Cheat-Seeking Missles

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Environmentalism & Collectivism

George Will put into clear, powerful words today something that is core to my philosophy, but I have never been able to articulate.

His Real Clear Politics opinion piece, Environmentalism as a Cover for Collectivism, makes the point in the context of drilling for oil in ANWR:
... one of the collectivists' tactics is to produce scarcities, particularly of what makes modern society modern -- the energy requisite for social dynamism and individual autonomy. Hence collectivists use environmentalism to advance a collectivizing energy policy. Focusing on one energy source at a time, they stress the environmental hazards of finding, developing, transporting, manufacturing or using oil, natural gas, coal or nuclear power.

A quarter of a century of this tactic applied to ANWR is about 24 years too many. If geologists were to decide that there were only three thimbles of oil beneath area 1002 [the 1.5 million of ANWR's 19 million acres slated for oil exploration], there would still be something to be said for going down to get them, just to prove that this nation cannot be forever paralyzed by people wielding environmentalism as a cover for collectivism.
Will notes correctly that for many, environmentalism is collectivism in drag. "Such people use environmental causes and rhetoric not to change the political climate for the purpose of environmental improvement. Rather, for them, changing the society's politics is the end, and environmental policies are mere means to that end."

I've been at a conference for Colorado River water users, and in yesterday's review of environmentalists' challenges to sensible use of the Colorado, it is evident that their motivation is changing society, not protecting rivers. And they want to change society for the worse, turning back time, depopulating the West, un-industrializing America.