The Issue

Image of wind turbines

Oklahoma’s earthquake crisis isn’t going away anytime soon as long as oil and gas companies continue to extract fossil fuels here using enhanced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling techniques to make their money while everyone else suffers the consequences of their massive environmental damage and destruction to the state and nation.

A spokesperson for the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, the state agency that has completely failed, at this point, to protect the safety of Oklahomans and their property, put this way recently in what almost seems like a sarcastic, overly obvious rub-it-in-your face comment at a Rotary Club meeting in Enid: “"We have had 15 (earthquakes) in Medford since 5 o'clock Saturday morning. We've got an earthquake issue." I say “almost” because the spokesperson, Matt Skinner, quoted in the Enid newspaper, probably takes his agency’s lame apologias seriously and wants us to do so, too. He has to make a living like everyone else.

Let’s be clear: Nothing will be done significantly about the emergency “earthquake issue” here until ALL the Corporation Commission members are replaced with more enlightened people and Gov. Mary Fallin and Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt are no longer in office. Fallin, Pruitt and all the members of the commission are beholden to the oil and gas industry because of large campaign contributions. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say these politicians are actively working in the interests of energy companies.

The larger issue is that we have a broken political system in this country in which corporations direct and influence the entire political agenda. These corporations do so to make as much money as they can, and especially to line the pockets of their wealthy executives. What we’re left with is massive income inequality and, well, here in Oklahoma, a lot of shaking and rattling as the earthquakes continue.

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