One of Dr. J.’s colleagues posted this meme on his Facebook page. It is emblematic with the problems of environmental leftists in particular and leftists in general.
Their point is obvious. The pollution in cities in the early 1970s was so bad that Nixon’s (wait, he was a lefty Democrat, oh yeah, he was a lefty Republican) creation, the EPA government regulation are to thank for the clean air, water, and land that we enjoy today. After all, pollution is not a cause celebré on ‘very special episodes’ of television programs, and Ad Council PSAs (what’s Iron Eyes Cody been up to lately?) like they were in the 70s.
By extension, the meme implies that if the current regulatory climate is good, think of how awesome it would be if President Obama is given everything he wants on his environmental agenda! We could drink water from the gutters on Broad Street in Philly and Bourbon Street in New Orleans. We could perform an appendectomy in Times Square!
By further extension it implies that those evil rethuglicans™ and libertarians are closet anarchists who want government dissolved so they can rule by the extreme prejudice of their .357 Magnums (Magna?, Volgi, help Dr. J. out here?).
The reality is that Republicans and conservatives are not anarchists who want no government. What we want is ‘sensible regulation’ which means that, from an environmental point of view, rules are in place that keep the environment sufficiently clean that folks won’t get sick, but not sufficiently clean that there is economic harm with no health benefit.
Clean water and septic sewer lines were the biggest cause of human longevity in the 20th century, yes, more than than antibiotics. Acid rain damages buildings and isn’t good for people. Appropriate handling of toxic waste is a good thing, inappropriate dumping is a bad thing. Lead paint tastes good but causes brain damage.
That being said, the current wave of regulation stands to damage the economy with no legitimate scientific basis for benefit. Furthermore, given that there are true polluters in the world, we shouldn’t lift a finger tightening our so-called carbon footprint or even our legitimate pollution footprint further until those offenders get to our already high standard.
Dr. J. is amazed at the stupidity of the left when they create memes that undermine their own arguments.