Regarding his Aug. 27 column: Selling ever larger and more expensive agricultural machinery, Chuck Pinkey should recognize that the “slow, agonizing death of the dairy farmers in our area” is a result of the industrialization of the food-production system. Farms compete in global markets. Multinational corporations control the bulk feeding of the masses. We should thank and support the brave farmers who have chosen to re-invent local agriculture, and are betting their economic survival on their new endeavors.
Sweeping aside agriculture, post-secondary education, tourism and all our other industries with less than a breath, Mr. Pinkey makes the astounding assertion that “gas exploration … may be the only industry that will bring prosperity to upstate New York …,” a fantasy that he supports with a charming anecdote about one of his multinational agribusiness counterparts in Pennsylvania.
He conveniently overlooks two critical elements: first, royalty checks shrink quickly as the wells play out, and second, according to Bradford County Gas Advisory Board Chairman Mike Lovegreen, “80 percent of the people would tell you they were worse off economically than they were before drilling began, and that those lucky enough to be in that 20 percent were doing great.” A return to feudalism, where a few prosper at the expense of many, is not progress.
Chuck, the coal industry is dying at the hands of your beloved gas industry — don’t try to blame that on environmentalists. Cherry-picking one statistic on Pacific Ocean temperature stratification will not make global warming go away — the UK’s Met Office website clearly confirms climate change.
With Chuck’s one-solution strategy, we’re fracked either way. The “sustainability crowd” of which I am a proud member is making plans for a sustainable future for our county.
Anderson is a candidate for Otsego County District 3 representative.