Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Easy Being Green

Go to the library or supermarket checkout and read, "The Rise of Big Water," by Charles Mann, found inside of Vanity Fair's 2nd Annual Green Issue for May. It is full-on devastating (and not available online-- that clever, clever Graydon).

Another great article in this issue, detailing Rush Limbaugh's pathetic and persistent contribution to anti-Environmentalism, "Rush to Judgment" by James Wolcott, is available online, found here. A superb teaser paragraph for you from the Limbaugh article:

From Teddy Roosevelt, who made wilderness protection a priority and created national parks, bird sanctuaries, big-game refuges, and national forests, to Richard Nixon, under whose bad-moon presidency the Environmental Protection Agency was formed and the Clean Air Act of 1970 was passed, the Republican Party carried a tradition of conservation that crumbled under Ronald Reagan, for whom nature was mostly a scenic backdrop whose resources could be exploited out of camera frame. Reagan's selections of James Watt for the Department of the Interior and Anne Gorsuch for the E.P.A. put bureaucratic vandals in positions of stewardship, and in 1987 he vetoed re-authorization of the Clean Water Act, a veto that fortunately was overridden. It is a measure of how awful the George W. Bush administration has been on the environment that some activists miss the old, upfront hostility of the Reagan era, when at least the political and corporate machinations took place in open daylight. "Unfortunately, now," lamented Daniel Weiss, an environmental activist (quoted by Amanda Griscom in her article for online's Grist), "our leaders are much more savvy—and far more insidious. They undo laws in the dead of night." Under Bush II, environmentalists no longer need to be engaged, because they've been so stridently marginalized and stigmatized as a pantheistic kook cult practicing socialism under the guise of Gaia worship. This was largely Limbaugh's doing, and now every right-wing pundit from Cal Thomas to Michael Savage croaks the same tune.

Kudos to Vanity Fair for two solid issues in a row--last month's issue featuring an article on The Sopranos creator David Chase was near-perfect and 100% readable, cover-to-cover.

And speaking of Easy Being Green, in case you missed it, here's the permalink to my column on Al Gore and his "An Inconvenient Truth."

No comments: