The editor’s opinion from Marketplace, Northeast Wisconsin’s business magazine. (Obligatory disclaimer: Most hyperlinks go to outside sites, and we’re not responsible for their content. And like fresh watermelon, peaches, pineapple, grapefruit, tomatoes and sweet corn, hyperlinks can go bad after a while.)

April 22, 2008

An Earth Day reader

Some light reading on Earth Day and the subject of our environment that you are not likely to get in the mainstream media:
  • “Happy Earth Day” from the American Enterprise Institute, a demonstration that the gloommongering of environmentalists makes you miss the actual progress we’ve made in the environment.
  • “Irrational Green Exuberance” by National Review, which suggests that global warming paranoia is following the path of the overpopulation paranoia and the “we’re-running-out-of-everything” paranoia of the 1970s.
  • China Confidential’s take on gas prices.
  • ABC-TV’s John Stossel inconveniently punching holes in Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth (the title of which shows that Gore picked up the most notable quality of Bill and Hillary Clinton — pathological lying.)
  • Columnist Mark Steyn on global warming, of which he says, “alas, with all the ‘climate change,’ we only have a few Earth Days to go before the entire planet goes belly up.”
  • Novelist Michael Crichton about the religion of environmentalism. (And to those who have confused Gaia with God, may I suggest rereading Genesis 1:26–30.)
  • The Economics of Earth Day,” which shows that private enterprise is a better friend of the environment than undeveloped nations or, as P.J. O’Rourke pointed out, the former Eastern Bloc.
  • Similar thoughts from Investor's Business Daily.
  • The Abundant Wildlife Society of North America notes the difference between conservation and environmentalism.
  • In keeping with conservationist Theodore Roosevelt’s quote, Every reform movement has a lunatic fringe,” the Church of Euthanasia, with the prescription, “Save the planet — kill yourself.”
  • An analysis that says that global warming is the opposite of what we should worry about.
  • OK, I was wrong about the mainstream media: A Newsweek interview with a founder of Greenpeace.
  • Newt Gingrich on “smart environmental and biodiversity policies,” or the opposite of what we have now.
  • A reading list on free market environmentalism.
  • And finally, “Earth First! People later,” which asks the following questions about environmental priorities:
    … Visualize the people living on Earth 100 years from now. Let’s imagine that they can reach back in time and speak to us, give us some feedback on the world we’ll be leaving them. What do you think they'd ask us to focus on? Where would they have us concentrate our scarce time and energy?
    A world in which hunger and AIDS have been eradicated or a world where the sea level is 6 inches lower?
    A world free of Jihad where everyone lives under some form of representative democracy, or a world that is 2.1 degrees cooler in the months between October and March?
    A world with 10% more polar bear habitat or a world where even the poorest or the poor have clean water and a sanitary place to go to the bathroom?
    These are our choices. We can’t do everything.
    So next time you fret about whether your car is Gore compliant or if you’re protecting your precious Gaia by buying carbon offsets for your private jet, think for a minute about how it would look to our friends a hundred years hence, or better yet, to a little kid in present-day Africa or Asia who’s starving to death.
    Maybe we ought to return to an elemental truth the folks a hundred years in our past knew clearly and without reservation.
    People come first — the Earth can take care of itself.

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