The Nature of Things: Fear-mongering

The Nature of Things: There's more than one kind of SPAM

It all started with Rachel Carson's book "Silent Spring." Her book became the inspiration and Bible for what became a rising tide that enveloped much of the world, if not a new religion known as the Environmental Movement. Carson's book was based on the prediction that if modern farming practices of using chemical sprays to kill harmful weeds, insects and plant diseases were to continue, there would be no more song birds left to greet the arrival of springtime. In short, she said man was poisoning the earth.

This emotionally charged book set the tone for a new strategy that is still alive today, and can best be labeled as "fear-mongering." It gave birth to a whole new industry of environmental organizations who discovered that if you scare enough people with predictions of doom and gloom they will send you money. Not only that, but it became a cash cow of government grants and huge dontations from corporate foundations. For the Sierra Club's agenda it was "Let the good times roll."

Now after about 30 years of environmental overkill, Rachel Carson's birds are coming home to roost. What has it bought us? How many of these "Chicken Little" predictions have come true? Let me discount the ways. Their track record is dismal.

One of the most erroneous predictions was made by Paul Erlich, the Stanford professor who sternly announced that there would be massive global famines in the 1970s because the planet was running out of resources to keep up with the rising population. Just the opposite happened. Due to increasing technology in agriculture, there were huge surpluses of food and any starvation in Third World countries is caused by political incompetence or genocide. But did Erlich lose his credibility with his flawed prediction? No, he went right on publishing and distorting the truth to his captive students at Stanford.

A much more harmful hoax that was perpetrated in the name of safety to humans and birds was the banning of the pesticide DDT back in the 1970s. DDT has never been proven by true scientists to be harmful to humans, nor does it harm birds or other wildlife. It is not a carcinogen and doesn't cause falcon eggs to be too thin. What it has done is save millions of human lives, especially in Third World countries, by controlling disease-bearing mosquitos. Since it has been banned, malaria fever is making a serious comeback and is spreading northward in the U.S.

Then there was the asbestos scare which cost the U.S. taxpayers billions of dollars to remove from school buildings all over the nation. Since it was proven that this was not the harmful type of asbestos, this campaign was a total waste of money that could have been used to upgrade our educational shortcomings instead of being wasted on fear-mongering.

The same can be said of the radon gas myth that has since been proven to cause no harm from radiation.

And speaking of radiation, scientists have discovered through numerous studies that low doses of exposure to radiation are not only non-harmful to humans, but have been found to be therapeutic for the prevention of cancer and other life-threatening diseases.

Then there was the acid rain myth. This was blamed on the smokestacks of industry making the lakes in New England sterile from pollution. After a 10-year, multimillion dollar study, scientists in both the U.S. and Europe found that it was not caused by man but was due to natural runoff from rainfall on acid soils.

Next came the panic of mass extinction that led to the tyranny of the Endangered Species Act. This act was based on the flawed "House of Cards" theory whereby any species that disappears from the "Web of Life" will lead to the unravelling of the entire ecosystem. If that were true, why hasn't it already happened given the fact that extinctions have been occurring throughout history?

It seems that the latest thing that is causing some deep misconceptions to be exposed in the environmental agenda is what is happening in America's forests. For the last 25 or 30 years the popular battle cry of the green revolution has been to stop all logging in our forests and return them to a roadless wilderness where Mother Nature can be allowed to function for the benefit of wildlife and the health of the planet.

This flawed reasoning has led to extremely counter-productive results. Every state in the West is now losing their forests to wildfires caused by unmanaged timberlands, overcrowding and excessive fuel loads. When you look at the horrible loss of all the species of wildlife which haven't the ability to flee from the fires, plus the loss of habitat and timber resources, how can these tree-huggers live with themselves? Don't tell me, I already know the answer ... they will blame someone else.

So now we're supposed to buy into their Global Warming theory, which, by the way, came right after their Global Cooling prediction.

The whole strategy behind the environmental movement's tactics has been to keep repeating the same misinformation over and over again, and with the help of the gullible news media and Eastern politicians seeking the green vote, they have been aable to dominate the national agenda.

Maybe, just maybe, those devastating wildfires will cause their agenda to go up in smoke.

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