Anti-Pipeline Media Mogul Has Surveyors Arrested

… THEN BLURS MORE “JOURNALISTIC” LINES || By FITSNEWS || Three days ago, this website reported on efforts by Georgia media mogul William S. “Billy” Morris III to defeat a proposed 360-mile underground gasoline and diesel fuel pipeline running from Jacksonville, Florida to Belton, S.C. The focus of our piece?  Morris’ shameless use…


|| By FITSNEWS || Three days ago, this website reported on efforts by Georgia media mogul William S. “Billy” Morris III to defeat a proposed 360-mile underground gasoline and diesel fuel pipeline running from Jacksonville, Florida to Belton, S.C.

The focus of our piece?  Morris’ shameless use of his own so-called “impartial” media outlets to oppose the Palmetto Pipeline – which is being pushed by Texas-based energy infrastructure provider Kinder Morgan.

In our story, we noted Morris “recently had local law enforcement issue (trespassing) warrants for the arrest of surveyors who were trying to do preliminary survey work” on the project.

Looks like we were right …

According to The Augusta Chronicle (one of Morris’ papers), “three surveyors working on the Palmetto Pipeline project were booked into the Screven County jail Wednesday on charges of criminal trespass” earlier this week.

And yes, the trespassing arrests occurred on property belonging to the media mogul – who is said to own some 74,000 acres of land in Burke and Screven counties (on the Georgia-South Carolina border).

Not only that … the Chronicle report featured a menacing quote attributed to one of the surveyors by an employee of Morris.

“You can’t stop the pipeline; they have enough money to push the pipeline through the county,” the surveyor is alleged to have said.

Sheesh … that’s pretty ominous stuff coming from a contractor, isn’t it?

Anyway, this so-called  “story” was written by Mary Landers – another Morris employee.

Is it “journalism?”

No … it’s transparent propaganda.  In fact “coverage” like this is especially galling because it is written in such a manner so as to fool readers into accepting it as objective journalism – when in reality it is nothing but manufactured, agenda-driven spin.

Wait … doesn’t this website do that?

Of course we do.  All the damn time.

Unlike Morris’ “news” outlets, though, we don’t hold ourselves out to be impartial journalists – but rather expressed purveyors of political opinion.  Seriously, people … “Unfair, Imbalanced” is our tag line.

Speaking of opinions, we have a simple view on this pipeline – which would run for approximately 100 miles in South Carolina through Aiken, Edgefield, McCormack, Abbeville and Anderson counties.  As long as eminent domain isn’t being abused and taxpayer subsidies aren’t being doled out, we have no problem with it.

What do we have a problem with?  Media outlets pretending to be impartial when they’re really in the pocket of powerful special interests ….


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shifty henry May 8, 2015 at 9:00 am

EXPOSED..!! The Grand Turnip’s lair….

Zed May 8, 2015 at 9:15 am

LOVE old structure like that. “Developers” see them, and hate them as much as they do trees, natural foliage, etc.

That place is too good for the likes of GT, even as is. But lots of snakes and rats to make him feel at home, no doubt.

shifty henry May 8, 2015 at 9:17 am

For me, add to the list sheds and especially barns. Llooking at that abode I can smell the turnips cooking !

shifty henry May 8, 2015 at 9:25 am

— and spiders. The neighborhood kids say that the back of GT’s hands are extremely hairy, and when he moves his fat fingers his hands look like tarantulas creeping and preparing to LEAP at them!

Zed May 8, 2015 at 9:04 am

Media ownership issues aside, it’s his land. He was within his rights not to allow trespassing on it. We are either a nation of laws, or we are not.

The right wing makes Cliven Bundy a hero for insisting on some sort of natural right to grazing land he doesn’t own, asserting that right on the basis of what his ancestors (who stole it from the Indians with the help of government) did. But this guy is suddenly the devil incarnate for using the actual law to protect his property. Hmmmm.

Now for the media issue. The “mainstream” or “legacy” media has not been anywhere near truly impartial for many decades. Some would argue it never was. Look back to the Tammany Hall fights waged, to a great extent, in the press, for confirmation of that. Examples could be found that go back further, to the very founding of our nation. Newspapers take sides. Do we believe that William Randolph Hearst was any more about totally objective journalism than is Rupert Murdoch? No. Not if we’re being honest.

Once again, eminent domain is abused constantly where pipelines are concerned. Will supports having a foreign company, in league with some US legislative and state government interests, and funded by the most extreme crony capitalists imaginable, rape the property rights of countless citizens everywhere Keystone is laying pipe — or trying to.

As for “developers” — if anyone thinks they are not likely to make such ominous statements as the one attributed to that one in this case, they have never met a “developer.”

Will, we know you are “unfair and unbalanced” in your “reporting.” But you keep saying you are consistent about this and that. In regard to pipelines, citizen’s property rights, and what constitutes “abusive” eminent domain implementation, the only thing consistent is your inconsistency.

sparklecity May 8, 2015 at 9:17 am

Well thought out and written!!!!!

Zed May 8, 2015 at 11:24 am

Thank you. I do have my moments.

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RHood2 May 8, 2015 at 12:01 pm

Umm, “objective” journalism was not a thing when William Randolph Hearst was a publisher.

Yellow journalism was the term. From wikipedia — “The term was coined in the mid-1890s to characterize the sensational journalism that used some yellow ink in the circulation war between Joseph Pulitzer’sNew York World and William Randolph Hearst’s New York Journal. The battle peaked from 1895 to about 1898, and historical usage often refers specifically to this period.”

The yellow ink was for a cartoon, the Yellow Kid, that appears in the World and then later the Journal. sensationalism, advocacy. Hyperbole were the trademarks.

Pulitzer ended up so repulsed by how he made his money he created the Pulitzer Prizes to advocate worthy journalism. Objective journalism goes back as a “thing” some papers did to the 1830s, but became a term in the early 20th century.

Zed May 8, 2015 at 12:05 pm

Information I already knew. And splitting hairs. Something being “at thing” in those days was not “a thing” either. So what? The point was that “objective journalism” has not always been the holy grail that it became over the course of the 20th Century.

TSIB May 8, 2015 at 5:34 pm

“Yet in the midst of a series of stories like this, you have changed your position rather markedly in regard to citizens’ property rights and what constitutes ‘abusive’ eminent domain implementation.

The only thing consistent about it is your inconsistency.”

Sic Willie is for private property rights except when he’s against them.

Timmy Tebow May 8, 2015 at 9:12 am

It’s spelled McCormick, not McCormack

CNSYD May 8, 2015 at 10:37 am

You expected Folks to know that?

idcydm May 8, 2015 at 9:23 am

Wonder if there’s a cave on Billy’s 74,000 acres he could move into, wouldn’t he then be leading the way for the rest of us to save the earth?

sparklecity May 8, 2015 at 9:27 am

I’m not against pipelines per se……………
Transportation of liquids & gasses through pipelines is efficient and economical (and as a rule less of a problem to the environment compared to the other methods of transportation of said materials)
Just look at what happens with train wrecks and the damn tankers on the interstates when there is an accident involving said materials
That being said, everything’s hunkey-dorry till there is a pipeline leak/rupture and then all hell breaks loose
Just keep that in mind – plus if emminent domain IS a factor the right wingnuts need to bring that up as well but you know they would not (being the fucking hypocrites they are).

nitrat May 8, 2015 at 9:37 am

I don’t have a particular problem with pipelines either. It just strikes me that since it is a given that they will leak, it’s better to have them above ground so they can be inspected regularly. There have been repeated Exxon leaks in the Yellowstone River in the upper Mid-West and an Exxon leak in Arkansas a couple of years ago that went on who knows how long because the pipe was underground.

idcydm May 8, 2015 at 10:01 am

“above ground”…but that will decimate the karibu by disrupting their migration.

sparklecity May 8, 2015 at 10:43 am

Oh I know and i remember the problem in Arkansas last year
That’s why I’m saying there ain’t no free lunch. There are risks associated with everything and when things go wrong with pipelines it goes to hell in a handbasket REAL quick
Still if there is a problem with leakage as long as the pipeline company gets the shit fined out of it – that’s what needs to happen ASAP.
(yeah right—huh?)

sparklecity May 8, 2015 at 10:50 am

There was a bad one here on the Reedy River near the Greenville/Laurens county line some years back.
It was a fucked up mess and had leaked for some time. if I’m not mistaken, it was the biggest spill of fuel oil in the Great State of South Carolina.
The pipeline company was found guilty of neglegence and fined but not to the extent to be punitive as much as i recall.
just like everything else in the Great State of South Carolina when it comes to business/corporate related fuck-ups to the environment
But you let some titty bar get afoul of the law and the heavy hand of South Carolina justice slams down HARD!!!!

sparklecity May 8, 2015 at 10:52 am

or maybe it was the Enoree River and not the Reedy but it was still a big fucking spill…………..

Zed May 8, 2015 at 11:26 am

They’ve fucked up so many rivers that it’s easy to lose count.

fc May 8, 2015 at 9:56 am

They end up like Moore,SC with fucked up socialists like you spewing your bullshit.Hilarious that you idiots support individual property rights but have never met a tax you didn’t like to steal someones wealth.

If you want to live in a tent,ride a bicycle and light a match to read at the homeless shelter…fine…

Leave the rest of us alone…don’t worry gas will be up about $4 a gallon by the summer…

sparklecity May 8, 2015 at 10:39 am

Looks like you didn’t notice my first couple of sentences………..
Then again, right wingnut dicks like you can’t read and jump off the handle at the first opportunity

Pogo Loves Taxes May 8, 2015 at 11:46 am

” but have never met a tax you didn’t like to steal someones wealth.”

This is the same troll that supports the Republican gas tax hike to rob people blind. What did the pot say to the kettle?

Zed May 8, 2015 at 11:38 am

This is what I’ve been saying all along. If property rights are as sacred as the right — especially the libertarian right — claims they are, then there should be a low threshold for what constitutes “abuse” of eminent domain. Virtually everything connected with Keystone on their latest pipeline is abusive by just about any standard. Hell, it’s abusive to have people trespassing on that man’s land down in GA, too. But is the focus of the article on that? Hell no. It’s on his papers making a stink about what they’re trying to do. As though they are the only papers doing that.

nitrat May 8, 2015 at 9:31 am

What the hell is YOUR dog in this Georgia fight…unless Kinder-Morgan – “the largest energy infrastructure company in North America” per their website – is paying you?
Or, is it just the reflexive Libertarian cock sucking of any gigantic corporation?

Oh, btw, every newspaper I’ve ever seen has an editorial page with editorial opinion pieces.

If you were a journalist instead of a political hack blogger, you might know that.

Goobersmacker May 8, 2015 at 10:53 am

Will Folks = OIL WHORE

Lenny May 8, 2015 at 2:08 pm

Nicely done nitrat.

that guy May 8, 2015 at 10:37 am

The surveyors were on a county road which the land owner (aka pipeline opposer who owns a media company) is wrongly claiming as a private road. The 1.7 miles referred to in the article is from the nearest intersection. These surveyors were within their right to be in the county maintained right-of-way.

RogueElephant May 8, 2015 at 11:37 am

Jerks like this guy are why eminent domain laws had to be written. As un-libertarian as it sounds progress has to occur. While eminent domain is too often abused for tax purposes it still is necessary law.

Its Time May 8, 2015 at 12:40 pm

Please explain and justify your apparent position that private industry should be allowed to utilize eminent domain to confiscate private property for the purpose of making a profit for the private industry.

When government sanctions and forces the citizens to give up their hard earned assets for the sole purpose of providing a profit for industry then we have turned into the type of nation that we rebelled against 200+ years ago.

Amazing that “Republicans” would support such takings.

Zed May 8, 2015 at 12:51 pm

That’s the Koch Legacy at work.

idcydm May 8, 2015 at 6:03 pm

Don’t forget Tom Steyer.

idcydm May 8, 2015 at 5:53 pm

” underground gasoline and diesel fuel pipeline”…be it above or below or not at all the government will make more per gallon than private industry.

FastEddy23 May 9, 2015 at 6:06 pm

… and if private industry build’s it and operates it, government will make even more since g’ment employees costs three times as much, will more likely get it wrong and don’t pay taxes with their own money.

Tom May 9, 2015 at 11:06 pm

Sure you can. Corporations are people and money is speech.

Zed May 8, 2015 at 12:54 pm

“… progress has to occur.”

Spoken like a true progressive.

Why don’t you throw in “for the common good”, and make it complete?

euwe max May 8, 2015 at 11:56 am

a liberal faux news?

RHood2 May 8, 2015 at 12:01 pm

Billy Morris is to the right of Attila the Hun.

Makar Nagelnov May 8, 2015 at 4:28 pm

Stalin’s collectivization of agriculture was really just an extension of eminent domain if you want to argue it that way..

TSIB May 8, 2015 at 5:32 pm

Shorter Fits News: “Waaahhh!”

FastEddy23 May 9, 2015 at 1:03 pm

No mention of other pipes in the ditch?

A wrinkle with the Internet is to use natural gas pipelines as conduits for data-com fiber. (It can also be done with oil/gasoline/diesel pipes too, but it gets a bit messier.

Adding a natural gas pipeline to the ditch would also be a positive forward looking step … There will be a need for more natural gas coming south through South Carolina headed for Florida, Georgia and elsewhere.

erneba May 9, 2015 at 2:25 pm

“Media outlets pretending to be impartial when they’re really in the pocket of powerful special interests ….”
I just wish these smelly little toads would just be honest about what information they disseminate and why try are doing, then I might read their tripe if it was labelled as such.
That’s why I read your tripe, FITS, at you are honest about the crap you put out.


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