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Are Pennsylvania’s Form Letter Legislators Fractivist Tools?

shale gas outrages - Tom Shepstone ReportsTom Shepstone
Shepstone Management Company, Inc.



Ten of Pennsylvania’s legislators have gotten so used to fractivist form letters they’ve decided to become form letter fractivist tools themselves it seems.

A little research supplied by one of our readers yielded some interesting insights into what some of Pennsylvania legislators do in Harrisburg. Apparently, these “public servants” view their job as issuing form letters to the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP); serving as fractivist tools for some entity we’ll never know.

fractivist tools

The subject of these 10 form letters is the new DEP methane rules now being proposed by the Wolf administration. Each letter is essentially identical, all starting as follows:

It is critical that as a Commonwealth we continue our efforts to protect our residents and the environment from emissions associated with natural gas drilling.

The letters than continue with virtually indistinguishable drivel about the importance of squeezing Pennsylvania’s most successful economic initiative; the one that kept it floating during the recession and which has so revitalized manufacturing and several rural counties while delivering cheap clean energy for the benefit of the Commonwealth’s businesses and consumers and lowering electric prices.

The message appears to have been drafted by some fractivist group for use by these low-energy legislators who couldn’t even be bothered to rewrite the opening sentence. It’s rather amazing when you think about it. Is this what these folks were elected to do; sign their names to form letters on behalf of special interests? Are they content to be no more than fractivist tools? It appears so.

One would think they could have taken the time to at least individualize the letters to reflect their districts or have coordinated their efforts so as to sign the same joint letter. They did neither. Instead, they unthinkingly simply did what they were asked to do by whatever fractivist wrote the original version; they filled in the blanks with their own names. Such is the nature of “public service” today it seems; signing special interest form letters.

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6 thoughts on “Are Pennsylvania’s Form Letter Legislators Fractivist Tools?

  1. Ah. Form letters. This is a curious thing isn’t it? Basically it’s where you admit in writing that you aren’t even well informed enough on the subject you are writing about to use your own words. Imagine teaching students to do that!

    Reminds me of the time that over 50 NY elected officials, all Democrats so beholden to the antifracking movement signed a letter which basically made no sense and hocked a conspiracy theory.


    • Well, isn’t that nice. Bob Casey siding with the anti-growth, anti-everything Maya over the interests of Pennsylvanians who actually need to make a living.

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