Californians Against Fracking Releases New Data Analysis: Oil Industry in California Wastes 2 Million Gallons of Water Each Day | Californians Against Fracking

Each day, the oil and gas industry uses more than 2 million gallons of water on average in California on dangerous extraction techniques such as fracking, acidizing, and cyclic steam injection. At a time when California is facing the worst drought on record, when farmers and cities are both struggling to find ways to conserve water, the oil and gas industry continues to use, contaminate, and dispose of staggering amounts of precious water resources each day.

…According to a recent report from the California Department of Conservation’s Divison of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR), an average of 480,000 barrels of water per day (roughly 20 million gallons/day) is injected for cyclic steam projects in California.  Not all of this water is fresh water because certain operations reuse some amount of water during the process. Because the industry refuses to disclose how much freshwater they use in the process, and they are not required to do so, we looked at the amount of freshwater purchased by the oil industry in Kern County, where over 2/3 of California’s oil reserves are located, to estimate how much freshwater is used in the cyclic steam process.   In 2008 about 15 percent of the total amount of water injected in Kern was fresh water purchased from the State Water Project via local water districts.

We based our estimates on the conservative assumption that only 10 percent of the 20 million gallons of water injected per day is fresh water that could otherwise be conserved or used for municipal and agricultural purposes, which amounts to roughly 2 million gallons each and every day. The true number is likely to be higher because some cyclic steam projects recycle far less water. For example, the Indian Pilot Wells Project in San Benito County estimated that over one million gallons of freshwater would be needed for each of 15 separate wells, and that all of the water would be extracted from the Bitterwater Valley Groundwater Basin.

Acidizing, gravel packing, and fracking in Los Angeles Air Basin. In one year of reporting, the South Coast Air Quality Management District’s data show that oil and gas companies in Orange and Los Angeles counties used over 15 million gallons of water for acidizing, gravel packing, and hydraulic fracturing. That amounts to 41,000 gallons per day just in those two counties. Because DOGGR has not collected data on acidizing and gravel packing on other counties, it is difficult to estimate the amount of water used for these techniques in other parts of the state, particularly in Kern County. If acidizing is performed as routinely on wells in Kern County as it is in Orange and Los Angeles Counties, the total water usage attributable to acidizing and gravel packing could be many times higher.

Fracking throughout CaliforniaReports from FracFocus and DOGGR’s website show fracking has occurred over 200 times in 2014. Reports of water use total 12.8 million gallons so far in 2014 (through May, since it takes two months for water use reports to become available). This is equivalent to roughly 94,000 gallons per day.


Total Water Use. In sum, water use by extreme oil and gas production amounts to approximately 2.14 million gallons every day. These numbers are estimates, and they are likely to be conservative due to the unreported well stimulation events occurring throughout the state and the likelihood that water recycling rates are significantly lower at cyclic steam injection projects. The true figures for water use by these extraction techniques are likely far larger.

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anonymous said:

hey, can you explain the difference between capitalism, socialism & communism as if you breaking it down to a 12 year old?

Well, I’ll try. 

Capitalism is the current way the world is structured. One important aspect of capitalism is private property. This means that things like factories, land, and anything else used in the course of producing goods, are privately owned and operated by wealthy individuals. Another important part of capitalism is that things are done for profit. These wealthy people who own resources for themselves [whom we call the capitalists] are always looking to conduct their business in a way that gets them more money - more profit. As this is the case on a large scale, it means that various capitalists are producing their commodities [t-shirts, televisions, bananas, etc. - those items which people buy and sell] in isolation from one another, and not according to a common plan. There could be many people in need of one item but not enough of them are produced to satisfy everybody’s needs. On the other hand, one item could be overproduced and way more of it than was necessary will be in the marketplace. This is the result of this unplanned way of producing, in which the common good is secondary, and the capitalist’s pursuit of more profit for themselves is primary. 

But while the capitalists own the resources and equipment used in the course of production, it is the workers who do all the physical labor in the production process. The workers are those actually in the mines, in the fields, in the factories, who make the goods for the capitalist. In return, the worker gets a paycheck. But this exchange is not equal - for the capitalist to find this all profitable and worthwhile, they must get more out of the worker’s labor than they give back in the paycheck. This leads us to the notion of surplus labor. Surplus labor is the term for the labor done which the worker is no longer being paid for - work that is only done for the capitalist. And from this extra labor being performed, we get the concept of surplus value. The worker creates value out of their labor, so when they perform additional labor which they don’t see reflected in their paychecks, it means additional value has been created, which the capitalist profits off of. The general phrase for all of this is the ‘exploitation of labor.’ The capitalists live by exploiting workers, and the workers must go through life being exploited.

These workers - the masses of people - are the same people who suffer the consequences of not having a planned economy, as they are the ones who are most effected by the anarchy of production. So in this way, capitalism is built off the hard work of the common people, and yet is operated against them and their interests. 

Communism is the solution to capitalism. Capitalism is a society based on class divisions - the main division is between the capitalist class and the working class. The end-goal of communism is a classless society in which production is socially coordinated and planned for the common good. There would no longer be any class differences. The Karl Marx quote is popular: “From each according to their ability, to each according to their needs.” 

Socialism is the period in between capitalism and communism - it’s the massive transformation of society, in which capitalist features of the economy are replaced: with planned production, with the end of unemployment and homelessness, and so on. Capitalist ideas themselves must also be struggled against at this time, as the capitalist system has been developing for hundreds of years and has left its markings in many common ideas. Of course, it will never be so simple as to ‘march forward’ in a straight line through socialism. Capitalists and those who fight for them will try their best to reverse the tide of socialism, to send us back to capitalism instead of forward to communism. This is why the socialist process is long and complicated. In order to keep it on the right track, it’s necessary to have communist politics in command of society, and to go through with making the labor process democratic and planned. 

I suggest reading Engels’ The Principles of Communism and checking out the Kapitalism 101 Law of Value series if you’re interested in Marxist economics. 

The Queer Detainee Empowerment Project (QDEP) is an amazing alternative to detention organization in Brooklyn that supports immigrant detainees in finding safe housing, legal aid, healthcare, education & a supportive, safer space.

They are currently seeking donations for three detainees who are headed back to school. Please support them in any way you can! QDEP is doing incredibly important work in this community & connecting with other orgs around the country to build a solid support network for immigrant detainees. 





As a huge proponent of serious charitable organizations, it always is disturbing to see trends such as Kony 2012 and various Susan G. Komen for the Cure initiatives take the social media atmosphere by storm. From the ultimate backlash against the celebrity-driven Kony fraud to the embarrassment of the KFC ‘Buckets for the Cure’ campaign backed by Susan G. Komen, I was immediately hoping that the infamous new ‘ice bucket challenge’ would in fact be an exception to the series of misled social media fundraising campaigns.

As soon as the ALS Association published its official numbers and my contacts within the investigative community confirmed the worst, however, it was apparent that once again we have been shoveling (or dumping in this case by the bucket-load) our hard earned funds into an organization that only uses about 27% of its financing to actually fuel research ‘for the cure’ — which just so happens to be based on pumping up the bloated pharmaceutical industry.

But don’t just take my word for it.

$95 Million Later: Only 27% Of Donations Actually Help ‘Research The Cure’ 

Reaching over 94 million in donations at the time of writing this article, thanks primarily due to the viral ice bucket challenge marketing campaign, you may be surprised to see the admitted breakdown of the company’s donated resources. You may be even more surprised to see the income breakdown within this non-profit that prides itself in helping ‘find the cure’ for ALS — now the most common among the five motor neuron diseases. From the company’s own records, we find the following cost breakdown for the year ending in January of 2014 [see above pie chart]. 

Research, as you can clearly see, sits at only 27% of the organization’s overall expenditures. Fundraising (marketing), stands at around half at 14%, and 1.9 million in administration (7%) was spent on their roster of highly paid non-profit executives. In fact, we even have the salary figures for each executive, including the ALS Association CEO’s six figure total:

  • Jane H. Gilbert – President and CEO –$339,475.00
  • Daniel M. Reznikov – Chief Financial Officer – $201,260.00
  • Steve Gibson – Chief Public Policy Officer – $182,862.00
  • Kimberly Maginnis -Chief of Care Services Officer – $160,646.00
  • Lance Slaughter -Chief Chapter Relations and Development Officer – $152,692.00
  • Michelle Keegan – Chief Development Officer – $178,744.00
  • John Applegate – Association Finance Officer – $118.726.00
  • David Moses – Director of Planned Giving – $112,509.00
  • Carrie Munk – Chief Communications and Marketing Officer – $142,875.00
  • Patrick Wildman – Director of Public Policy – $112,358.00
  • Kathi Kromer – Director of State Advocacy – $110,661.00

And let’s be clear: I am a huge proponent of prosperity and business expansion. When it comes to private business and commerce, it benefits us all to see growing numbers among a company and its members. This, however, is not the case for a ‘non-profit’ organization that is based around the concept of ‘searching for the cure’ and ‘funding research’ as its primary goal. Especially when this organization is being funded with close to 100 million dollars through a viral social media campaign in which it appears no one truly took the time to investigate the very company they are shoveling their assets into.

But as our friend Sayer Ji of GreenMedInfo points out in his breakdown of the ice bucket phenomenon, even the smaller portions spent on ‘research’ for ALS are actually going towards pharmaceutical interventions and the pharmaceutical industry at large. There is simply no room to spend even a single percent of the $100 million in an effort to educate you about the reality that numerous studies available through the United States National Library of Medicine have demonstrated the natural preventative effects of key substances like:

Vitamin E: Shown by research to exhibit a whopping 50-60% decreased risk of developing ALS when taken alongside powerful polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Vitamin B12: Demonstrated by scientific study to be highly beneficial in the aid and understanding of ALS. In fact, PubMed research specifically reveals the integral usage of vitamin B12 in ALS research:

“To develop a symptomatic treatment for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, we compared the effects of ultrahigh-dose and low-dose (25 and 0.5 mg/day, intramuscularly, for 14 days) methylcobalamin on averaged compound muscle action potential amplitudes (CMAPs) in a double-blind trial. No significant changes in CMAP amplitude were found in 12 patients who had the low-dose treatment at either 2 or 4 weeks after start of treatment. By contrast, 12 patients assigned to the ultrahigh-dose group demonstrated a significant increase at 4 weeks. This method may provide a clinically useful measure to improve or retard muscle wasting, if a larger extended trial fulfills its promise.”

And the list goes on. But what’s even more important to consider is the lack of information regarding the actual cause of ALS, which may be even more valuable to many sufferers. Looking to the research we find an extensive list of culprits that can be identified and reduced, including:

Pesticides: Not mentioned by the ALS Association, a number of studies have drawn links between ALS and pesticide exposure.

Lead: Often contaminating the food supply and foreign products, 4 studies have demonstrated a relationship between lead and ALS at large.

Statin Drugs: You may already be well aware of the dangers surrounding statin drugs, in which case this may not surprise you. ALS has been identified as a possible side effect of these drugs that aim to reduce cholesterol.

The Bottom Line: Spread Information, Give to Trusted Charities

Amid all of the social media madness when it comes to charitable organizations like Susan G. Komen and now the ALS Association, it remains true that the key element necessary for real change is the spread of information. And when financial abilities allow for it, supporting real charities with a proven track record of directly supporting its stated goals with the bulk of its financial power.

As a major believer in supporting real charities, I always am searching for real organizations that follow these principals. Earlier this year, I found out about a Washington native named Ben Charles whose charity had been shut down by beauracratic government officials — even going as far as to threaten Ben with arrest for feeding the homeless on the streets of Olympia. Concerned about this issue, I further reached out to Ben back in early December of 2013, documenting the government crackdown on his initiatives and others.

Later that month, I gave another church that was targeted by the government for handing out turkeys on Thanksgiving a $1,000 donation in order to purchase additional food items (specifically turkey) and distribute it among those who needed it in the area — a proverbial middle finger to the bureaucratic park rangers and officers who sought to shut them down. This was also done as an initiative to drive others to do the same.

Now, amid yet another social media donation campaign that has led to almost 100 million going ‘towards the cure’, I am inspired (and want to inspire others) to give to a charity that really gives directly to the people it seeks to serve. That’s why I am giving $2,000 to Ben Charles and his grassroots ‘Crazy Faith’ food program in Olympia, Washington in order to help feed hundreds of homeless individuals on the streets with healthful food items.

With this donation, 100% is to be used in order to purchase high quality foods to feed those in need — and educate them on how to better their lifestyle with wholesome foods.

Whether or not you have the funds available to support your local communities, what’s even more important is the spread of information. If everyone donating to the ALS Association actually took the time to share key articles such as those highlighting the dangers of ALS-linked toxic substances, or those discussing the power of natural alternatives to ALS treatment, millions would be helped within hours.

No matter what the next social media fad becomes, always remember that it is your voice that propels change and life-saving differences.

Abd al-Wahhab argued that all Muslims must individually pledge their allegiance to a single Muslim leader (a Caliph, if there were one). Those who would not conform to this view should be killed, their wives and daughters violated, and their possessi…

Must read on IS(IS), the Najdis (LA), Ibn Taymiyya (LA), Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab (LA), etc. by Alastair Crooke, former MI6 agent:

The dramatic arrival of Da’ish (ISIS) on the stage of Iraq has shocked many in the West. Many have been perplexed — and horrified — by its violence & its evident magnetism for Sunni youth. But more than this, they find Saudi Arabia’s ambivalence in the face of this manifestation both troubling & inexplicable, wondering, ‘Don’t the Saudis understand that ISIS threatens them, too?’

It appears — even now — that Saudi Arabia’s ruling elite is divided. Some applaud that ISIS is fighting Iranian Shiite ‘fire’ with Sunni ‘fire’; that a new Sunni state is taking shape at the very heart of what they regard as a historical Sunni patrimony; and they are drawn by Da’ish’s strict Salafist ideology.

Other Saudis are more fearful, and recall the history of the revolt against Abd-al Aziz by the Wahhabist Ikhwan (Disclaimer: this Ikhwan has nothing to do with the Muslim Brotherhood Ikhwan — please note, all further references hereafter are to the Wahhabist Ikhwan, and not to the Muslim Brotherhood Ikhwan), but which nearly imploded Wahhabism & the al-Saud in the late 1920s.

Many Saudis are deeply disturbed by the radical doctrines of Da’ish (ISIS) — and are beginning to question some aspects of Saudi Arabia’s direction & discourse.

There are two poisons at work spreading this disease. One of them is money. Money destroys human roots wherever it is able to penetrate, by turning desire for gain into the sole motive. It easily manages to outweigh all other motives, because the effort it demands is so very much less. Nothing is so clear and so simple as a row of figures.
—  The Need for Roots Simone Weil

"The most dangerous gang in town is the police department, and the real source of organized crime is the government itself. Understand that alone, and you will *overstand that the entire crime fighting campaign of the government is a complete fraud, and a cover for racism and political domination."

— Lorenzo Kom’boa Ervin

“What gets left out is our organizing and our leadership development work–the more direct work we do. Organizing is the thread that connects everything together. Without that we wouldn’t have movement building, strong policy advocacy work, we wouldn’t know what policies we need without the community involvement,” said Lorraine, referring to what parts of their work are not typically covered by grants.

Like a true entrepreneur, Vince McMahon does take risks — usually with other people’s lives, from lowly, forgotten jobbers like Charles Austin and Darren Drozdov, both of whom were paralyzed wrestling in WWF matches, to bona fide stars like Owen Hart, who died after falling seventy-eight feet out of a stunt harness and into one of Vince’s rings. Whether you’re low-status “enhancement talent,” whose only job is to make the babyfaces look good, or wrestling royalty like the Hart family, all of Vince’s wrestlers share one important commonality: they are not employees of World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. Rather, they are independent contractors, freely furnishing their services in an ostensibly voluntary arrangement with a corporation.

The orchestration of pro wrestling heavily depends on such apparently minor distinctions, on degrees, and feints. Take, for instance, the piledriver. Executed correctly by two working wrestlers, it is a safe move, a staple of the mat. Executed slightly incorrectly, it can lead to paralysis, death, or an injury of the sort which possibly shortened “Stone Cold” Steve Austin’s career.

Another delicate maneuver: is a pro wrestling match a competition, or an exhibition? A seemingly minor distinction — but in the eighties, the money men of pro wrestling broke kayfabe, that code of silence safeguarding the industry’s competitive integrity, to all but bellow at state lawmakers that the matches were predetermined, that the whole show was “fake.”

Why? The benefits were compelling. If pro wrestling is just “entertainment,” there is no need for regulatory scrutiny. By pushing through deregulation, with the help of sleazy right-wing lawyers like Rick Santorum, the WWF wriggled out of paying taxes on their TV broadcasts and sloughed off any oversight by state athletic commissions. In New Jersey, for instance, following the state legislature’s 1989 deregulation of the industry, the state “would no longer license wrestlers, promoters, timekeepers and referees,” and wrestlers “would no longer be required to take physical examinations before an exhibition” — a fateful dereliction in a business rife with injury.


Money in the Bank | Jacobin

Sheesh. I knew pro wrestling was bad, but not quite how bad.

anonymous said:

hey dan how are things?? when most communist say there are other countries with better living standards than US which are they referring to? With social democracies other than the racism & classicism that persist in those societies what other downfalls would you point out? also why is there a need for the title MTW vs MLM?

Hi anon!  Things are alright, not too bad I suppose.

Hmmm that is a good question.  Usually communists aren’t the ones to absolutize living standards because we (well, we should) recognize that the luxurious living standards enjoyed by the United States and the social democratic states of Europe are derived from the super exploitation of the Global South.  Certain communists however point to Cuba for example, and insist that in certain regards the quality of life in Cuba is superior to that of the United States.  I would argue that this is true in many ways, for example with regards to healthcare and education.  I’m not a huge fan of Cuba however and I’m not one to glorify Cuban “socialism”.

Other deficiencies of social democratic states are the fact that their status as social democracies is derived from the brutal exploitation of countries in the Global South, the fact that capitalism obviously still exists in these states, the fact that racism is certainly prevalent in said countries, etc. There is nothing redeemable about social democracies and communists should not make it their duty to defend or uphold such states.

There exists a need to differentiate between MTW and MLM because not all who identify as Marxist-Leninist-Maoists are necessarily Maoist Third Worldists.  This brief article explains the position of Maoist Third Worldists and what makes them distinct.

My gender studies teacher told me that we are complicit in our own discrimination because we are greater in numbers, only minorities in respect to power. She says that if we call out and deny discrimination every day in any situation (big or small) we could achieve change. She said that means refusing a job that pays you less than it pays men. And I told her that we’re scared to do that because under capitalism we need ANY job to survive and get ahead and she said that imagine if every woman in The US now just stopped working - so many jobs would lose valuable workers and they’d be forced to increase the wages. Also husbands would probably support it since it means less income in the house. She said that we allow capitalism to rule us by letting it scare us into thinking that we can’t deny a job, that everyone is our competitor and not our friend, by not having any solidarity with each other then we are letting the system do with us what it wants. And that’s the truest thing I’ve ever heard.

9-year-old boy was executed in Chicago: Where is the outrage?
August 25, 2014

Antonio Smith, 9 years old, was assassinated the other day.

He was Chicago’s youngest fatal shooting victim this year. He was shot at least four times and fell in a backyard on the South Side.

And when I went out there on 71st and Woodlawn less than 24 hours after he was murdered, here’s what I didn’t see:

I didn’t see protesters waving their hands in the air for network TV cameras. I didn’t see the Revs. Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson playing their usual roles in the political race card game.

I didn’t see white college anarchists hiding behind their white plastic Guy Fawkes masks talking about being oppressed by the state. I didn’t see politicians equivocating. But the worst thing I didn’t see was this:

I didn’t see the theatrical outrage that you see in Ferguson, Mo. A white cop in Ferguson — a place most people never heard of just two weeks ago — shoots a black teenager and the nation knows what to do. The actors scream out their roles on cue.

But in Chicago, a black child is assassinated, and Attorney General Eric Holder isn’t on his way here. There are no hashtag campaigns saying #saveourboys. And instead of loud anger, there is numb silence.

"It’s only the second day. I don’t know what will happen," said Helen Cross, 82, a neighbor who lives down the street from the shooting. She’s lived in the neighborhood for 49 years.

"Everybody says it’s a shame," she said. "It was terrible. But nobody’s … nobody is …"

Her voice trailed off.


She nodded.

"A lot of people don’t want to be involved until it happens to their family," said her son, Lewis Cross. "And that’s the shame."

The screamers and the race hustlers buzzing in Ferguson like flies have it easy: White cop/black victim is a script that sells, and the TV cameras come running.

But in Chicago, young African-American and Latino men and boys and girls are shot down far too regularly, by neighbors, meaning other black and Latinos.

Venting outrage at police is easier, and it’s politically advantageous. Venting at neighbors is a bit more complicated and dangerous. The neighbors will still be there on the block long after the columnists and the TV cameras leave. People are afraid. They don’t want their children to pay for anything they might say.

"This city is crazy," said neighbor Arnold Caffey, a mechanic from Detroit. "I mean, Detroit is better than this."

We were sitting on his porch out of the rain.

"A baby has been assassinated, and where’s the anger?" he asked. "When that child was shot, some people out there were still drinking, I’m saying a baby has been assassinated, they’re like, well, they don’t care."

What if the shooter had been police officer — a white police officer?

"You know what would happen, the whole Ferguson thing," Caffey said. "But it’s not."

The Rev. Michael Pfleger, pastor at St. Sabina Roman Catholic Church, has consistently condemned the violence in Chicago. He doesn’t flit in or out of town. He’s always here and was scheduled to lead a neighborhood prayer vigil Thursday evening.

"This 9-year-old boy — in my mind — when you get multiple shots for a 9-year-old boy in a back alley, that’s an execution," he said in a telephone interview before the event. "That’s not a drive-by, that’s not an accident. That sounds like an execution."

He’s been outspoken about Ferguson, but he knows that moral outrage is undercut if there’s silence over the assassination of a child.

"We cannot simply be outraged about something that happens someplace else and get immune to what happens at home," he said. "This is pure evil.

"We have to be absolutely outraged. And we have to say, ‘We’re going to find out who you are, and we’re going to turn you in because you’re not going to get by with this. You can’t kill a 9-year-old kid and go home and eat McDonald’s and watch TV.’"

Antonio Smith was shot in a backyard that borders a railroad viaduct on 71st Street. To the east, the gang that runs things is called Sircon City. To the west, a group called Pocket Town runs the show. Police say he was not a gang member.

Cynthia Smith-Thigpen, a retired Chicago Public Schools teacher, talked about the lack of public outrage.

"There’s shamelessness to the silence over this boy’s death," she said. "It’s like, ‘Oh, another child dead in Chicago.’ Perhaps we’re all numb to what goes on in this city."

In the alley, on hot, rainy afternoon, three men sweated through their suits. They weren’t politicians or cable TV screamers. They were detectives working a heater case.

Out there was a concrete pad where a garage once stood, and thick grass in the yard and bushes around the edges. And there was the rain and the silence in Pocket Town.

I stood off to the side and pictured Antonio in my mind. Was he running? Were his hands raised the way activists said Michael Brown’s hands were raised in Ferguson?

Antonio was a baby. He didn’t allegedly steal cigars or threaten a shopkeeper or punch a cop. He was 9 years old. He was targeted. He was murdered.

"People need to be angry, but this isn’t TV, and some people really don’t care," said neighbor Tony Miller, who has a son about Antonio’s age. "And people who don’t live here don’t want to know, but people get killed all the time."


Antonio’s funeral is scheduled for this Saturday morning. If anyone has any information about any rallies, organizing meetings or any support funds for his family, please feel free to message us. 

People who dismiss the unemployed and dependent as ‘parasites’ fail to understand economics and parasitism. A successful parasite is one that is not recognized by its host, one that can make its host work for it without appearing as a burden. Such is the ruling class in a capitalist society.
—  Jason Read

To all of the people who complain about capitalism: Capitalism has many faults, but what is your proposed alternative? Communism?

We all know how well that worked out. You can’t have communism without corruption. At least now you have a chance (however slight) of working your way out of poverty.