29 June 2007

Rachel Carson: Poster child for hysteria

Alas, the poor, deluded misfits over at Salon continue to keep their heads buried in the sand, pretty much on everything. Their tagline should be "We don't have enemies, only friends who we haven't met yet" - or some such drivel.

The current, of their continuous, attack on the Right involves Rachel Carson.

Ms. Carson wrote a book in the early 1960's entitled Silent Spring in which she painted a bleak and foreboding picture of our future if we continued to use chemical pesticides in agriculture. Her contention was that the chemicals were leaching into our ground water and poisoning birds and other wildlife.

I read this book when I was in high school and I bought in to much of what she wrote.


Because I was naive and uninformed.

Carson's book was one of the first tomes that really tapped into the latent vein of hysteria that we now see proudly portrayed in the mainstream media every day. Thanks to Ms. Carson, we now see the 10 second TV spot for that night's 6 O'clock news - "Tonight on TV7: What you didn't know about your water bed could KILL YOU."

She singlehandedly launched the environmental movement in the US and had a profound impact on other issues that shouldn't have ever seen the light of day: the spurious "population explosion" and other "the sky is falling" scenarios.

What was implicit in her writings was that humankind is bad and nature is good. Her contemporaries have echoed and magnified those sentiments - all without the data to back it up.

We now see that a world without DDT has resulted in millions of people every year dying from Malaria poisoning. But hey, if we can save a few dozen common house sparrows then a million people is a good trade-off; in the minds of the Enviro-Nazis.

Carson's book is more romanticism than science but 40 years later we're just starting to "wake up" to what a pack of hokey it was. The reason why it still has traction is because the collective Left is pushing it as a vehicle for hysteria. Remember, the Left loves two things: Emoting and Hysteria.

From the brilliant Mark Steyn:

America is the most benign hegemon in history: it's the world's first non-imperial superpower and, at the dawn of the American moment, it chose to set itself up as a kind of geopolitical sugar daddy.

By picking up the tab for Europe's defense, it hoped to prevent those countries from lapsing into traditional power rivalries. Nice idea. But it also absolved them of the traditional responsibilities of nationhood, turning the alliance into a dysfunctional sitcom family, with one grownup presiding over a brood of whiny teenagers.

America is hated for every reason. The fanatical muslims despise America because it's all lap-dancing and gay porn; the secular Europeans hate America because it's all born-again Christians hung up on abortion; the anti-Semites hate America because it's controlled by Jews. Too Jewish, too Christian, too godless, America is George Orwell's Room 101: whatever your bugbear you will find it therein; whatever you're against, America is the prime example of it.

That's one reason why its disparagers have embraced environmentalism. If Washington were a conventional great power, the intellectual class would be arguing that the US is a threat to France or India or Gabon or some such. But because it's so obviously not that kind of power <u>the world has had to concoct a thesis that the hyperpower is a threat not merely to this or that rinky-dink nation state but to the entire planet, if not the entire galaxy.</u>

"We are," warns Al Gore portentously,"altering the balance of energy between our planet and the rest of the universe."

Think globally, act lunarly. The "balance of energy" between Earth and "the rest of the universe"? You wouldn't happen to have the statistical evidence for that, would you? Univeral "balance of energy" graphs for 1940 and 1873? America is a threat not because of conventional great power designs, but because - even scarier - of its "consumption," its way of life.

The construct of this fantasy is very revealing about how unthreatening America actually is.

America Alone by Mark Steyn - pages xxiii & xxiv

That about sums up precisely where we're at with this global warming issue. It's much easier for us to blame America and her way of life for the world's ills than it is to point them out in the other guy's camp. In our new "non judgmental" society, it is taboo to condemn another culture for its mores. So Yemeni law requires 8 year old girls to get a clitorectomy? Who are we to judge. A man in Iraq wears a soccer t-shirt in public, in violation of shuria (islamic dress code law)? Well then have him drink toilet water and then publicly whipped. Who are we to judge, right?

While our soldiers are getting tortured, decapitated and killed - the Leftists at Salon.com and The Daily Kos feel the need to focus on the constitutional restrictions to Bush's electronic surveillance of terrorists and how they can help get the Gitmo detainees more constitutional rights and procedures.

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