Friday, November 4, 2011



Tim Nobiling, Town Councilman, Town of Oneonta
His name should be written in at the bottom of column 9a of the ballot.

Dominick Reisen - Town of Middlefield Board
Dominick J. Reisen
Swedish Hill, Goose Watch, and Penguin Bay Wineries

Our newsrooms have been too decimated in the past 30 years to be able to properly cover the assault by the gas industry on our commons.  Those remaining in the newsrooms are also expected to write an increasing amount of ‘puff’ or promotional pieces--instead of doing NEWS!  Too often, even in the face of obvious gas industry fabrications, these fabrications are presented as ‘one side’ which needs to be refuted.  Too often, even when better polls exist, the difference of opinion on fracking is presented as an ‘even’ shares proposition.  But, as the link below to a synopsis of a PULSE poll shows, the overwhelming majority of people in our area of New York oppose gas fracking.
Citizen media must take up the slack if we are to experience democracy.
In the course of the past two years of researching the fracking process, videotaping and interviewing people in Bradford County, PA, and Tioga, Chenango, Delaware and Otsego County, NY, I have become convinced of three things:  
1.) fracking not only harms the surrounding air, water, and land, but it harms or coarsens the SOCIAL FABRIC of communities which are ‘fracked’; 
2.) if this happens, a unique part of the world--an area I have adopted as home (although I appear to have an ancestor buried in Richfield Springs)--will be irreversibly damaged;
3.) the people who have signed fracking contracts are not bad people, but there are some really bad players involved in the whole industry who manipulate and instill a great deal of fear in those who have signed contracts.
              A journalist since 1977, and a media scholar since 1988, I have decided to put together what I and others have seen and documented in the forthcoming documentary, “CLUSTER-FRACKED.”  It does more than ‘take off’ where GASLAND began, but explores the torn threads of society’s fabric where fracking has occurred near my hometown of Oneonta, NY.
It won’t be done until the middle of December, long after this election.  But I realized that I could not look in the mirror if I do not speak out now--when people of conscience could possibly help stop this disaster literally headed down the pipeline.  
          I cannot vote in this election, as I was still busy moving back here when it was time to register.  
         And I feel badly about that.  
Wednesday morning, a friend collared me in Green Earth and asked me “WHO SHOULD I VOTE FOR?  I DON’T WANT FRACKING TO START HERE!”  And I remembered an ad I’d seen in the Pennysaver from Sustainable Otsego.  This is the list I saw there.  It is from Sustainable Otsego.   I believe they have really done the county’s stewards a big service in putting this list together.  I put in a call to Catskill Mountainkeeper, and they referred me to Riverkeeper.  I also looked at various anti-fracking groups and finally found another LIST put out by Marcellus At the Polls (MATP).  They included some footnotes indicating why some candidates made their list.  
         Sustainable Otsego’s (S.O.) website lists ‘anti-fracking’ candidates for the November 8 election, and lists them on their website at
Here is a shortened version of S.O.’s press release.  The first two groups of names are running on the “Sustainable Otsego” party line, for County Board, and Town/City Office:
Richard Murphy, District 4, Town of Oneonta (also MATP)
Barbara Monroe, District 5, Towns of Milford, Hartwick, New Lisbon (also MATP)
Beth Rosenthal, District 7, Towns of Middlefield, Roseboom, Cherry Valley (also MATP)
John Kosmer, District 8, Town of Otsego (also MATP)
TOWN/CITY CANDIDATES (Sustainable Otsego)
Bennett Sandler, Town Board, Town of Otsego (also MATP)
David M. Jones, Town Board, Town of Oneonta (not mentioned by MATP but he came to my house and convinced me)
Chris Harmon, Supervisor, Town of Milford (also MATP)
Barbara Snyder, Town Board, Town of Milford
Bruce Milavec, Town Collector, Town of Milford
Edward E. Gross, Jr., Town Board, Town of Unadilla (MATP)
Lisa J. Moskowitz, Town Board, Town of Unadilla
Again--these are Sustainable Otsego line candidates.  It appears “Marcellus at the Polls” did not look at all town candidates for Otsego County.
I like that Sustainable Otsego mentioned other potential public servants even though they are not running on the Sustainable Otsego line (but I assume they are a mix of D’s and R’s and maybe even a couple of Greens?  Who knows? I don’t.  And I don’t care).  I like that Sustainable Otsego listed them on their website as “Other anti-fracking candidates for Otsego County Board, and for (Various) Town Boards” and their names follow.  I am placing MATP (Marcellus At The Polls beside the names of those candidates (not on the Sustainable Otsego line but listed on their site) who also are endorsed as ‘anti-fracking by MATP, apparently based upon the advocates for morris.blogspot.  
Teresa Winchester, District 2, Butternuts, Morris, Pittsfield (also MATP)
Gary Koutnik, District 11, City of Oneonta
Linda Rowinski, District 13, City of Oneonta
Catherine Rothenberger, District 12, City of Oneonta
Katherine Stuligross, District 14, City of Oneonta 

Charles, Eckelmann, Supervisor, Town of Butternuts (No MATP mention, but a letter to the Star complained he’d sung an anti-fracking song!) 
Michele Farwell, Councilman, Town of Butternuts (also MATP)
Heather Covington, Councilman, Town of Butternuts (also MATP)
Marcia Membrino, Councilman, Town of Milford (also MATP)
Bob Thomas, Councilman, Town of Morris (also MATP)
Marilyn Roveland, Supervisor, Town of Morris (also MATP)
Dawn Sieck, Councilman, Town of Morris (also MATP)
Julie Huntsman, Councilman, Town of Otsego (also MATP)
Alanna Rose, Councilman, Town of Plainfield (also MATP)
Bob Eklund, Councilman, Town of New Lisbon (also MATP)
Steven Zerby, Supervisor, Town of Westford (also MATP)
Steven Hatfield, Councilman, Town of Westford (also MATP)
Karen Wyckoff, Councilman, Town of Westford (also MATP)
Diane Addesso, Councilman, Town of Worcester
Laura Malloy, Councilman, Town of Laurens
Paul A. Stein, Councilman, Town of Pittsfield
William Curto, Councilman, Town of Pittsfield
Jimmy Junior Massey, Councilman, Town of Richfield
Mary Margaret Snyder, Councilman, Town of Richfield
Allison Jones, Councilman, Town of Maryland
NOT ON SUSTAINABLE OTSEGO’S LIST, BUT ON THE MARCELLUS AT THE POLLS LIST (again, per the morris blogspot, apparently):
Mike Harvey of Butternuts
Keith Parr of Hartwick
I do not know the methodology Sustainable Otsego used to determine that the names listed above are all anti-fracking candidates.  But, I know many people associated with that group and respect their judgment.  I am assuming, given the fine materials about fracking available on their website, that there was consideration given to candidates’ positions taken on various issues and possible scenarios.  
On another note, I notice that Bob Woods, who is running for re-election as Oneonta Town Supervisor, is not mentioned on this list.  I am puzzled by that, as his positions on key matters of similar nature seems to put him in the anti-fracking camp, or at least the ‘sane and responsible’ public servant camp, the way I see it. 
I posted an ad in the Daily Star promising a similar list for Delaware County.  But, no one seems to have generated the original research for me to summarize here.   I only have one name.  Why aren’t any of the local news media outlets doing this research?  Maybe it’s not their fault.  Maybe no one is talking much about that.  SUSTAINABLE OTSEGO DID NOT MENTION ANY CANDIDATES, NOR DID MARCELLUS AT THE POLLS.  In fact, representatives from these and two other anti-fracking organizations said there wasn’t much buzz about this in Delaware County.  Speculation is twofold:  
1.) Perhaps there are many secondary residences there and the people are just not around to attend meetings, buttonhole candidates, etc., or 
2.) perhaps there are people who have purchased land in Delaware County for the purpose of fracking it?  
I think both possibilities might account for the relative pre-election silence from Delaware County.  And, certainly it APPEARS that Governor Cuomo’s reputed sparing-of-the-ax for the NY City water supply portion of Delaware County has lulled people into a false sense of complacency?  But, one environmental organization is not waiting to see what happens and why.  More on that in a moment.  
But first! 
Riverkeeper gave me one candidate’s name as an anti-fracker.  
Steve Lundgren (D who opposes fracking versus Ed Sykes (D running as an R FOR Fracking).
You cannot make this up.
While I was given three possible towns with anti-fracking candidates, I was unable to do the research myself on this.  If someone wishes to contact me, I will check my email late Saturday and early Sunday while in D.C. videotaping the Tar Sands action surrounding the White House on Sunday.
Riverkeeper is currently suing Delaware River Basin Commission (a federal commission that has authority over the entire Delaware River region--including portions of Delaware County).
  DRBC has proposed their own regulations (which they say they will finalize them in November)  on fracking--meaning a person COULD frack in Delaware River region, but would also need an additional permit-- NY state permit).  Riverkeeper is challenging the DRBC regulations themselves on the basis that there was no environmental review done, ala New York’s environmental review process, for instance.
  Josh Fox of GASLAND fame has produced a nice short video about the DRBC
Because my documentary concerns events in Chenango and Tioga counties, I am also summarizing Marcellus At the Polls’ list of anti-fracking candidates here, including the footnotes they used.
AFTON Abram Loeb Town Council
April Leggett Afton Supervisor
SMITHVILLE  Carol OMalyev Council Board

Kenneth Whitmore Council Board

PLYMOUTH Peter Hudiburg Town Council

Ann Ellis  County Legislature, District 4
Bridget Kane County Legislature, District 2

  That’s all I was able to find in two days of intermittent research.  If you’d like to learn more about other counties check out the Marcellus At The Polls site on facebook (you would need to be a facebook member or look over a member’s shoulder) at
This battle won’t be won at the polls, in my humble opinion (imho for facebook and Twitter users).  It will be won at meetings and in the streets of the Occupy movement.  Get involved.  Learn about general assemblies.  I have done 2 reports on the Occupy and related movements for Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox Radio show at and 
And you can see two of my video pieces regarding our pro-peace veterans’ resistance activities in the D.C. area in the past year at lisabarr2010 on youtube.  The first concerns last December’s arrest of many veterans, including retired Col. Ann Wright and Daniel Ellsberg, as well as luminaries from Veterans for Peace and Camp Crawford outside the White House fence as Pres. Obama met with titans of industry inside.  It was colder than it looks.
And this piece concerns many of the same people protesting the torture of Bradley Manning while he was imprisoned in Quantico.  Bradley’s treatment is part of the reason behind the Occupy movement. 
If you would like to learn more about how you can help make sure the documentary CLUSTER FRACKED is completed by the end of the year, please contact me at: or

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