Environmental OCD   1 comment

I learned a few things in my 15-year stint as an administrator in a mental health center. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is characterized by doing the same patterns of behavior over and over again in the, usually, mistaken belief that you will somehow bring order into the universe.

Rich Trzupek’s insightful piece in the American Spectator (“Obsessive-Compulsive Environmentalism”) outlines how Big Environment is a well-financed industry, just another political player in the Washington establishment — like Big Labor, Big Business, Big Education, et al. — and as manipulative, shrill, and self-interested as anyone in DC.

Environmentalism for many of its members is also a religion, replacing the faith of our founders with concern for the spotted owl and the snail darter. The groups in the green lobby — The Sierra Club, Greenpeace, the Environmental Defense Fund, Friends of the Earth, etc., etc. — amount to upscale Earth worshipping cults, peddling eco-paganism to Lexus luddites. The meaning that traditional religion supplied in the past is pumped into otherwise vacant post-everything lives through competition to see who cares for the planet most. Care for the planet is expressed through support of fantastical policies that would destroy our economy without improving the environment.

Environmentalism is hardly an economic weakling. Ian Murray of the Competitive Enterprise Institute in The Really Inconvenient Truths reported that these eco-groups have hundreds of thousands of members each. The Sierra Club has more than two million members. All told, the eco-groups have annual resources n excess of a half billion dollars. This is not a group of dowdy bird-watchers. These folks have lots of money and enormous economic and political clout.

No one wants to step off this gravy train, even though America is a much cleaner place than it was in 1970, in many cases as a result of sound legislation forced through by environmental groups decades back when their goals and methods were more sensible. If America ever became so clean the entire continent could pass your mother-in-law’s white-glove inspection, no one in the Sierra Club would say, “Mission accomplished. let’s go play some softball.” Pollution and “the sky is falling” are too lucrative to admit success.

Great causes almost invariably evolve from a justified moral crusade, to a business, to a racket. Examples are the civil rights movement and the March of Dimes — both good causes that established a professional bureaucracy to reach their goals more efficiently and then, having reached their goals, had to find a reason for the professional bureaucracy to remain in place. Environmentalism has reached the racket stage, where the folks running the enviro-organizations grossly exaggerate environmental problems and make up new ones in order to keep the members worked up and the money rolling in. They use the most extreme and emotional rhetoric, combined with intense open hostility toward anyone or any group that opposes or even questions their fantastical agendas, which are based at least as much on left-wing ideology as on concern for the environment.

While some of the rank-and-file in the environmental movement are well-intentioned useful idiots, those in charge are far from looking out for Americans in general. Just look at the purple prose produced by some of their press efforts.

In a March 15 release, the Sierra Club urged President Obama not to support vehicles that use natural gas, asLNG is a fossil fuel and therefore evil, contributing to what enviros call “the climate crisis.” Sierra wants no new drilling for oil and gas and no fracking:

The President should instead go all in on electric vehicles and clean energy sources like wind and solar, while boosting common sense climate solutions like energy efficiency.

Yes, let’s ignore the fact that solar only works in places with year-round sun and the panels require a lot of fossil fuel to produce and that wind decimates local bird populations. Those are arguments for other enviro-groups, at future times.

Here are some temperate remarks by Sierra executive director Michael Brune on Congressman Paul Ryan’s proposed budget, which in enviro-think is nothing more than Republican’s perverse desire to pollute the planet:

With this budget, Paul Ryan is trying to revive the dirty fuels agenda that the American people rejected in last November’s election. It’s policy that nobody but the big oil and coal billionaires who bankrolled his campaign could love. Today, Ryan and Congressional Republicans released a budget proposal straight out of the polluters’ playbook — one that doubles down on dirty fuels, throws open the gates of our public lands to destructive drilling, mining, and fracking, and hands billions in tax breaks to the biggest oil companies in the world.

Wow, oil speculators are the boogeyman under your bed now. 
I guess I shouldn’t point out that a 51% majority is not exactly a mandate on green energy. Ouch! Was that a rock?

Catching his breath, Brune goes on:

Polls show the American people want investment in clean energy jobs and climate solutions. But instead, this proposal tries to gut our clean energy economy while decimating programs that keep our air and water clean and subjecting our families to more climate-poisoning tar sands, oil, and coal. Of course, if Paul Ryan listened to the American people, he might be in the White House right now. Instead, he’s doing the bidding of fossil fuel billionaires, forcing their reckless agenda into our national debate and forcing American families out.

I tried to find the polls. If a large number of Americans wish to dismantle the economy in the name of global warming, and wish to see more Solyndras, word has not reached me, but I live in Alaska, so maybe I don’t have access to the whole Internet. If someone has a link. you know how to reach me.

America has sufficient domestic oil and gas to tell the Saudis and the Venezuelans to have a nice day. Energy independence would be a good strong step toward economic growth. Thanks largely to policies pushed by the Sierra Club and like-minded organizations, we’re prevented from recovering and using a large fraction of these resources. A big part of our energy future, if we can sneak it past the granola crowd, is natural gas. The Sierra Club not only doesn’t want America to use natural gas, it doesn’t want us to export it either.

Sierra and other enviro groups worry:

that natural gas exports will raise domestic energy prices, disproportionately harming the middle class and manufacturing, while further exacerbating the climate crisis and leading to more dirty and dangerous fracking and drilling on our nation’s lands. The expansion of drilling and fracking will further pollute our air, water and put the health and safety of our communities at additional risk. Expanded drilling will also substantially increase emissions of methane, which is a powerful climate disrupting pollutant that puts the public at risk of worsening climate change.

Sierra Club fell in with the hysteria over sequestration, managing to fit this hustle into the group’s obsession with oil and gas. Somehow a 2% cut in the growth of government (not actual spending) is going to be the end of the world, so the club is apoplectic over the Keystone Pipeline:

Tonight, Congress failed to act to prevent massive cuts that will take a significant toll on critical programs that protect our air, our water, and American families while maintaining huge tax breaks for the oil and gas companies. This afternoon, the State Department released a cynical report in support of the dirty and dangerous Keystone pipeline, ignoring the stark effects it will have on the security of our nation and our planet. And, tonight, gridlock and obstruction by Congressional Republicans will result in new threats to our air, our water, our food, and our families.

From an earlier release:

This morning, 48 environmental, civil rights, and community leaders from across the country joined together for a historic display of civil disobedience at the White House where they demanded that President Obama deny the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline and address the climate crisis.

Included in the civil disobeyers, in addition to Sierra’s Brune, were such “disinterested climate experts” as Julian Bond, Daryl Hannah, and a couple of the Kennedy clan. Speakers included such scientific clarifiers as the Rev. Lennox Yearwood, president and CEO of the Hip Hop Caucus, and a couple of Indian chiefs. I believe the 1st Amendment protects the right of Indian chiefs and hip hop advocates to speak their opinion, but what does any of this have to do with science or a reasoned argument about climate or tar sands?

Sierra has enlisted Nanny Bloomberg in its campaign against coal:

“If we continue to use coal, we will continue to kill our citizens,” Bloomberg huffed in a Sierra release. “With every 50,000 megawatts of coal taken off line, more than 3,600 deaths are prevented and $1.7 billion in healthcare costs are saved each year. I couldn’t be more proud of our work to ensure that all Americans have clean air to breathe.”

I couldn’t find the method he used to come up with those figures. Here the club high-fives Shell’s decision not to drill in the frozen north:

It is encouraging that America’s pristine Arctic has been given a reprieve and we are happy Shell has now officially recognized they cannot safely drill in the Arctic. Now, it’s time that the Obama Administration recognizes the same thing.

Just so you understand — Shell’s decision cost Alaskans about 1500 downline jobs for this year alone. In a state with only a half-million residents, that’s big. What’s more, Shell isn’t going away permanently. They’re just not drilling this summer. They admitted they couldn’t safely drill in the Arctic with ships that can pass the ridiculous air quality standards but not the more rigorous standards of the Arctic seas. They have ships that can do that, but they will have to retrofit them to pass the air quality standards. By that time, barring citizen action, the Sierra Club and friends will have had the administrative state tighten those standards to where human beings will violate the law by exhaling.

To show just how far Sierra’s concerns can drift from clean air, clean water, and the preservation of natural habitat, in January Sierra applauded John Kerry’s confirmation as Secretary of State because he will be, in Brune’s words, “our nation’s top climate negotiator. We are excited that he will bring his strong credentials on climate to the critical decisions facing our planet, including increasing access to affordable clean energy options and stopping the expansion of dirty tar sands and coal worldwide.”

Did the Obama administration re-write the Secretary of State’s job description when we weren’t looking? The last time I checked, he was supposed to be America’s chief diplomat, not a shill for the enviro movement.

Sierra has bought into and promotes all the unsubstantiated horrors climate change is supposed to bring, as this language from Brune demonstrates:

President Obama’s second term will be a pivotal four years in the fight against climate disruption. In his victory speech, the President invited a national climate conversation, but we also need swift, decisive action to prevent more erratic weather, super-storms, and wildfires.

I think it’s extremely arrogant to think that mere human beings can affect anything as large as the earth’s global environment, but hey, that’s just me. From another release:

2012 was the hottest year on record for our nation. It was a year rife with droughts, wildfires and extreme weather events like super-storm Sandy. In addition, the number of weather catastrophes driven by climate disruption across the world has tripled since 1980, with the greatest increases in North America. The situation is dire and requires nothing short of bold, decisive action by President Obama and our leaders to cut our addiction to fossil fuels and build a clean energy economy.

It snowed here in Fairbanks, Alaska on May 18 of 2013. Sorry if I don’t believe that 2012 was the hottest year on record. Can we place look at the records and maybe include the winter temperatures in that? I think if we do we’ll find there were a couple of years in the 1930s that were hotter.

And here’s how Brune, commenting on Mitt Romney’s nomination as GOP presidential candidate, put Hurricane Isaac at the feet of global warming:

Mitt Romney’s speech Thursday night marked an all-new low for the candidate. His comments added insult to injury for the millions of American families and businesses affected by devastating events like this summer’s drought and Hurricane Isaac. Make no mistake — we are witnessing the effects of the climate crisis today. Americans need bold action and solutions to mitigate the threats of climate disruption – not glib mockery and denial of the problem.

Brune of course was much more keen on Obama’s acceptance speech:

Whether it is reducing our national dependence on oil, putting Americans to work in clean energy jobs, or addressing climate disruption, the goals President Obama laid out tonight are those he has been working toward over the last four years. In the face of relentless attacks from dirty energy billionaires, President Obama has led the way for America to become the global leader in clean energy investment. Wind installations have doubled and solar has grown by a factor of five, putting hundreds of thousands of Americans at work in clean energy jobs. That is progress to be proud of and momentum that can only be seized if President Obama is re-elected.

No surprise then that Sierra and the rest of the enviro-groups endorsed Obama for re-election. Election night Brune had this cheery message: “Tonight’s victory isn’t Barack Obama’s — it’s the planet’s.”

Well-heeled Sierra Clubbers now make themselves feel better about themselves by spending most of their time attacking the very form of energy that has made long life and prosperity possible on the planet, and, ironically, has made the Sierra Club possible. It is the equivalent of the OCD sufferer who, fearing disease, washes his hands so often that he causes the skin to crack and peel, which opens him up to disease. The enviros are as sick and as obsessive as any I saw at the mental health center.

One response to “Environmental OCD

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  1. Reblogged this on Tin Foil Hat Book Club and commented:
    Well said.


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