Tag Archives: earth day

Bizarre Predictions from the First “Earth Day”

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The forty-fourth Earth Day was celebrated this week in over 160 nations around the world. The notion that we are stewards of our planet, and must nurture and protect it as we utilize the resources she provides us is both logical and moral, and should be universally embraced. But from its inception, radically political and often disparate causes and sub-movements have tainted the objectives that led to the establishment of the first Earth Day in 1970. This has severely hampered the possibility of greater support for the cause of protecting our planet and the environment.

Peace activist John McConnell in 1969 floated the proposition that peace and the earth be celebrated together, which led to the first Earth Day celebration on the first day of spring, March 21, 1970. Just a month later, Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson founded another Earth Day, which either intentionally or unintentionally coincided with Vladimir Lenin’s 100th birthday, April 22. The movement went international in 1990 largely due to the efforts of Denis Hayes, who was the national coordinator of the first observance.

the-earth-day-showFrom the very incipient stages, the movement was tied more to radical leftist causes than to actual celebration and preservation of the third rock from the sun. What could have led to a very broad, universal movement became instead a fractious and splintered cacophony of extremist propaganda, often bordering on pantheistic adulation of the earth over the needs of the people who inhabit it.

Radicals are too often afforded massive media exposure when gushing their jeremiads and diatribes advocating their specific cause, but all too seldom are held accountable for their apocalyptic projections and forecasts. In an effort to rectify that lack of accountability, let’s go back to the first two iterations of Earth Day, 1970, to review what the “experts” and the media were saying about mother earth.

Here are some of the predictions regarding the earth and our atmosphere itself.

“We are in an environmental crisis which threatens the survival of this nation, and of the world as a suitable place of human habitation,” said Barry Commoner, a Washington University biologist.

“In a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution… by 1985 air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching earth by one half,” according to Lifemagazine.

“At the present rate of nitrogen buildup, it’s only a matter of time before light will be filtered out of the atmosphere and none of our land will be usable,” according to ecologist and UC Davis professor Kenneth Watt.

“Air pollution…is certainly going to take hundreds of thousands of lives in the next few years alone,” lamented Paul Ehrlich, author and Stanford University biology professor.

“By the year 2000, if present trends continue, we will be using up crude oil at such a rate… that there won’t be any more crude oil. You’ll drive up to the pump and say, ‘Fill ‘er up, buddy,’ and he’ll say, ‘I am very sorry, there isn’t any,’” warned Kenneth Watt.

“One theory assumes that the earth’s cloud cover will continue to thicken as more dust, fumes, and water vapor are belched into the atmosphere by industrial smokestacks and jet planes. Screened from the sun’s heat, the planet will cool, the water vapor will fall and freeze, and a new Ice Age will be born,” warnedNewsweekmagazine.

Earth-Day-burn-them-at-the-stakeAnd my favorite, in light of the anthropogenic global warming alarmism of today, “The world has been chilling sharply for about twenty years. If present trends continue, the world will be about four degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990, but eleven degrees colder in the year 2000. This is about twice what it would take to put us into an ice age,” warned professor Kenneth Watt.

Some may argue that such cataclysmic projections would have come to fruition had the EPA not been organized later that year and efforts to clean up the environment taken immediately. But listening to their 21st century equivalents, it’s obvious that we have never done enough.

Then there were the population and human life projections, which included, “Civilization will end within 15 or 30 years unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind,” warned Harvard biologist George Wald.

“Man must stop pollution and conserve his resources, not merely to enhance existence but to save the race from intolerable deterioration and possible extinction,” said aNew York Timeseditorial.

“Population will inevitably and completely outstrip whatever small increases in food supplies we make. The death rate will increase until at least 100-200 million people per year will be starving to death during the next ten years,” according to Stanford University biologist Paul Ehrlich.

Ehrlich continued, “Most of the people who are going to die in the greatest cataclysm in the history of man have already been born… [By 1975] some experts feel that food shortages will have escalated the present level of world hunger and starvation into famines of unbelievable proportions. Other experts, more optimistic, think the ultimate food-population collision will not occur until the decade of the 1980s.”

wells“It is already too late to avoid mass starvation,” proclaimed Denis Hayes, Chief organizer for Earth Day.

And finally, “Demographers agree almost unanimously on the following grim timetable: by 1975 widespread famines will begin in India; these will spread by 1990 to include all of India, Pakistan, China and the Near East, Africa. By the year 2000, or conceivably sooner, South and Central America will exist under famine conditions…. By the year 2000, thirty years from now, the entire world, with the exception of Western Europe, North America, and Australia, will be in famine,” said professor Peter Gunter.

If we could shed the cataclysmic alarmism that often accompanies environmental movements, and wouldn’t subordinate mankind in the global hierarchy of needs, the environmental movement could have even more broad support than currently enjoyed. In the meantime, forgive us deliberative types for not gullibly gulping at today’s servings of alarmist hysteria. After all, the movement has a history, and we’re keeping track.

Associated Press award winning columnist Richard Larsen is President of Larsen Financial, a brokerage and financial planning firm in Pocatello, Idaho and is a graduate of Idaho State University with degrees in Political Science and History and coursework completed toward a Master’s in Public Administration. He can be reached at [email protected].

 

At Our House Every Day is Earth Day

When my son was young he loved to watch superhero cartoons. I remember Captain Planet was a favorite.

At the time, as a busy mom, I only knew my son loved that some kids with special powers could cause Captain Planet to form. He would swoop down saving Earth and getting the bad guys.

Years later I watched some reruns and paid a little closer attention. I was surprised that the bad guys seemed generally connected to big manufacturing companies or involved with deforestation. It definitely was a show with a bias against ‘big business’ and for cleaning the environment with the help of the Pagan god Gaia.

This weekend’s Earth Day special programs reminded me of those younger days. But I have to chuckle when I wonder how many people really believe that by planting one tree or recycling for one day that habits and people will be changed. Will your life be different if you turn your lights off for one hour one day of the year?

At our house every day is Earth Day. My parents grew up children of the Depression. They still hold tight to those values. They do not waste. They turn off lights when out of the room. They keep things because you never know when you might need it. They fix things themselves. Friends come together to help each other. So it’s no surprise that our generation still does the same. Oh sure, we are from the disposable generation… yes, we threw diapers in the trash and use tissue rather than hankies but it’s there. Those three R’s: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle are part of our home. And we do these things daily, so much so that these habits are engrained in our fiber.

As conservatives we enjoy being good stewards of not only our finances but our time. At our house we, years ago, bought a ‘mulching blade’ for the lawn mover. Not only do we not fill up the dump with grass clippings but mowing the grass takes less time. In the summers especially, we hang clothes on the line. I had to buy more clothes pins and people laughed at the  idea of still hanging clothes outside. But when it’s hot in Phoenix by the time I hang up the load of clothes they are dry and ready to come down. Free use of the sun’s energy keeps the house from heating up and the air conditioning running even more. We have long saved our aluminum cans. For years son would count on getting a Happy Meal with the money earned from recycling. Saving the landfill and getting a treat, what could be better? Last year we took down our old swing set and ‘repurposed’ the wood into a small raised bed garden. Now we’re enjoying the fruits of our labor.

None of the things we do require government intervention. We don’t need to have the government use stimulus money so that we can replace light bulbs that are still working. We don’t want to trade in our ‘running well’ car in order to buy a government approved green vehicle. We don’t need the government requiring that we must recycle. If it’s a cost effective program and trees are saved it makes sense and we’ll voluntarily do it. We want the environment to be clean and enjoyable for our grandchildren. Which is why every day is Earth Day at our house.

 

President Obama’s State of the Planet Address

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In honor of Earth Day scheduled for April 22, 2012, President Obama delivered a speech before the 12th meeting of the IPCC, entitled “The World Without a Tomorrow: Why We Need Global Governance Now More Than Ever Before Manmade Climate Change Destroys Us All.” The following is a transcript of the president’s remarks:

Distinguished members of the United Nations Intraglobal Panel on Climate Confidence, members of the Political Bureau of Environmental Affairs, herbivores, omnivores, honorable flora, fauna, microbial life forms, and residents of the United States

We stand here now, on the third anniversary of our sacred refounding, persons of diverse colors and genders – men, women, transsexuals, hermaphrodites all – united in one vision to bring forth from the bowels of history, one utopian dream, one audacious hope for all life on this planet, to usher in the progress of real change.

Together as one, looking forward to a brighter tomorrow, one of darkness, one of… collapsing industrial infrastructure, abandoned oil refineries, and out-of-business coal plants, until one day, one glorious day, America’s Atlantic seaboard will resemble a night satellite picture of the grand experiment once known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. May Supreme Leader Kim rest in peace.

There are some who will doubt us. Heck, some may even mock us a little. But it is the calling of each and every generation to get behind the people and to push forward repeatedly until they are excited enough to get beyond the quaint and antiquated ways of their ancestors, to dismiss the old pieces of paper that enslave us to the past, so that we may accomplish the historic task of fundamentally transforming this world the way that we, as one people, see fit.

To realize our grand vision of a post-industrial society demands the complete replacement of our economy of yesterday with a leaner, greener one. That is why I propose a bold new energy strategy for the United States, one that you think you might have heard before but is actually a little bit different this time – one incorporating windmills, waterwheels, and yes, even steam power. We must get beyond the old way of thinking that says nuclear energy is the way of the future. We must not fall prey to the temptation that argues that drilling offshore and on American soil are solutions to our ongoing addiction to foreign oil. We must forgo even the empty promise of natural gas, which, though our critics claim it is a “clean” source of energy, is yet just another form of the poisonous carbon gas we can ill afford to be monkeying around with.

If I might respond to those who say that they have freezed their keisters off since the onset of the so-called “Little Ice Age,” which I might point out is a direct consequence of the now over-fulfilled consensus of manmade global climate change, no one said it was going to be easy. But if we can get the markets, the banks, and the entrepreneurs to get out of the way, our government can accomplish anything we set your minds to.

Right now the government is dispensing billions and billions of dollars in grants to companies to develop energy technologies that might be called too “inefficient,” “expensive,” or “unreliable” to cut it in what is left of the marketplace. But I’m not going to accept that way of thinking. We might have had a little rocky period, a four year-long recession that is undoubtedly the fault of my predecessor, but the economy is well on the way to recovery. Now there have been some grumblings about a ‘jobless recovery,” which has led to unexpectedly high real unemployment of say, fifteen to (unintelligible) percent – but help is on the way.

Just this year, we hope to create or save tens of millions of jobs by hiring all the young, enthusiastic people of our nationwide mandatory GreenCorpse… ummm, I think there might be a typo there… to promote our green jobs programs, to pick up the litter that plagues our highways and national parks, and simply by not crushing what little industry remains left. Those companies who want to continue to do business are going to have to do it according to our terms, and hell, if they kick a little back to a Democrat in need, they may even be allowed to keep a greenback or two.

Now some have called this fascism. Let me be clear. A meek and conservative form of fascism was tried under FDR and it failed to reach the kind of results we are looking for. No, we are looking to create a new form of superfascism that not only incorporates all aspects of the national economy, but looks to fuse it all together under the umbrella of global governance, while meeting the challenges of addressing the spectre of climate change. Let me now speak to this crucial issue, which is of such vital importance to ourselves, our children, the planet, and of course, polar bears.

To those who think we can continue the status quo of climate change, let me just say that the time for delay is over. If we are going to overcome this perpetual crisis, we are going to have to think big. That is why why we must once again raise the global carbon tax, to regulate excess temperatures out of existence. We might even see a day when the world’s temperature is permanently set on a slightly warm but temperate 72 degrees. Of course, we can argue whether or not it should be 68 degrees. Democracy can be messy.

Our critics will say that we are dreaming impossibly big dreams. They may say they’re humongous or even ginormous. But let there be no doubt. The failure of their imaginations must not lead to the crisis of our consciences. We must move forward, with all the certainty of a moral crusade, to lead the world to complete climatelessness and environmental homeostasis by the end of this decade. The consequences are too grave to neglect. The death of the old order, and the rebirth of a new dawn, with or without man, requires courage and sacrifice. These are extraordinary times.

All species, since the beginning of time, have struggled with the ever-present threat of climate change. We human beings, along with the complete effort of all animals, from the three-toed sloth to the ring-tailed bandicoot, from the humpback whale to the duckbill platypus, must now work together to make worldwide climate equality a reality. And if that makes everything and everyone room temperature, then that is the bold mission that lays ahead. Are you in?

Author’s note: The above is satire. It is a fictionalized account intended to elucidate certain ideas and principles by taking them to absurd lengths. It is not intended to be taken literally.

Kyle Becker blogs at RogueGovernment, and can be followed on Twitter as @RogueOperator1. He writes freelance for several publications, including American Thinker and OwntheNarrative, and is a regular commentator on the late night talk show TB-TV.