Saturday, May 31, 2008

The Ultimate Salvation: Environmentalism; And The Ultimate Commandment: Carbon Chastity

For a century, an ambitious, arrogant, unscrupulous knowledge class -- social planners, scientists, intellectuals, experts and their left-wing political allies -- arrogated to themselves the right to rule either in the name of the oppressed working class (communism) or, in its more benign form, by virtue of their superior expertise in achieving the highest social progress by means of state planning (socialism).

Two decades ago, however, socialism and communism died rudely, then were buried forever by the empirical demonstration of the superiority of market capitalism everywhere from Thatcher's England to Deng's China, where just the partial abolition of socialism lifted more people out of poverty more rapidly than ever in human history.

Just as the ash heap of history beckoned, the intellectual left was handed the ultimate salvation: environmentalism. Now the experts will regulate your life not in the name of the proletariat or Fabian socialism but -- even better -- in the name of Earth itself.

Environmentalists are Gaia's priests, instructing us in her proper service and casting out those who refuse to genuflect. And having proclaimed the ultimate commandment -- carbon chastity -- they are preparing the supporting canonical legislation that will tell you how much you can travel, what kind of light you will read by, and at what temperature you may set your bedroom thermostat.

~Charles Krauthammer, Environmentalists Pick Up Where Communists Left Off


At 5/31/2008 10:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As usual, Charles hits the nail on the head.

Unfortunately, exaggerating the danger by skewing the evidence, creating a public outcry, attacking any scientist who expresses a contrary view, and jumping from a scientific debate to a mass political pressure movement has been used successfully in the past.

Rachel Carson created the model with Silent Spring and as a result a million people a year die of malaria most of them young children due to the banning of DDT for political rather than scientific reasons. Even the WHO now recommends interior spraying as the most effective preventative for malaria ever invented in history.

Unfortunately, the consequences of global warming are not only governmental control but a far lower standard of living since eliminating carbon output is extremely difficult because carbon dioxide is a very simple chemical compound (a molecule of one carbon & 2 oxygen atoms). We produce it by just exhaling.

Personally, I am looking forward to the aging of the boomer generation and the ash heap for the dumb ideas of the 1960s & 1970s.

At 5/31/2008 12:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The world is beset by a group of religious fanatics - so what else is new in the history of the human race?

At 5/31/2008 2:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

> attacking any scientist who
> expresses a contrary view

Scientists do this in all scientific fields and have done it throughout history. It's how the field advances.

> due to the banning of DDT for
> political rather than scientific
> reasons.

"DDT has never been banned for anti-malarial uses, and that it is in use in at least 11 countries."
-- John Quiggin and Tim Lambert, Prospect Magazine, May 2008

At 5/31/2008 4:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you honestly believe that malaria is only present in 11 countries? DDT was originally banned for agricultural applications however, western environmentalists continue to lobby against the use of DDT in any application including malarial control.

Dr. Patrick Moore was one of over 3,000 scientists and humanitarians who petitioned the WHO to support the use of DDT for malarial control which the WHO has finally done. The fact that the international community and the WHO had abandoned DDT prevention programs for decades is a matter of public record.

John Quiggin and Tim Lambert cannot change the history of DDT use in malarial control and its phasing out by the international community:

Fortunately, there are those who continue to fight for the rights of the poor in sub-Saharan africa to a disease free existence.

At 6/01/2008 9:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If DDT is such a great thing, why aren't we using it in the US and why aren't the Europeans using it?

Because it's a serious poison. It might be a carcinogen. It also harms lots of birds and other animals, and the environment.

It's negative health consequences have been very well studied.

Good enough for the Africans, but not good enough for us?

At 6/01/2008 7:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

According to the World Health Organization, DDT eliminated malaria "from Europe, the former U.S.S.R., several countries in Asia and the Caribbean. About 700 million people, or more than half of the previously exposed populations, were no longer at risk". The U.S. used DDT to successfully get rid of yellow fever, and sleeping sickness. See report on indoor residual spraying:

For a review of the studies and the "facts" purported by Rachel Carson see:

You can download the 76 studies to verify the assertions of Dr. J. Gordon Edwards, Ph.D.

What DDT is very effective at killing insects (all insects) and keeps killing insects. The recent colony collapse among European honeybees underscores the importance of insects and emphasizes why a persistent chemical like DDT is completely inappropriate for agricultural usage. How many people care about insects?

Interior spraying for malaria involves spraying trace amounts on interior walls of houses twice a year.

Malaria is a disease of poverty. Singapore does not have malaria largely because houses have screens, doors & windows. By contrast, mosquitos live in the thatch of houses in sub-Saharan africa and breed in trenches next to the houses. Open doors and windows allow mosquitos to come & go with ease.

There is a tremendous economic burden associated with malaria. Some countries have as many as 1/2 of the hospital visits associated with malaria.

DDT was plenty good enough for us but too good for Africans. Came across a very chilling quote from one of the founders of the Club of Rome that his problem with DDT was that it would save lives in Africa.

We may well need DDT again. Was recently reading in the Wall St. Journal that a terrorist could very easily spread a vector born disease at a cost of only a few hundred dollars (I believe that the disease suggested was Nile Rift Valley fever just a few hours by plane away). A disease transmitted by mosquito could kill hundreds of thousands of Americans making 9-11 look like amateur night. There is already a historical precedent for using a vector to spread disease, the Japanese did this to China during WWII.

As to toxicity, if you look it up, you find that DDT is not highly toxic. Human volunteers in Georgia ingested up to 35 milligrams daily for nearly 2 years and did not experience any health difficulties then or years later.

When I first read about this, I was extremely shocked since my brother has malaria fortunately, not the chloroquine resistant strain. I looked for large scale, long term health studies and downloaded them. I hunted down the toxicity ratings on the web. I downloaded DeWitt's quail/pheasant study to see if the results were as Silent Spring described. In other words, I did my homework rather than just taking someone's word for it.

I even wrote to Dr. Patrick Moore, founder of Greenpeace about this issue looking for answers. He replied:

"DDT is not that toxic and has never been shown to cause harm to humans. The story of the eggshell thinning in birds is now in considerable dispute as well."

Dr. Moore also wrote me of his participation on the Stop Malaria Now petition led by Bishop Desmond Tutu signed by over 3,000 scientists and humanitarians to urge the WHO and world governments to adopt DDT for malarial control. The WHO announced in Sept, 2006 that it would promote interior spraying of DDT in the prevention of malaria.

My quest started with a letter to the editor written by Stephen Milloy. He has devoted part of his website to this issue:

I encourage you to be skeptical and to find your own answers. Don't take my word or anyone else's.

One thing that I have learned is to check the footnotes and methodology on studies particularly with reports from public policy thinktanks. The media seldom look beyond the press release or evaluate the methodology.

Found a report reviewing the impact of tax cuts on families that used income from single adults in the data as statistical families of 1. The result was to lower the average family income to try to show that the tax cuts would have very little benefit to the average family. When I contacted the researcher, she wrote back that the Stats Canada database did not allow her to select only family income, a contention that was easily disproven by contacting Statistics Canada. Not a single news agency noticed and the report is still on the website of the organization without any amendment or clarification.

Have a nice weekend.

At 6/01/2008 7:56 PM, Blogger OBloodyHell said...

> If DDT is such a great thing, why aren't we using it in the US and why aren't the Europeans using it?

> Because it's a serious poison.

That's the point. It kills mosquitoes. Or did you miss that day in "common sense" class?

> It might be a carcinogen.

"Might" be?

You're going to DEFINITELY cause the deaths of a million or more a year because something "might" cause some of them to die 10 years earlier (i.e., at 60 or more) than they might otherwise as a result of exposure to DDT?

Hey, good logic there.

> It also harms lots of birds and other animals, and the environment.

It's been well documented that these claims were unsubstatiated, questionable, and certainly way overblown.

> Its negative health consequences have been very well studied.

And subsequently refuted at almost every turn.

> Good enough for the Africans, but not good enough for us?

1) We happen to be a lot richer. We are willing to spend more money on such -- because we have it to spend. Africans are not thus endowed.

2) Actually, yeah, it's good enough for us, too. The reasons for outlawing it in the first place have been demonstrated to be a complete crock (just like Naders' "Unsafe At Any Speed" crock of the same time period). The chief reason it would be difficult to restore sales here is because of ignorant fools protesting it from outdated and blatantly faulty "knowledge" just like yours. In short, the only reason it wouldn't be allowed here is mindless fearmongering, not valid social reasoning.

At 6/01/2008 11:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Thanks, it's nice to know that one is not alone. That someone gets it. That someone actually questions the pap that they are fed in school.

Rachel Carson may have thought that getting DDT out of agriculture was a good thing but she created incalculable misery and death. There are consequences to saying whatever it takes to get the job done.

Many people are still thinking in terms of Erlich's Population Bomb (ie. what's a few million Africans give or take?). Most have never heard of Norman Borlaug and the Green Revolution. Norman worked tirelessly to develop high yield crops to support the world's population. Highly recommend "The Man Who Fed Millions".

Nice to read about an American who worked tireless to save millions of lives. Makes a nice contrast to Rachel Carson, the gal who killed millions.


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