June 25th 2008
he first Earth Day, April 22, 1970, found me in Dunn Meadow on the Indiana University campus, my hair down to my shoulders, weighing in at about 148 pounds, and believing every fatalistic word of the Earth Day message of impending doom.
Why not? After all, exactly ten months earlier, the Cuyahoga River had caught fire in Cleveland.
Alar got me out of the movement 18 years later. The National Resources Defense Council paid the PR firm Fenton Communications $26,000 to drum up hysteria over the NRDC’s shoddy scientific study, “Intolerable Risk: Pesticides in Our Children’s Food.” They may have termed it environmental education, but it was also fund-raising and fear-mongering, and it worked:
Working together, Fenton and NRDC did something unprecedented—they saturated the media with scare-stories about Alar. A top Fenton executive documented the campaign’s successes in a memo written after the PR guns had fallen silent:
“Media coverage,” he boasted, “included two segments on CBS 60 Minutes, the covers of Time and Newsweek…the Phil Donahue show, multiple appearances on Today, Good Morning America, and CBS This Morning, several stories on each of the network evening newscasts, MacNeil/Lehrer, multiple stories in the N.Y. Times, Washington Post, L.A. Times and newspapers around the country, three stories in USA Today, People, four women’s magazines with a combined circulation of 17 million (Redbook, Family Circle, Women’s Day and New Woman), and thousands of repeat stories in local media around the nation and world…” (CEI)
Then Meryl Streep jumped on board and celebrity environmental activism was invented. Pity the poor hapless apple farmers.
The media still doesn’t get it and play into the hand of the Greenies just as naively today as they did then. Or, more likely, they do get it, and play into the hand of the Greenies.
As with all things, there are good environmentalists and bad ones. The good ones are (ahem!) a lot like me, cut from conservationist cloth, wanting to make practical reasons that don’t waste time or resources on tilting at windmills, and desirous of a healthy environment. These are not the folks I refer to when I say “Greenies.”
For the others, the Greenies, environmentalism has become a love affair between Gaea and Lenin. They don’t want a single molecule of Mother Earth to be harmed, and endorse policies and tactics to force their religion on the rest of us that would have made Lenin (and Obamarx) proud.
My public affairs firm works hard to help public agencies and private businesses weave through the almost impenetrable regulatory thicket created by the savvy lawyers and lobbyists of the environmental movement. It’s a good business because we represent progress and careful, environmentally sensitive change, while they represent moving backwards.
Environmentalism, global warming and other news from the radical environmental movement are great blog-fodder for Cheat-Seeking Missiles. For compilations, go to the “Categories” section of the home page and click on Enviros, Global Warming or Radicals.
Comments? You can always reach me at email2laer[@]yahoo[dot]com.
No Comments yet »
Leave a Reply
[The "Comment Box" is WYSIWYG except that you have to double space between paragraphs!
Type it the way you want it to look -- Just remember to double up those line spaces.]
You must be logged in to post a comment.