A Journal for Western Man

 

Responsible Mining -- All Over the World

Paul Driessen

Issue CXXVI - November 23, 2007

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Principal Index

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Old Superstructure

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Old Master Index

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Contributors

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The Rational Business Journal

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Forum

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Yahoo! Group

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Gallery of Rational Art

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Online Store

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Henry Ford Award

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Johannes Gutenberg Award

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CMFF: Fight Death

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Eden against the Colossus

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A Rational Cosmology

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Implied Consent

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Links

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Mr. Stolyarov's Articles on Helium.com

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Mr. Stolyarov's Articles on Associated Content

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Mr. Stolyarov's Articles on GrasstopsUSA.com

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Submit/Contact

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Statement of Policy

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If energy is the “master resource,” mining is the activity that makes the master resource possible. For without mining we wouldn’t have drilling rigs, pipelines, refineries, solar panels or wind turbines – or even an axe to chop down a tree, or a shovel to plant a new one.

Indeed, virtually everything we use we owe to mining. From homes, cars and computers to the clothes we wear and food we eat, the goods and amenities that safeguard, improve and enrich our lives are made possible by raw materials that come out of holes in the ground. Mining is a key to sustainable economies and prosperity, especially where agriculture, tourism and other alternative livelihoods cannot support communities. It brings new jobs, new investment in infrastructure, and modern practices that improve health and the environment. New mines often lay the foundation for new communities, like Pittsburgh, Denver, and San Francisco – where today few residents remember the mines and miners that started them.

Yet today, all across the globe, countless proposed mining operations are attacked by well-financed social and environmental activists. They claim to represent ecological values, workers and families in areas that would be affected by the operations – and to oppose only facilities that would harm human health, traditional lifestyles, and pristine natural habitats.

However, as these studies demonstrate, with few exceptions, their assertions are without merit. The activists’ actions actually harm the very people and environmental values they claim to be protecting.

The activists rarely attack state-owned and operated facilities, regardless of how antiquated they are, how much they pollute, how poorly they treat their workers, or how adversely they affect people’s health or environmental quality. The activists primarily seek to raise money … gain prominence, power and control … stifle foreign investment, globalization and development … and keep communities and nations “indigenous” and “traditional.” Foreign companies are perfect targets; state owned companies are not.

Almost never do the activists personally reject the jobs, wealth, technologies, lifestyles and life spans that result from mining – and that their campaigns deny to others, especially in impoverished nations. Rarely do they live in (or even visit) the communities they claim to represent. Never do these unelected outsiders have to live with the consequences of the policies they promote and impose: stunted economic, environmental, and healthcare progress … reduced foreign investment and job opportunities… antiquated facilities that continue to pollute, instead of being replaced by modern systems … and unremitting indigenous poverty, disease, malnutrition and childhood death.

The agitators demand “corporate social responsibility” from the companies they attack. But they refuse to accept even the most minimal standards of ethics, honesty, transparency and accountability for themselves. Even the church groups and wealthy foundations that support, and often help coordinate, the anti-mining campaigns refuse to acknowledge that their dishonest, unethical, shortsighted programs violate the values and precepts they claim to cherish. Some companies are clearly bad actors, and all mines cause environmental impacts, which in most cases can be and are remediated. However, in numerous instances, the most ethical and responsible entities are the companies and corporate executives who are being vilified.

These coordinated, orchestrated campaigns prevent families, communities, and countries from benefiting from the vast wealth that lies beneath them. That potential wealth could bring jobs, improved quality of life, and enhanced environmental quality today – and be invested in education, infrastructures, and new industries for tomorrow. But as these studies confirm – from Chile and Peru , to Romania , Ghana , Madagascar , Indonesia and elsewhere – outside agitators are denying those benefits to the people who live in these poor communities.

We hope you will read the report, pass it on to colleagues, discuss and write about its findings and lessons – and obtain and watch the documentary film: “Mine Your Own Business.”

Paul Driessen, Congress of Racial Equality and Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise, USA

Edwar Escalante, Andes Libres, Peru

Additional authors whose works are included in the report and accompanying materials:

Patrick Moore, Greenspirit Strategies and co-founder of Greenpeace , Canada  

Phelim McAleer, journalist and film maker: www.mineyourownbusiness.org & http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wth_p4p0rfY

Alan Oxley, ITS Global Consultants, Australia

Jonathon Burns, investigative journalist, USA  

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This TRA feature has been edited in accordance with TRA’s Statement of Policy.

Click here to return to TRA's Issue CXXVI Index.

Learn about Mr. Stolyarov's novel, Eden against the Colossus, here..

Read Mr. Stolyarov's new comprehensive treatise, A Rational Cosmology, explicating such terms as the universe, matter, space, time, sound, light, life, consciousness, and volition, here.

Read Mr. Stolyarov's new four-act play, Implied Consent, a futuristic intellectual drama on the sanctity of human life, here.