The World's Grievance Man Blue Collar Rocker Who Sings With A Cause in His Heart VISIT www.MIKESTOUTMUSIC.com “There are a lot of guys out there who pass themselves off as blue-collar rockers, but Mike Stout is unquestionably the real thing”. -Scott Mervis Pittsburgh Post Gazette "Mike’s lyrics speak for the working class more than any other musician around today" -Jim Jordon Electric Pencil "In the Woody Guthrie tradition, his songs reflect contemporary issues without resorting to journalism. They're more like partisan op-ed columns that grab political opponents by the throat and don't let go." - John Hayes Pittsburgh Post Gazette "It’s high time to make the powers that be dance to a different tune and Mike has supplied the soundtrack for that mission. I believe music can be a driving force for change and I’m glad Mike Stout is behind the wheel." -Paulo Freire of elecpencil.wordpress.com The Grievance ManMike Stout is an internationally known socially conscious singer song-writer and in your face take charge social activist. Taking his music to the picket lines and protest rallies Mike leads crusades against economic and environmental injustice calling people to action. Like his musical heroes Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger his songs urge people to unite in solidarity to fight for a better life and to fight for a world safe from war and environmental degradation. For more than three decades, Mike Stout has been writing, recording and performing songs that tell the stories of the working class heroes of U.S. labor history and their struggles for peace, social justice and a decent standard of living. Working with all-star casts of nationally known Pittsburgh musicians and producers Mike has released 13 independent CDs and recorded over 150 songs. Mike Stout's "Point of Pittsburgh", "Americana Dreams" and "Breaking The Chains" CDs were named notable releases by the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. His "Calling Steeler Nation" video was viewed over 100,000 times and was named "One of the best tributes I've ever seen to the borderless 'nation' of Steelers fans" by Dan Gigler in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette Blog-N-Gold. The song 'People to People" from his "Full Circle" CD brought him to the attention of music fans in Germany. Brandenburg Gate Protest Day 2007Mike Stout has performs at concert halls, outdoor festivals, clubs, union conventions and schools across the United States and Europe. The highlight of his 2007 German tour was a concert at Berlin's Brandenburg Gate playing for thousands at the national protest day. Stout has appeared in Germany on eight concert tours and has performed in Paris, Denmark, Poland, and the Czech Republic with his message of human solidarity and peace. On Sept 7, 2012 Mike was invited to perform in tribute to the 100th Anniversary of the birth of folk-singer Woody Guthrie at the PA Labor History Society concert held at the State Theater in State College, Pa. He performed with Noel Paul Stookey (of Peter, Paul, an Mary), Anne Feeney, and Si Kahn. The event was part of the national Grammy Awards Woody Guthrie celebration. Mike performed his ode to Woody "America's Favorite Son" German Elementary School 2009 -5 Stout performs in schools across Pennsylvania teaching students with his songs about the forgotten unsung heroes of history. They are people who fought for worker safety, the 8 hour work day, free speech, and freedom, but who are not mentioned in our school history books. They are working class organizers such abolitionist and renaissance man Martin Delany, the cotton mill women of the 1840’s, Crystal Eastman, Fannie Sellins, the workers of the Pressed Steel Car Strike in McKees Rocks, the union organizers of the New Deal, Father Charles Owen Rice, Captain Sean (George.) and the resisters of the plant shutdowns in the 1980’s. His message is that we should not take for granted the rights that they won for us. As a union leader and social activist Mike Stout has fought for improved worker safety and came to the aid of the unemployed by founding food banks and economic development councils. As an environmentalist he works to educate the public on the dangers of global warming and fracking. Mike was one of the founding members of Pennsylvanians United For Single-Payer Healthcare (PUSH) that has been in the forefront in the fight for single-payer, universal healthcare. In Pittsburgh Stout fought the closing of the Braddock Hospital and successfully stopped the closing of trolley stops used by the elderly. In 2007 the Pennsylvania Labor and History Society presented Mike Stout with the Mother Jones Award for his efforts as a social leader and as a performer who uses music to bring about change. Mike was a blue collar steel worker and a union leader. Mike tells stories from his heart about people who are affected by unemployment, social injustice, environmental hazards, or war. Mike is not out to be a rich rock star. As he’s stated on numerous occasions,“the kind of ‘change’ I’m interested in ain’t coins or money, but social movements.” VISIT WWW.MIKESTOUTMUSIC.COM
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Those of us living in Washington County, Pa have been getting dumped on for decades since the Arden Landfill accepts garbage from places as far away as New York City. Counties in eastern Ohio share a similar fate with fracking wastewater hauled in from Pennsylvania, West Virginia and other states for injection well disposal. What comes around goes around, eh?
Arden now accepts radioactive drilling & fracking waste too!
The old saying goes “misery loves company.” But the misery we share with our neighbors in Ohio goes much deeper than that. While we Pennsylvanians have drilling and fracking regulated by the DEP (aka “Don’t Expect Protection”), in Ohio they have the ODNR which has earned similar derisive monikers.
Yesterday, Ron rode north with me on a 282-mile roundtrip to Ashtabula County, Ohio for a 2-1/2 hour public forum on injection wells in Ohio. It was hosted by a township manager’s association and included a group of township trustees (called supervisors or councilmen here in Pa.)
OHIO INJECTION WELLS FOR O&G WASTEWATER
The meeting included a very interesting array of speakers who are officials. The county Recorder of Deeds had some very interesting comments about how drillers can ‘flip’ leases to other companies without even notifying the landowner. She said it is also extremely difficult to clear a deed held by a gas lease, especially when you don’t even know which company currently holds it after it has been flipped.
Ohio citizens face similar or worse problems than we have in Pennsylvania when it comes to any real regulation of the oil and gas industry. Back in 2004 and 2010, Ohio had most of their O&G zoning gutted by a Bill passed by their state legislature. It sounds similar to what Texas recently passed to remove local control and what would have been the result here in Pennsylvania if Act 13 hadn’t been challenged and modified.
In the “Believe it or Not” category this is how Act 13 was written
So now you have the entire eastern side of Ohio (along the border with Pa.) covered with over 200 injection wells in 36 Ohio counties. While our open-air waste pits are still an oddity to some of the Ohio residents I spoke with, they are no strangers to the convoys of insufficiently placarded wastewater tankers hauling radioactive Marcellus Shale fluids into their state for disposal. Many of these injection wells are operated by small “Mom & Pop” style operations.
If I weren’t already so familiar with this “stranger than fiction” story I would be even more alarmed by the lack of regulation and oversight of these disposal wells. As their emergency services director said, they have clear and annually reviewed criteria of what emergency responders should do in the event of an escaped lion, but NOTHING on disposal wells!
Poster at last evening’s public forum
It was well worth (no pun intended) the 5 hours of driving and better part of my day to learn more about what our neighbors in Ohio are facing. As one speaker commented last evening, if their local citizens knew how critical this issue was with over 46-million gallons of radioactive waste already injected under Ashtubula County, that 400-seat high school auditorium would have been packed instead of being so sparsely populated.
OHIO CLASS II INJECTION WELL STATUS
Active injection: 202
Drilled or drilling: 17
Wells permitted: 22
Plugged or abandoned: 0
In a similar sense, Pennsylvanians are unaware or don’t care about millions of pounds of radioactive drilling waste now going into over two dozen landfills in our Commonwealth, with nearly a dozen in our part of western Pennsylvania. It is showing up in creeks like Blacklick and Ten Mile. Radium 226 is water soluble and has a half-life of 1,600 years!
This graphic illustrates how much fracking waste went
into the Westmoreland Landfill during 2014
So here is the complete video of last night’s meeting. It is viewable now but the quality will improve once YouTube finishes processing it in another hour or two (click the small gear at the bottom of the screen to change the viewing resolution). If you appreciate seeing this video don’t forget to give it a thumbs-up vote!
SPILLING IS JUST THE BEGINNING
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