12 thoughts on “Save the Artic Wilderness”

  1. There’s too many reasons to state here in the comment section, but a major reason is that it would set a dangerous precedent.

    If we allow drilling in one wildlife refuge, why shouldn’t we allow it all wildlife refuges? Why not allow it in national parks. And if we are worried about energy, why don’t we allow geothermal development in Yellowstone? After all, it’s the perfect place to find free steam for energy development.

    Is there any place that’s important enough to restrict development? If the people have made that decision, and re-affirmed it again and again, will we have to defend the decision again and again until finally the people are taken unaware and their opinion is overridden?

  2. Well, the slippery-slope argument worked in opposing gay marriage; why not here. I don’t know. There was a time when I’d support any liberal position just on principle. I don’t see things as so black and white anymore. The last couple elections left a bad taste in my mouth. So much anger, mistrust. I note a certain sharpness or mockery even in your comment. The national character has changed and not for the better.

  3. I mainly opposed the Bush administration in the last election because of their careless disregard of the environment.

    I wrote a lot of environmental articles for Open Source Politics, so I really don’t have too much more to say about it. Instead of continuiing to talk about it here I contribute as much as I can to environmental groups and lobby the politicians I give money to.

    The conservatives accuse environmentalists of being unable to “compromise” but once there has been a compromise and industry has used up their share of the agreement, they push for another compromise until in the end there’s nothing left to argue over.

    It seems to me that politicians and business show a callous disregard for the environment that threatens all of our well-being.

    As a likely victim of improper Hanford nuclear waste handling (thyroid cancer) and the use of Agent Orange in Vietnam (throat cancer), I have little faith that we can blindly trust the government and industry to make the best long-term decisions about the environment and our health.

  4. One also has to look at George Bush’s environmental record in Texas, which was abysmal. Texas now has the worst air quality of all the states in the union, and it’s only been through massive environmental lobbying that any of the clean up started.

    In my own state of Missouri, the first action the new Republican governor did, on his first day in office, was fire all of the management of our state’s DNR. All of them, with no replacements. Many of these people were respected by both environmentals AND corporations doing business here — it left everyone totally confused. But it signals a real pushback against the environment.

    I was raised in the fallout zone of Hanford, too, and had grown up drinking the milk impacted by this. My Dad had cancers, most based, the doctors estimate, on his exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam. I agree with what you’re saying, Loren: we the people must protect this land against those who can’t see farther than the next election, or the next stock meeting report.

  5. I absolutely agree with the viewpoint ‘If we allow drilling in one wildlife refuge, why shouldn’t we allow it all wildlife refuges?’. There are similar ‘environmental versus commercial’ issues in Scotland at present, and the thin end of the wedge is pretty obvious to everyone but the politicians and the businessmen intent on pushing their money-making schemes through parliament.

    What I wonder, though, is whether your average American understands just how unpopular America’s refusal to sign the Kyoto Agreement has made it in many parts of the world? Some other countries haven’t signed either, but America is the world’s single greatest polluter of the environment. To hear Bush dismiss entreaties to help counter global warming with a smug ‘sorry pal, it’s bad for business’ is worse than infuriating, it’s downright insulting.

  6. I don’t agree that businesses and politicians have a callous disregard for the environment. Any businesses I’ve been associated with have been responsible citizens. The politicians I’ve known – Ds and Rs – are ethical people who work hard for their constitutents and don’t deserve such free and easy scorn. Nor should people who work for enviornmental causes be ridiculed and portrayed as uncaring about jobs or the economy. That’s nonsense that gets in the way of any chance to communicate. It just feeds mistrust and assures that any forward progress for the greater goals of our society happens through lurching jolts to the left and right.

  7. I’m glad that you worked for businesses that showed concern for the environment, but I think if you checked the number of superfund sites in America you’d have a hard to proving that most companies are concerned about the environment.

    Read this article:
    and then tell me that most businesses are concerned about the environment.

    I’m presently living in Tacoma on the top of the Arseco Superfund Site, a copper smelter that polluted the whole South Sound area with arsenic that still endangers schoolchildren’s health 20 years later. Without federal lawsuits they would never have cleaned it up.

  8. We all view the world in our own way. It seems to me there are really two ways to go through life: happy or mad. I won’t adopt a siege mentality. I’m reminded of lines by Takahashi in his poem, Moving:

    My thought moves the world
    I move, it moves
    I crook my arm
    The world’s crooked

    Happy St. Patrick’s Day.

  9. Tim, I admire your willingness to maintain an open viewpoint. I think you do so by ignoring much of the evidence that surrounds you — the air alerts in most cities, the fact that we reneged on Kyoto, how we’re allowing coal plants to ‘buy’ exemptions from mercury pollution; how lumber companies leave a thin line of trees so that people can’t see the clear cutting that’s going on; that states where oil drilling and processing are allowed are the most polluted in the country; companies have dumped waste water and destroyed entire species doing so; politicians have accepted payments to look the other way — or endorse a bill.

    I don’t look at this as a siege — I look at this as a war. I’m fighting for Loren’s grandkids.

  10. No shortage of things to fuel your “war,” Shelley.

    The discarding of the disabled.
    The proliferation of handguns and assault rifles.
    The stench, terror, and blood at chicken and hog rendering plants.
    The shameful and stubborn spread of adult illiteracy.
    The abuse of the elderly.
    The shortfall of the minimum wage to sustain existence.
    The poisoning of our food supply with chemicals.
    The mentally ill cast out on the streets.
    The explosion in our prison population.
    The outcasting of unwed teenage mothers.
    The anal electrocution of farm-raised minks.
    The staggering unemployment among minorities.
    The slashing of education funding for special needs children.
    The $300 billion to fund wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
    The 1500+ American dead in Iraq.
    The emergence of “cranial implants” for our brain damaged soldiers.
    The intimidation of minority voters.
    The misery of the bereaved families of 9/11.
    The stink of hate crimes.
    The haughty refusal of civil rights to gay couples.
    The hopelessness of domestic abuse.
    The collapsing institution of marriage.
    The suppression of opportunity for racial minorities.
    The denial of legal assistance for the poor.
    The assured advantages for white males.
    The violence at abortion clinics.
    The repression of indigenous people.
    The mockery and venom of right wing talk radio programs.
    The surrender of liberties to the Patriot Act.
    The pus of child pornography.
    The endless executing of prisoners.
    The overpopulating of public lands with game animals.
    The starving of Amtrak for the automotive industry.
    The celebrating of the vulgar in mass entertainment.
    The manipulation of news programs for propaganda.
    The will to dismantle social security.
    The jeering of liberal talk radio programs.
    The crisis in arts funding.
    The crises at public radio.
    The outrage of corporate corruption.
    The rendering of prisoners to other countries for torture.
    The armed militias swarming across the Midwest.

    You can drive yourself mad. It’s your life and your choice. I think the most toxic thing in this country isn’t in the ground, the water, or the air, but in the mind. We say yes and no, we support and oppose, and that’s important. I write letters. I make donations. I volunteer my time. I vote. I’m just through with hating.
    As Bill O’Reilly says (or said, I don’t know anymore), you (or anybody else) can have the last word. I didn’t mean to take over this site.

  11. I don’t think you do things out of fear or hatred, but, rather, out of love.

    But when you love something, you do your best to protect it.

    I think you’ll find a lot more celebration of what is beautiful in life in these pages than you will hatred of anything, Tom.

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