Friday, February 18, 2011

Propagandist and Proud

Tom Horton, author and environmentalist published a piece yesterday that admitted his agenda:
Recently, I was set straight by a well-stated letter to the editor from a reader (let’s call him Gentle Reader).

My first reaction was to dismiss it as a rant. The headline said: “Environmental education will radicalize our youth.”

Gentle Reader was concerned about the Maryland Board of Education's approval of adding environmental literacy to the curriculum for all students.

The aim of this, he argued, is nothing less than "radicalization of our young."

He explained that environmentalists like the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and the Sierra Club — and me and many other Marylanders who backed this greening of the public schools — want to stop human growth on the planet.

We want to raise the cost of energy.

We want to take productive farmland out of cultivation.

We are Chicken Littles sounding alarms about the ozone hole, global warming and endangered species.

Well I think Gentle Reader is on to something. I want to plead guilty on all counts. It's something environmentalists ought to do more.
He then goes on to rationalize all these positions.  Some of the positions seem reasonable, but most are expressed in the usual overwrought tones.  You know, if he really thinks there are too many people, he could volunteer to be the next one out.  But as usual, radical environmentalists think that it's always the other people who need to satisfy their desires.  They get to live the high life because of the virtuousness of their beliefs.

So he demands the right to control the education of the next generation, so they will grow up in his image.  Such grand paternalism.  Never mind real facts. Let me imagine the "environmental literacy" that will be taught. You must believe in the recycling of everything because it's "virtuous".  Never mind that most of it ends up in a dumpster anyway.  If they're not paying you to take it, it's just trash collection with a deceptive moniker.  All ecosystems are "delicate", and you should never consider the real costs to real people of your environmental fantasies.  Rising sea levels will kill us all; never mind that sea level has been rising since the end of the last ice-age, and there's no hint that it is, in fact, speeding up.  Projected global warming (dubious on it own) is far less than the daily variation of temperature we currently experience, but it's doom and gloom and death by heat, although death by cold is far more prevalent.

I don't mind if he gets his chance to propagandize the kids (and he does) but I would demand the opportunity to either balance the curriculum, and present the counter arguments.  The answer to bad arguments is good arguments, not a resort to silencing those with contrary views.  Unlike the radical environmentalists I trust the people to sort through the facts, and find what works for the society as a whole.

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