A Developing Theme on the Environment
I was going to note that Colin Flaherty shows that there’s at least some truth to every paranoia:
I am an ecophobe: I imagine environmentalists creating catastrophes all the time all over the world. I see great floods, famine, disease and death, and behind each is the same thing: a grinning environmentalist reveling in the mayhem as if it were magic. Before you commit me, hear me out. Then I’ll go quietly.
Be the motivation what it will, Flaherty mounts a case that, if not convincing, ought to be cause for some reflection among the greens. Surely there’s a balance to be struck (rearing its head even in book reviews concerning foreign nations’ growth relative to the U.S.A.), but it seems to often to be the case that comeuppance isn’t acknowledged as the foreseeable consequence of prior decisions.
With his inimitable way, Mark Steyn explains a recent example:
“It shall be illegal and a violation of this Act,” declared the House of Representatives, “to limit the production or distribution of oil, natural gas, or any other petroleum product… or to otherwise take any action in restraint of trade for oil, natural gas, or any petroleum product when such action, combination, or collective action has a direct, substantial, and reasonably foreseeable effect on the market, supply, price, or distribution of oil, natural gas, or other petroleum product in the United States.”
Er, okay. But, before we start suing distant sheikhs in exotic lands for violating the NOPEC act, why don’t we start by suing Congress? After all, who “limits the production or distribution of oil” right here in the United States by declaring that there’ll be no drilling in the Gulf of Florida or the Arctic National Mosquito Refuge? As Congresswoman Wasserman Schultz herself told Neil Cavuto on Fox News, “We can’t drill our way out of this problem.”
Well, maybe not. But maybe we could drill our way back to three-and-a-quarter per gallon. More to the point, if the House of Representatives has now declared it “illegal” for the government of Saudi Arabia to restrict oil production, why is it still legal for the Government of the United States to restrict oil production? In fact, the government of the United States restricts pretty much every form of energy production other than the bizarre fetish du jour of federally mandated ethanol production.
Of course, as Flaherty reminds us:
Warning: Misguided faith in the ability of markets to produce food and energy is just one of the early signs of ecophobia. So is using the term “market.”