Several energy companies, including one called Chesapeake, have been drilling holes in north Texas for several years now, tapping into this thing called Barnett Shale and using a controversial water process to fracture the shale and release natural gas.
As the drilling advanced right into the heart of the Dallas/Fort Worth urban zone there began to be an ever louder level of protest, particularly when places like Tandy Hills Park were threatened.
The threat to Tandy Hills led to the forming of a group known as the Eastside Rabblerousers. The group grew ever larger and ever louder. They began to help people all over D/FW fight back against the gas drillers. The main leader of the Eastside Rabblerousers, Don Young, along with others, started a well done website to help them wise people up to the drilling issue.
The Eastside Rabblerouser's success led to what is happening now. It's one of the strangest things I've seen. The energy companies, mostly Chesapeake Energy, for several months now, have been running a massive Orwellian, Sovietesque, Goebbels Worthy Propaganda Campaign.
Many of Fort Worth's public transit buses have been totally covered with signs saying things like "Thanks Barnett Shale for our Strong Economy." This when the city of Fort Worth has had to make massive layoffs of city employees due to a huge budget shortfall.
Dozens upon dozens of Chesapeake billboards litter the landscape almost on the scale of their drilling rigs. At some points on the freeway there are more than one Chesapeake billboard in a row hammering home the propaganda. The billboards repeat the messages on the buses, things like "Friends of Barnett Shale" and "Barnett Shale Helps Our Schools."
The propaganda slogans are repeated in full page ads in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, almost daily.
And then a couple weeks ago, new Chesapeake billboards appeared with actor Tommy Lee Jones being a shill, like you can see above with him saying, "Let's get behind the Barnett."
So, our lead Eastside Rabblerouser decided that maybe Tommy Lee Jones needed to be wised up as to what it is he is shilling for. This led to a letter writing campaign, with the letters sent to Tommy Lees Jones' residence in Texas.
Don Young sent me a copy of his letter to Tommy Lee Jones. It is a very good letter. I'll paste the last 4 paragraphs and you can go here to read the entire enlightening letter.
I’ll end this letter by telling you about the latest news from Chesapeake: I recently learned that they are proposing an 18" gas pipeline that will run through the front yards of four blocks of a residential street near my home. This is a quiet, well-established neighborhood.
Thanks to Chesapeake, nearly every tree on that side of the street will be cut down and new trees can never be planted over the pipeline. Some of those trees are over 100 years old. Most of those homes have kids and old folks living there who will miss those trees. Homeowners will never be able to recoup the value of their homes that sit 4 feet above a disaster waiting to happen.
This unbelievable scenario is no longer an isolated incident in Fort Worth. Why? Because companies like Chesapeake want to make more money and their ad campaign featuring you, Mr. Jones, is helping them do it.
I hope you will accept my offer to give you an unvarnished tour of Fort Worth in the near future. I want you to see with your own eyes how companies like Chesapeake Energy are turning Fort Worth into a Dirty Ol’ Town.
Founder, Friends of Tandy Hills Natural Area