Frack Nation Kicks A$$ on Kickstarter

by Little Miss Attila on February 18, 2012

“To some of us, energy policy is about cold beer and dishwashers. To people in Africa, it’s life or death.” Ann McElhinney is speaking from a podium at CPAC, gesturing toward the audience at a discussion panel. “Fracking is a miracle.”

McElhinney is preaching the gospel of putting the needs of the poor ahead of rich environmentalists’ sensibilities.

* * *

In the past, McElhinney and her husband, Phelim McAleer, have produced documentaries on behalf of Eastern European villages, rural Africans, and others who are being run over by enviromental extremism. In their upcoming documentary Frack Nation, the duo is carrying the banner for threatened people here within the U.S.: rural Pennsylvanians, upstate New Yorkers, blue-collar Ohioans, and others whose futures depend on the benefits of fracking, and are under threat from environmentalists. These are, McAleer reminded me today, working-class men and women, mostly without college degrees, who need the good jobs that energy production can supply. “To them,” he told me, “‘big business’ is not the enemy: it’s Big Environment.”

In a podcast interview yesterday with the always-incisive Rob Bluey—and Lachlan Markay (and embedded within a Heritage Foundation article here)—Phelim McAleer talked more about the project, and how Josh Fox, the man behind Gasland, has done a superb job of muddying the waters around energy policy. Fox has been perpetuating myths about hydraulic fracturing, or fracking (centering on the literally inflammatory claim that it leads to toxins in drinking water, including methane gas, shown in the Gasland scene wherein someone lights on fire water that comes from a kitchen faucet, and the viewer is led to conclude that this natural, though disconcerting, phenomenon is the result of fracking).

But how can pro-prosperity, pro-blue-collar forces fight back against well-executed propaganda such as Gasland? McAleer and McElhinney have turned to Kickstart, a grassroots funding mechanism, and put out the call for micro-investers to contribute to Frack Nation, in exchange for Executive Producer credits on the film. Some see a delicious sort of irony in this: after all, Kickstart is usually considered a financing option for leftist projects.

The result has been extraordinary: in less than two weeks, McElhinney and McAleer are nearly halfway to their goal of “at least” $150,000. Clearly, they may exceed that goal—in terms of the timetable, the dollar amount, or both. (And believe me: it’s easy to allocate funds to production, and be left short when it’s time to promote and distribute a film. Those first few weeks of marketing and distribution are very costly.)

McAleer reminded me that beyond finishing the film, one of the purposes of the exercise is to show the coastal and environmental elites just how much support there is all over the country (and the world) for fracking, jobs, and energy production. So hit the Kickstart site, and send them at least a few dollars to show what a grassroots movement looks like.

* * *
Ann McElhinney, the fiery speaker, fixes us with her gaze from the CPAC podium, and reminds us once again—using Old-World grammar—what’s at stake for the less-privileged in society, whether it’s those who struggle here in the States, or those who live in truly grinding poverty elsewhere. “If I’m preaching to the choir,” she reminds us, “it’s because the choir need to be shaken up.”

And sometimes we truly do.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

(Hat tip/inspiration: Bad Blue.)

Katie Pavlich of Townhall interviews Ann McElhinney at CPAC (17 minutes, and worth every second you spend on it)

The Kickstart page, one more time

Mine Your Own Business, Wikipedia article
Mine Your Own Business, Conservatory Amazon link
Not Evil Just Wrong, Wikipedia article
Not Evil Just Wrong, Conservatory Amazon link

“Muzzling Criticism of Gasland”
McAleer and McElhinney Talk to Ed Morrissey About Not Evil Just Wrong
“Educate Yourselves, My Darlings”: Joy Talks About the Personal Impact of the First Two Ann & Phelim Media Films on Her Worldview, and Discloses, Rather Scandalously, That She’s on Friendly Terms with Them

“Filmmakers: Help Us Combat Lies About Fracking”

{ 1 trackback }

AllPatriotsMedia » The TK Quick Six – Thursday, February 23rd 2012
February 23, 2012 at 9:48 am

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: