Environmentalism: Man is Earth’s Enemy?
Why is their focus not on the brilliant sky and our productive harmony under it, but on the small column of smoke coming from a ship’s engine? Why do they look, not at the limitless countryside, but at the small rectangle advertising products of free trade along the highways which they also hate? Civilization cannot exist harvesting what grows in the wild without our control. A handful of men might be able to survive running through forests, eating berries, building huts from dead branches—but not an industrial society.
The most extreme claim we must not disturb a blade of grass. To tread is wrong in itself; for Man to live is an affront to all that which exists in harmony, only without us. Yet as productive men, we tie our lives to the very fabric of nature, as there are only two ways to live—off the land, or off of each other. By intellectual default, they promote this last. Speaking to the extreme environmentalists, “Let’s grant your wish hypothetically, and let you knock down all the smoke stacks. Running errands, you go to the grocery store and stare in horror at the empty shelves. You planned to hit many more stores, but passing a number of closed gas stations, you get an ominous feeling and decide to conserve what’s in your tank. Getting the mail at home, you have an emergency tax bill to help cover all the unemployed you’ve just thrown out of work. Your boss calls to say that a major supplier’s factory has been mysteriously shut down, and your products can no longer be made—you’re out of work, too. No more paychecks and no more food, but what do you need them for? It’s a beautiful day. You have a blissful, pollution-free world to gaze at while you die.”
All elements of an idea must be known in order to maintain its result properly, be it a business, an agricultural supply-line or a philosophy. There is no way to scale back intelligence and still benefit from what it produces. No expropriation is successful long-term, when the tops are cut down to force solutions to questions the environmentalists have no civil answer for, and no tolerance or mental discipline to reach. Do we see great technological advances out of the Roman Catholic Church? Out of Greenpeace? Out of Ralph Nader? No; only criticism, threats, and demands. They operate from a fixed mind, so they imagine all values to be fixed as well. They see a fixed amount of oil on the planet and a fixed amount of food. They determine that there is only so much to go around and grant no consideration for Man’s continuous efficiencies, which extrapolate the preservation, bounty, and longevity of raw materials. No faith is placed in Man’s mind, because those who focus on this never-ending stream of panicked contrivances have negated theirs. Ultimately, the advances to lessen our environmental impact will most likely come from the same disciplined thinkers who gave us automobiles, computers, and running water.
To the environmentalist’s credit, some have uncovered instances of abuse that are truly deplorable. I have watched footage of Japanese fishing boats cutting fins off sharks and dumping the bodies (exploiting the high profit “shark-fin soup” market), leaving them to endure a horrible death. As a supporter of free enterprise, a sinking feeling had to ask, “Is this what I represent?” The answer is no. Such waste and inefficiency would be clobbered in a laissez-faire economy where businesses pay for their raw materials. But they get the fish for nothing—incurring no cost or penalty above honest fishing vessels for wasting their stock. They wouldn’t be so wasteful with ponds they own. If I was in a ship close by, I wouldn’t think twice about putting a torpedo through their hull. Oops! Survival of the fittest… We are best served as capitalists to remain aware of the motives behind what is done in our name. Man’s rights do not include piracy or rape. My respect for all life disallows supporting such heartbreaking, inhumane wastefulness.
An integrated path that respects human life must be formed, and awareness of that is spreading. Civilization must be maintained, and of course we must be responsible for our actions—maximizing utilization of the products we draw from the ground or the water—which is simply good business sense. Mankind is not in a struggle opposed to nature. One doesn’t have to go—it isn’t either/or anymore. Listen to the Discovery Channel and you will see their pitches for nature beginning to show respect for industry—which is respect for human life—bringing environmentalism around to reason finally, and I’m glad to support this frame of mind.