Mariner East Protest Was A Phony Baloney Stupid Political Trick

Tom Shepstone
Shepstone Management Company, Inc.

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A Mariner East protest held the other day was a phony baloney stupid leftist political trick that only got traction within the fractivist echo chamber.

Pick an issue, take an empty Capitol Building, organize a couple dozen of the usual suspect serial protestors, give them preprinted signs, coordinate with fractivist echo chamber tool StateImpactPA, alert West Chester and Harrisburg media and proclaim a statewide protest. That’s the formula used to generate some fawning media attention for a totally phony event treated as if it was news. It was, theoretically at least, a protest of the Mariner East pipeline project but, don’t be deceived; that was merely an excuse.

Here is some of how StateImpactPA reported (more like promoted) the event such it was (emphasis added):

Democratic Governor Tom Wolf got some unexpected visitors Wednesday—or at least, the hallway outside his office did.

When a crowd of about 60 protesters with the groups Halt Mariner Now and the Mama Bear Brigade gathered outside Wolf’s door to ask him to close down a major, nearly completed pipeline project, Wolf wasn’t there and Capitol police wouldn’t open the door.

They rallied anyway…

Luke Bauerlein, an organizer with the Halt Mariner Now group, said that’s one of his big concerns…

Wolf met with the protesters in Chester County several months ago.

He told them while he shares some of their safety and environmental concerns, the gas liquids need to be moved and the administration is trying to keep the process safe…

Throughout the Mariner project, Sunoco and pro-gas groups have maintained that the pipeline is safe, and that sinkholes and contamination are just a result of construction.

“Oversight of this project is ongoing and strict, as actions by regulators demonstrate,” the pro-pipeline Pennsylvania Energy Infrastructure Alliance said in a statement. “The project is legally permitted and operated, as courts have ruled repeatedly.”

The alliance added, pipeline work has provided a number of temporary union jobs in the commonwealth.

Bauerlein said he and his fellow demonstrators aren’t necessarily discouraged by Wolf’s refusal to stop the Mariner project. He merely sees it as a cue to move their protests out of the Capitol.

“I’m not sure I can speak to that today,” he said. “But stay tuned, there will be more plans to come.”

It was nice to see our guest blogger, Kurt Knaus, from the Pennsylvania Energy Infrastructure Alliance got into the story, but the story itself, of course, was a principally about a protest inside an empty Capitol. Kurt’s observations on the event may be found here. He was also featured in this WGAL clip.

This much is good, but let me point out two things. First, if you can find 60 protesters in any of the photos or the video, I’ll buy you lunch. A West Chester Daily Local News story says there were “about 50 demonstrators” so I’m guessing there were maybe 30. Here’s some more of what they had to offer:

Pipeline demonstrators sang songs and shared personal stories for three hours.

When the building was closed at 6 p.m., police asked the demonstrators to leave the property. Eleven protesters refused to vacate and were arrested by Capitol Police.

These pipeline foes were released after about 45 minutes, were cited and required to pay a $42.50 fine…

Pipeline activist Luke Bauerlein asked demonstrators to “defend what you love.”

“We are not asking, we are demanding,” he said, which was directed at the governor. “Do your duty to stand up for Pennsylvanians…

People who shared their stories included … Huntingdon Counties [sic] Ellen Gerhart [who] spen[t] two months in jail for ”trespassing” on her own property.

Ellen Gerhart, of course, speaks to the unserious nature of this phony baloney protest. The singing of a civil rights sounding song recommended by the Extinction Rebellion adds a note of absurdity and reminds us these folks, like the ER clowns, are simply engaging in what Glenn Reynolds describes as the “self-indulgent antics of hysterical overprivileged white people.”

But that isn’t all. Luke Bauerlein, the “organizer,” has a Facebook page that shows he’s a Bernie Bro and organizer for a whole host of radical causes. It also show he “manages” a group called PA Statewide Indivisible as well as the West Chester University Poetry Center, Indivisible Chester County, the Mama Bear Brigade and The Late Greats, whatever that is. It appears his job, such as it is, has something to do with an “Indivisible” organization.

A little more research indicates it is this group, which is focused right now on Impeaching President Trump. It is funded through ActBlue Civics, founded by Jonathan Zucker the top donors to whom include Google’s Eric Schmidt (also of NRDC gang and Ivanpah infamy), Adelaide Park Gomer and James Simon — all big-time fractivists. Tom Steyer, too, has given them money and the Soros family has as well. It is really two organizations; the Indivisible Project, which is a 501(c)4 political tax-exempt, and Indivisible Civics, which is a501(c)3 tax-exempt charity, potentially allowing the organizations to swap resources and work around charitable tax-exempt restrictions on political activity.

The protest to no one who was there in the Capitol, in other words, was just another stupid political trick, by the usual gang of elites who really don’t like oil and gas, or this country for that matter, unless it bends to their wills and special interests.

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