Murray whose negligence led to the cave in and death of miners   not long ago– The same  Man whose company has a long history of abusive practices—
    Yes– Until  the original reasons for the bringing about of Unions is rediscovered – this will continue to happen– In Union There is Strength–Standing together is the only way to fight them-=—-The History of the American Union movement is a proud one — Men and women gave their lives bringing about the benefits that have been taken for granted , until now we are in real danger of losing them to the arrogance of owners such as Mr Murray–
    What he is doing here is an old tactic employed to some success in the past- success in keeping workers down and in their place—- Time to fight again ? Or let  'them' continue- ?
    I sincerely hope there will be no lives lost this go-round–

  3. Maybe it's time for another "Battle of Blair Mountain".

  4. He's despicable! His tactics reflect his character!

  5. Robert Murray is just like his good friend the loser named Willard (Mitt) Romney.
    They both like to fire people.

  6. I’ve seen how corrupt the company can be over the years and am fairly certain the layoffs are just a way to make the President look bad.

    Citizens just trying to survive don't matter to these uncaring people, Robert Murray and Willard Romney…

  7. Sadly, this kind of intimidation is prevalent in the coal industry today.  The coal companies have hammered this idea that the President is waging a war on coal for the last four years.  The bottom line is that under Pres. Obama, the EPA has enforced rules to protect the health and safety of miners and people who live in mining country.  This costs the coal companies money.  The unions are practically extinct, so the miners have no protection.  In this area, mining is the main source of decent paying jobs. Of course the miners are fearful of losing their jobs, they have been told repeatedly that they would if Pres. Obama was re elected.  The current popular method of mining  is Mountain Top Removal, which pollutes our waterways, destroys the topography, causes the extinction of various forms of wildlife and contributes to massive flooding.  The main reason for this type of mining is that they only have to employ a third of the number of people to get the same amount of coal that they would have needed to mine underground.  Half the politicians who were elected locally ran on the premise that they would fight "Obama's war on coal."

    • Great post Edie!
      You probably know about this — I read somewhere, but I can't remember where, that at this time of year, layoffs are 'traditional' in coal mining.  Is that correct?

    • Thanks Edie.  Your Kentucky eyes provide an up close perspective.

  8. "…He [Murray] doesn't like Obama. It's hard not to see the layoffs as political—especially since others in the coal industry aren't predicting quite the gloomy outlook that Murray is.
    And in an ironic twist, one of the reasons coal demand is down in the US, according to the CEO of another coal company, is because warmer weather means people don't need to heat their homes as much."
    Seems not everybody is following Murray.  I also read somewhere, but can't remember where of course, that this time of year is also a "traditional" layoff time in the industry.  If that is so, between the discord with other coal companies, this reddit poster, and the "traditional" layoff time, it is very clear to me what is going on — an ongoing battle with Republican/Teabaggers and their henchmen.  It's all about politics, not about business. 

    • The big reason Murray hates Obama is that he got nailed for $1 million in fines the last time he killed employees.  Lord Willared would have taken those pesky safety regulations away.  Obama wants more.

  9. I forgot a point.  I saw a video where Murray almost looked like he was close to tears and had a quiver in his voice as he said "…he knows these people by name…".  In the Mother Jones article it mentions him saying a prayer: "[Murray] read a prayer to staffers on the day after the election that said, "Lord, please forgive me and anyone with me in Murray Energy Corp. for the decisions that we are now forced to make to preserve the very existence of any of the enterprises that you have helped us build."
    I don't believe for one second that this is genuine.  He is just another Republican/Teabagger supply-side pseudo Christian playing the piety and compassion card.  Truly amazing that he might think others see him as being sincere.  Good thing his wolf's snout is showing from under the sheep's clothing!

    • He has street corner religion.

      • That is just plain sickening!
        He actually wants people to think he had no choice in the matter. I doubt if God will forgive him his unfair treatment of workers and the way he uses them for political purposes.

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