Written by Daniel Greenfield
No other group has done as much to keep America dependent on foreign oil as the environmentalists have. After leading successful campaigns against nuclear power and domestic drilling, the green movement may lecture on "oil wars", but it is responsible for most of them.
The math of it is very simple. Resource shortages are a major cause of conflict. And environmentalists have dedicated themselves to creating resource shortages in prosperous nations. Their campaigns against nuclear, domestic oil and coal production have been big on self-righteousness and short on consequences. And the consequences are that their scaremongering has not only cost millions of American jobs, it has forced us to keep sending money to Muslim oil states who use that money for domestic repression and international terrorism.
The environmentalists have done the same thing in Europe and Asia, turning formerly moribund Communist powers, Russia and China, into energy and manufacturing superpowers. By making it more expensive and in some cases impossible to conduct manufacturing and energy production at home, they exported Western industries to the East, and enabled the transformation of struggling tyrannies into international superpowers.
China's domestic repression is made possible by its economic boom. A boom created when American companies found it cheaper to do business in a country where they weren't under siege by college grads with a specialty in pretending to be Rachel Carson or Erin Brockovich, both frauds turned into legends thanks to the mythmaking abilities of the left-wing movement.
The legacy of Tiananmen Square would almost certainly have been reform or revolution, if not for a limited prosperity created through outsourced industries and cheap manufacturing. When the question arises, who killed the pro-democracy movement in China-- it wasn't the tanks, but their enablers, the liberals whose regulation and exploitation had made America into an uncomfortable place to do business. Those companies went elsewhere and the money they brought, propped up the Chinese Communist party. And the industries of the Chinese boom created such intense pollution that it is worse than the worst nightmares of the environmentalists. Pollution that they can and should take credit for, because they were the ones who made it happen.
Environmentalists who agitate against pollution caused by foreign companies in the Third World need to take a long hard look in the mirror. In many cases it was their own campaigns which drove American companies into countries where they wouldn't be so tightly regulated. Rather than apply reasonable regulations, they made it their goal to wipe out entire industries. They didn't get their wish. Rather those industries moved abroad to places where there were no regulations at all. And the resulting misery that caused lies at their doorstep.
In Germany, the Greens have succeeded in their campaign against the domestic nuclear industry. What is the net result of this? It further degrades Europe's energy capabilities and moves it into Putin's orbit. That empowers Russia to begin another campaign of conquest aimed at its former republics. That is what a "Green" victory really looks like. People freezing in their homes while a dictatorship sends its tanks and infantry on a new campaign of terror.
The environmental response is always something about solar and wind energy, two technologies that are still unready to meet a major country's energy needs. But that's exactly why the environmental movement champions them. Aside from the optics of "getting your energy from mother nature", the real goal has always been to drive up the cost of energy. The environmental movement is not interested in cheap energy. If solar power provided energy cheaply, the greens would be marching against it. Any technology that provides cheap power is their enemy.
The mandate of the environmental movement is artificial scarcity. But artificial scarcity doesn't exist in a global economy. If you raise the price of energy production, resource mining or manufacturing, it will move abroad to less regulated countries. The price will still go up and there will be other long term consequences, but people will still find a way to get what they need. Like the rest of the left, the green movement has never learned that people will act in their own interests, rather than in thrall to their dogma. That if they can't get it legally, they will get it illegally.
Americans are not about to freeze in their homes in winter or die of heatstroke in the summer. They are not about to drive midget cars to the lumber yard or let their families go hungry so that they can buy local. And that means more money flowing to Saudi Arabia and to China. It means more war and more repression. It means more families making do without and more firing squads and terrorist attacks. All for the greater glory of the environmental movement.
It will take a lot more work to push down the poverty level to the extent that Americans will bike to work or root through the garbage for food-- two behaviors popular in the environmentally pretentious left. Until then there will always be other options. No matter how bad they are.
Wal-Mart owes more to the left's war on small business and manufacturing than either would care to recognize. Its Made in China merchandise sold at the lowest possible price is the aftermath of an outsourced economy which has brought formerly prosperous towns to the poverty level, and compensated for it with cheap goods from the country that has taken their industries. The left has created the poverty that it mocks. And it has created the slave labor that makes the products which they deplore. It is responsible for all of it and it should take ownership of it.
And as China approaches a new war for Pacific dominance, the left may as well take credit for that too. If it wasn't for the shift in economic power, driven by their job killing regulations, and their spending sprees, there might be reforms happening in Bejing, instead of the clatter of factories and war machines. And if a war does come, if tens of thousands or millions die, then it too will be on their heads. Along with the clouds of pollution and the body parts of political prisoners being shipped to America for their edification and exhibition.
These are just some of the green chickens coming home to roost. And there will be lots more of them flocking on over if this goes on.
The environmental movement's manifest hypocrisy is that it causes the very things that it deplores. Its campaigns against the nuclear industry, has sent billions overseas to countries which are developing their own nuclear weapons and intend to use them. By shutting down nuclear plants in America, they have made it much more likely that nuclear bombs will be detonated in America.
It destroyed American industry in the name of worker protection and pollution, and sent the factories to countries where workers have no rights and the pollution looks like something out of a post-apocalyptic movie. And reduced those former workers to the point where they have no choice but to buy those same slave labor products at a non-union store with the profits going to China's war machine.
Domestic drilling? Allah preserve us. It's much better to send the money over to Saudi Arabia, which funnels it to terrorists, who kill Americans, and cause global wars. Wars that the left claims to deplore. Oil wars. Their own damn oil wars. Wars in which they are equal partners with the oil companies and the Gulf royal families who have fattened their pockets from the energy hunger of a country where there is plenty of oil, but no way to get at it.
These are all victories for the environmental movements and defeats for anyone with any sanity or sense. But the environmental movement refuses to acknowledge the consequences of its actions. Instead it champions further domestic and international repression. Like every tyrannical ideology it knows only one solution to every problem, more laws, more chains, more investigations and prison cells for anyone who disobeys.
Repression and propaganda is the environmental movement's solution to everything. Its imperative is to destroy, impoverish, oppress and intimidate. It spreads hopeless misery around the world, with a smile. The countless victims of Rachel Carson's malaria or the prisoners of the EPA go unnoticed as the latest children's propaganda cartoon is rolled out. Its implicit message is always that there is a war on between the environmentalists and the people who just want to live their own lives. And that it is the obligation of the youth to put on their uniforms and enlist on their side.
Generations of tyranny later, the environmental movement has little positive to show for it, besides a few cleanups. But its leaders have profited from a regulatory state that impoverishes the country and promotes war and oppression around the world. It is time for those who have chosen to align themselves with a movement that exists to enrich environmental consultants, Saudi Arabia, the People's Republic of China and Wall Street, while impoverishing Main Street to take a long hard look at what they have done. Before all the chickens really do come home to roost.
From NY to·Jerusalem·, Daniel Greenfield Covers the Stories·Behind the News. Daniel Greenfield is a blogger, author and columnists covering international affairs, the rising threat of terrorism and the growing problems of socialism. His daily blog can be viewed at·Sultan Knish.