During the closing seconds of Friday's program, Rush Limbaugh stated in so many words that environmental wacks are happy the tsunami destroyed civilian property. The level of hate in his voice to this either makes me believe he truly does have such venom for greens, or he is continuing to push an agenda of making out environmentalists to be the cancer to the general public. Maybe both.
The oddness of this is Rush used this during the closing seconds of his program and had followed a completely different topic before the commercial break. From this, I've decided to fight back. I see no alternative since given the frequency of this and what appears to be a fabrication of truth (he did not cite a source). I encourage anyone reading this to pass the last two columns of mine on to people who have a interest in this subject.
One of the areas I've come to realize on why the general public doesn't recognize the importance of the environment is in Dennis Prager's comment on war: "Those who do not acknowledge evil do so because it would mean they would have to do something about it." This is denial. Relating to the environment, those who do not acknowledge the environments attention do so because of urban geograph. The downplaying comes from a resistance to change, and ignoring the problem is easier.
Dennis Prager once stated on air that the environment "isn't all that important to me." I do not want to take this out of context since he was answering a call-in on Bush's logging policies. Like most, Dennis takes issues on terrorism more seriously. I agree. What I disagree with is the right's denial. The right merely need to downplay the environment in order to focus attention away from Bush's undercutting of existing laws with fuzzy math and a general disregard for scientific evidence.
Rush Limbaugh's false accusations follow similar patterns the right is using to attack the greens. Grist Magazine has two columns with examples on what appears to be the right's methodical attempt to snub environmentalists: (1) and (2).
Robert Devine's Bush Versus the Environment has two paragraphs describing the Bush administration. My own personal thoughts are much better represented in his writings:
"To the extent that Administration officials are ignorant rather than uncaring, they can be forgiven for their damaging behavior--and many do seem profoundly ignorant about the environment and the natural world. Most Bush officials have at least one foot in the Wise Use culture, a culture that knows so little of nature that, for example, its adherents mock efforts to save plants and insects and fungi rather than just game animals and maybe some eagles. The Wise Users don't seem to realize that the web of life that supports them and the rest of creation would fall apart with out those "little things that run the world," as E. O. Wilson famously said of ants. Allan Fitzsimmons, shosen to head the Interior Department's wildfire program--a job that requires an appreciation of the complexity of ecosystems--has stated that he doesn't believe there is any such thing as an ecosystem and that "pulic recreational benefit is the principal reason for conserving natural features." The President's budgets have cut funding for all sorts of environmental research, which will only deepen the Administration's ignorance. The Bush Administration, like the Wise Use crowd, seems to take nature for granted. It acts as if it doesn't realize that excessive development is impairing nature's ability to provide flood control, water purification, a decent climate, pest control, new soil, and all those other essential ecosystem services. Not to mention the intangible but nonetheless very real spiritual need we humans have to sometimes get away from malls, television, traffic, computers, machinary, and walls and spend some time in the natural world.
In the end, balance is the key. You may recall from the early part of the chapter that "balance" is one of those feel-good words that the Luntz memo advises the President and others in his party to use to make their efforts seem more environmentally friendly. But don't let the marketing gurus' cynical deployment of the word spoil the idea. Environmental policy really is all about balance. We do need raw materials. We do need industry. We do need places upon which to build homes and human communities. We do need to live with some pollution. And, as noted, we need nature. So the trick is to find ways to meet the needs on both sides of the equation in a manner that can be sustained indefinitely. No one would advocate clear-cutting every forest in America and no one would advocate never cutting another tree in America. Assuming there is no technological answer (such as a cheap and environmentally benign substitute for wood), the debate is about the balance, about how many trees, what age of trees, how often to cut, how to log less destructively, and so on. I contend that President George W. Bush and his Administration are pushing the fulcrum too far to one side so that the interests of industry far outweigh the interests of the environment and, by extension, the public. Once you've read this book you'll be better able to decide if you agree that this President's view is unbalanced."
And from the cover of the book:
"It is unfortunate that a book like this needed to be written, but it truly did; I wish it were not so. I recommend it to all those who believe, as I do, that protecting this beautiful planet we call home should not be a partisan affair."
--Marth Marks, President, REP America (Republicans for Environmental Protection