Norfolk Southern

I’ve seen a lot of cartoons by my right-wing colleagues on the train derailment in East Palestine, Ohio. I’ve seen them from Michael Ramirez, Chip Bok, Mike Lester, Mike Beckom, Henry Payne, Dana Summers, Gary Varvel, Branco, Tom Stiglich, Steve Kelley, Al Goodwyn, and Ben Garrison and they all have one thing in common. Not one of those cartoonists has mentioned Norfolk Southern, the corporation responsible for the train derailment and environmental disaster.

All of the right-wing MAGA-loving cartoonists have gone after Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and President Joe Biden for not cleaning up the disaster fast enough that was created by a corporation, a corporation that spends millions each year lobbying. Lobbying who? Lobbying Republicans. They also fail to mention that Donald Trump and Republicans deregulated the rail industry’s handling of toxic chemicals. But most conservative political cartoonists don’t let facts get in their way. Ask Dick Wright. Or ask him again…or again.

The derailment spewed toxic chemicals in East Palestine and forced residents to abandon their homes for several days. Leave it to Republicans to howl at Democrats for not cleaning up their mess fast enough.

Norfolk Southern has created a $1 million fund for victims of their toxic chemical disaster and has pledged about $4 million more on cleanup efforts. Don’t cry too much over Norfolk Southern having to spend a few million on this since the company’s value is over $53 billion. That’s “billion” with a big ass “B.”

Last year, Norfolk Southern spent over $4 billion, with another big ass “B,” on stock buybacks. That’s not all. In 2021, they spent $4.36 million on lobbying nationwide. They spent millions over the past decade lobbying to deregulate how they haul toxic chemicals.

They’ve given over $40,000 to the inauguration party and political PACs of Ohio Governor Mike DeWine. Over the past six years, they’ve given over $98,000 to Ohio Republicans and almost none to Democrats.

Norfolk Southern lobbied to defeat state legislation, in two different sessions, that would have required a minimum of two-person crews on freight trains, pushed by advocates as a safety measure.

Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown and other legislators published a letter stating, “It has been reported that the seven Class I (biggest) railroads in the U.S. spent more than $114 billion on stock buybacks and cash distributions and paid more than $77 billion in dividends between 2010 and 2021, amounts that significantly exceed the $138 billion spent on their infrastructure during that period.”

Washington Senator Maria Cantwell said that large railroads “have cut their workforce by nearly one-third, shuttered railyards where railcars are traditionally inspected and are running longer and heavier trains. Thousands of trains carrying hazardous materials, like the one that derailed in Ohio, travel through communities throughout the nation each day.” The train that derailed in East Palestine had 150 cars.

Last year, Republicans voted against paid time off for railway workers.

A corporation created a toxic chemical disaster and the Republicans who helped them do it, and who ignored railway workers’ warnings that this would happen, are blaming Democrats.

Remember when President Obama cleaned up President George W. Bush’s economic disaster and the best complaint from Republicans was that it was a “weak” recovery? Remember when Bill Clinton cleaned up the first Bush’s economic disaster and left a surplus…which Bush’s son later spent on wars and billionaire tax cuts? Republicans create messes and Democrats clean them up so Republicans can make new messes. Right now, President Biden is cleaning up the mess created by Donald Trump. Don’t let them get away with it this time.

Norfolk Southern and Republicans did this. Unlike my colleagues, I will say their names.

Music note: I listened to Nirvana.

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  1. Norfolk Southern is a prime example of how short term profits in the name of “efficiency” trash resiliency for the rest of us. I live down stream from that spill. The Ohio River is the water source for Louisville Kentucky. Can we sue them too?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Money talks and you will never fix the area unless you break the GOP strangle hold. Today the mayor was on Fox – enough said as he knows who butters his bread. Sad State (Ohio) they are in.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. A billion dollars is 1000 million-dollar-bills. 53 billion dollars is 53,000 million-dollar-bills. That is being a millionaire 53,000 times. 4 million out of 53 billion is chump change.
    Only Republicans should visit East Palestine Ohio. They should stay 7 days next to the derailment and drink the water. Especially Ben Shapiro and Tucker Carlson.


  4. “ I’ve seen a lot of cartoons by my right-wing colleagues”

    Clay, you are being too charitable to refer to these people as “colleagues”.

    Personally, I would refer to them as “scum of the Earth”. 🤬


  5. My cartoon had nothing to do with assigning blame. Just curious, how many liberal cartoonists have drawn cartoons blaming Norfolk Southern for the derailment?

    The NTSB hasn’t completed it’s investigation other than to list possible causes, and that list is extensive with many parties potentially at fault. Maybe some cartoonists are waiting for additional investigation results before assigning blame.

    I will agree though that Norfolk Southern likely has a share of the responsibility. In 2005 as a fireman I responded to the Graniteville, SC, Norfolk Southern derailment and chemical spill call. Nine people died. It was definitely NS’s fault.


    1. Norfolk Southern “likely has a share” of the responsibility? Really? Likely? A share? OK, who would they be sharing that responsibility with? And can you name some of the “many” parties “potentially at fault?”
      And I haven’t seen any conservative cartoons waiting on an investigation before they assign. They’ve all already done it, including you.


      1. I’m not going to do is try to convince you that some people and organizations outside NS might end up sharing the blame. Do your own homework. I’ll give you a hint though that could lead to possibilities. Check out the NTSB preliminary results and think supply chain as just one path their investigation is taking.

        Still waiting on that big list of liberal cartoonists who’s cartoons blame NS for the train wreck.

        Good luck but don’t let it ruin your week.


  6. Liberal cartoonists are NOT blaming Pete Buttigieg and crying for photo-ops while failing to mention the corporation involved. But I mentioned Norfolk Southern. You didn’t. I was specific while you just drew a smoke cloud labeled “Biden Policies.”

    As for the preliminary results of the NTSB investigation, it’s pointing at overheated wheel bearings. I haven’t seen anything about supply chains. Is this some bullshit Tucker is talking about? Maybe the high price of eggs caused the crash.

    Do you know what you’re talking about?
    Have a nice weekend.


    1. I guess I just know more about supply chains.

      Tucker, as in Fox News? I don’t watch TV except for sports.

      Still waiting on that big list of liberal cartoonists blaming NS. 😉


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