In papers everywhere we hear arguments such as the one that appeared recently in the Rochester (NY) Business Journal, in an article by economist Raymond J. Keating, under the heading "N.Y. is missing out on economic opportunity."
Keating wrote, "Environmentalists are claiming that hydraulic fracturing threatens groundwater supplies and are using anecdotal evidence to support their claims. Yet years of evidence have demonstrated that the fracking process is safe."
This is not just misleading; it's artful misuse of the language. Or, as my mother would have put it in her habitually blunt way, it's a lie.
And Keating knows it, as do all the other industry-friendly experts perpetrating this carefully constructed framing of the issue and the lazy or stupid journalists who regurgitate it.
It's easy to rebut such patently false claims. They would be laughable if the gas and oil drilling industries hadn't been so successful in lobbying Congress and the Executive Branch and in advertising to an unsuspecting public. The industry is spending tens of millions of dollars annually on these campaigns, and mainstream media for the most part just incuriously publishes or airs what's in industry press releases or what comes from the mouths of industry spokespeople.