Environmentalism

Nature as Miser

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A POPULIST IS SOMEONE WHO who believes scarcity is a capitalist plot. If only social arrangements were otherwise, he believes, mankind would enjoy a boundless cornucopia of goods and never want again. The populist thus assumes that our current economic institutions, such as the price system, are merely devices controlled by producers to withhold needed goods and to gouge ... [click for more]

The Most Dangerous Substance of All

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For all our preoccupation with ridding society of cocaine, heroin, and marijuana, little thought is given to the most dangerous mind-altering substance of all: ink. Do you doubters need proof? Take Rachel Carson’s famous book, Silent Spring. In 1963 Carson wrote a book claiming that the insecticide DDT was damaging ... [click for more]

Dictatorship out of Thin Air

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FEDERAL ENVIRONMENTAL LAWS turn bureaucrats into dictators who need not care a whit about public health. Instead, federal agencies blindly pursue both power and publicity. The result is one absurdity after another — and scant attention for the real health threats that Americans face. On July 12, 1999, the Justice Department announced that it was suing Toyota for $58 billion ... [click for more]

Beware the Conservationists

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When politicians and political activists talk about conservation, I know I am about to be mugged. New calls for conservation have come out of the power fiasco in California. The great urban legend of our time is that California’s problem resulted from deregulation of electricity. That’s a laugh. What ... [click for more]

Politicians Can Pollute Too

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Politicians use language differently from the rest of us. Take the expression “Big Polluters.” Apparently there are entire industries that do nothing but pollute. Big Oil produces oil. Big Pharmaceuticals produce medicines. So Big Polluters presumably produce air and water pollution. What’s more, they somehow make big ... [click for more]

Lynching

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The most refreshing reporter on television, ABC's John Stossel, is the target of nothing less than the modern equivalent of a lynching. Stossel is the popular investigative reporter who focuses on scientifically dubious consumerism and environmentalism. On a recent 20/20 segment he took up -- and debunked -- the ... [click for more]

Robbery with an Environmental Badge

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As the federal government has devoted itself to rescuing Americans from more perils, fair treatment of individuals is a luxury that the government can no longer afford. Few programs better illustrate the modern contempt for due process than Superfund. Congress enacted Superfund in 1980 to deal with the problem of abandoned hazardous waste sites. Since 1980, the Environmental Protection Agency ... [click for more]

The Hot Air Emanates from Washington

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The billions of new tax dollars President Clinton wishes to spend in the new fiscal year include $4 billion to stem global warming. The Associated Press reports that Mr. Clinton wants an "aggressive, common-sense" strategy to save the planet from the man-made "greenhouse effect." The strategy calls for big ... [click for more]

Endangered: Property Rights

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The rights of hundreds of thousands of Americans have been shredded by federal proclamations of the sanctity of species such as the Soccorro isopod, the Texas wild-rice plant, the fringe-toed lizard, the kanab ambersnail, and fairy shrimp. At the time the Endangered Species Act (ESA) was enacted in 1973, most congressmen and most Americans believed that the act would ... [click for more]

Our Ultimate Resource Gone

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On February 8, economist Julian Simon died. It is a grave loss on many levels. He was, first of all, a wonderful human being -- ever positive, smiling, and encouraging; a complete joy to be around. After that, he was one of freedom's great crusaders. When our age was ... [click for more]

The Price of Junk Science

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The Clinton administration knows how to add insult to injury. Not only is it committed to an environmental program that will sap the American economy of its vitality, it also refuses to level with the American people about the costs. At the global warming conference in Kyoto, Japan, the ... [click for more]

Private Ownership and the Environment

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When it comes to "environmentalism," it is presumed by many that government is the only game in town. At least that is the message of radical environmentalists, who see private enterprise as the villain and the public sector as the white knight. That perspective is being challenged by a growing number of scientists and public scholars advancing what is known ... [click for more]
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