Environmentalists suffer from the victim mentality; they always seem to think that humanity is killing the planet. Industrial pollution, climate change, and endangered species are some of what’s touted as the inevitable costs of technological innovation. What these “friends of the earth” don’t understand is how amazingly resilient the earth actually is.
Intellectually honest university professors will tell you that raw data can be manipulated to support just about anything. Fremont, California has approximately the same population density as Bangladesh, yet the author doesn’t see any environmentalists whining about how Fremont is “overpopulated.” Certain nations like Somalia are suffering from famines despite the huge stores of food donated from various other countries; might it be possible that these famines were artificially contrived by the local warlords (and their counterparts on the international stage) in order to control the domestic population by using access to food as a weapon? The Endangered Species Act of 1973 is one of the best examples that illustrate the phenomenon of unintended consequences.
Propaganda has been used relentlessly by environmentalists to trick people into supporting non-causes. Al Gore’s Earth in the Balance used deceptive phrasing, such as “the global ecological crisis,” “a rapidly deteriorating global environment,” and of course, “the dangerous truth about what we are doing to the earth.” O’Rourke goes on to compare mainline (i.e statist) environmentalism with the failure of Communism:
“If increased political power over the individual is the answer to environmental difficulties, then let us go examine the ecological conditions in a region that had half a century of coordination like Billy Hell and collectivity in carload lots.
“There was no shortage of political power in Eastern Europe’s Communist bloc. And, when it seemed as though government regulatory influence over individuals might be slipping – such as it did in Hungary in 1956 or Czechoslovakia in 1968 – the helpful Soviet Union sent tanks.”
Multiculturalism is a perversion upon the concept of genuine tolerance, for it emphasizes the false notion of “collective rights” that is the foundation for alleged “minority empowerment.” Even plagues have been relentlessly politicized, for it gives the State the perfect pretext for attacking the population directly under the guise of trying to apprehend the spread of an invisible “enemy.”
P.J. O’Rourke’s All the Trouble in the World: The Lighter Side of Overpopulation, Famine, Ecological Disaster, Ethnic Hatred, Plague, and Poverty is a humorous look at the fake justifications made by some types of statists for government intervention regarding the planet itself. It also provides good examples for how some people will artificially manufacture non-existent problems out of thin air. By highlighting the fallacies used by these statist environmentalists, O’Rourke provides a much needed respite from the fear mongering of these Chicken Littles who besiege our individual psyches.