The Clash of the Cures

Posted: August 21, 2008 in Blitherings

Gulf ‘dead zone’ suffocating fish and livelihoods

Scientists have been studying the Gulf’s dead zone for about 20 years, although its existence has been known for decades. So why is oxygen disappearing from fishing waters in the Gulf of Mexico? The answer, scientists say, is found hundreds of miles to the north, up the Mississippi River in corn country.

Farmers in Iowa and across the Midwest use tons of nitrogen and phosphorous to make their cornfields more productive, which allows the farmers to take advantage of high corn prices resulting from growing demand from ethanol factories and developing countries.

Rain always causes some fertilizer to run off farmland, but this summer’s historic flooding caused even more runoff into rivers that flow into the Mississippi.

So, lemme get this straight.  We can’t drill for the oil in the Gulf of Mexico because of the potential for damage to the ecosystem.  So instead we promote ill-considered alternative fuels which instead have very real and direct consequences on the Gulf ecosystem?

This is one of my classic beefs with the radical enviro-weenies.   It’s all froth and fervor and chest-beating demands that we DO SOMETHING!  And so we push through well-intentioned band-aid solutions, and yet fail to address the long-term consequences.   I consider myself an environmentalist of sorts.  I believe that we should protect and preserve the environment…so that we can enjoy it.  I believe that humans have a unique stewardship of the earth, not that we are the “Enemy” against which mother Gaia needs to be protected.

We can’t drill in the coastal plan of ANWAR, a barren, desolate wasteland, because it “might” hurt some wandering caribou. Uh….yeah.   This is once again where reality runs smack dabs up against the environmental lobby….and loses.  Because the greenies hate oil, any proposed increase in drilling is inherently BAD.  To defeat any such proposal, they trot out the time-tested, consensus-bases, debate-defeating querulousness, that caramel-in-the-craw question which locks jaws shut quicker than a raging case of tetanus, “BUT DON’T YOU CARE ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENT!?? THE ALASKAN TUNDRA IS SENSITIVE AND NEEDS TO BE PRESERVED FROM THE DESPOILING RAVAGES OF OIL DRILLING.!!”  {{insert shocked gasp, horrendous look of dismay, tsking and clucking and head shaking, etc.}}

The simple reality is that our “alternative fuels” simply cannot meet the demand our nation places upon them.  Any energy policy that doesn’t include drilling for all the oil we can on our own sovereign freakin’ territory, is not just short-sighted and stupid, but a clear capitulation to the hard-left greenies who care more about their jingoistic adherence to a wild-eyed environmental utopianism than any sort of rational approach to meeting our country’s future energy needs.

And so far, the cures have turned out to be worse than the disease, and by a good measure.  It brings to mind a statement made along about the Vietnam era, something to the effect of, “We had to destroy the village to save it.”  But this time, it’s not the hated military holding the torches to the thatched huts, but the rabid environmentalists so willfully blind to the consequences of their actions that they will continue to hold desperately to idealogies and methodologies which prove to ultimately be not only counterproductive or ineffectual, but even more damaging to the environment than those which they oppose.


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