The water in Charleston, West Virginia has finally been declared safe for drinking after a chemical spill into the Elk River from Freedom Industries on January 9th. This happened when an aging containment tank leaked MCHM, which is an agent used in processing coal, into the Elk River above the water intake for the company which provides water service for the area. It appears that this facility hadn’t been inspected by federal or state officials since 1991. It was also just determined that another chemical called PPH was also leaked into the water. Of course, since the government is controlled by the oil, gas and coal industries, it’s not surprising that Washington is using the “there’s nothing to see here” approach to damage control (remember the BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill a few years back). John Boehner said no new regulations are needed and all the other corporate lackeys in Washington are keeping mum as well. But this shouldn’t be surprising since our elected officials, especially Republicans, have been trying to reduce regulations and oversight since the Reagan administration. Dubya even put industry officials in key positions in the EPA. That’s like putting the mouse in charge of the cheese. Next industry officials will be trying to spin that MCHM and PPH are good for you. It’s smells like licorice, how bad can it be, right?