Although the Bush administration is only 7 years old, I would still hope it would act more mature than my 6 year-old. After reading the administration's 588 page response to the Supreme Court's order that it consider whether greenhouse gases endanger public health or welfare, however, I'm thinking my son has the edge.
The Latest On: Bush administration
Utah land management plans - covering 11 million acres - will invite off-road vehicle destruction, energy development in spectacular, fragile landscape.
The Denver Post reported last Sunday about a series of nasty schemes that the Bush Administration hopes to finalize in its remaining 200-odd days in power.
One recurring theme among environmentalists, regularly confirmed by pollsters, is that concern over environmental issues seldom guides the way people vote, especially for president. People care, no doubt about that, but generally something else—crime, war, the economy, party loyalty—tips the balance one way or another.
This time will be interesting to watch. There's little question whether global warming will be under discussion—it will be, with the two candidates arguing whose approach will work better, faster. I'm hoping it won't stop there—we need a robust debate about a wide range of environmental issues, from the loss of species to the collapse of the oceans to energy policy. Such matters generally get lost in the clangor of sound bites and spin mongering, but maybe this time will be different.
The fix the planet finds itself in, a predicament that worsens daily, is largely the result of human mismanagement and hubris: too much consumption of all the resources you can think of—fossil fuels, metals, topsoil, fish—by too many people.
I could show you reports and articles from 35 years ago that predicted all this (not yet on-line, for better or for worse), but few listened. It's about time someone did, and an election, for all its excesses and hype, is a time when the media pay some attention to actual issues. Let's hope this time the candidates will talk about what really matters.
The Bush administration has had a strange way of uniting folks in the West. In particular, hunters, sportsmen, local communities, local businesses and enviros have come together to fight back when the "drill it all" mentality of the oil businessman president ran into treasured publc lands.
Today Americans first learned that former White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan has written a tell-all book about his years in the Bush Administration.
According to press accounts, the administration was less than candid with the American people. McClellan now believes he told numerous untruths on behalf of the administration. While the administration will certainly dispute McClellan's account, the whole issue begs the question.
Aah, summer! Time to hit the road and visit some our crown jewel national parks here in the West. It's time to enjoy the trees, the canyons, the birds, bees, and bears, the ranger talks, the smog.
The smog? Yep, get ready for it. Because if the EPA has its way, the tremendous views from Mesa Verde, Zion, and other national parks will become more obscured with haze.
As the Washington Post succinctly put it on May 16:
We don't get very many comments here at Tom's Turn—please comment!—so when we do, we pay attention. To this one, for example, from Brenda Hixenbaugh:
"Considering the track records of certain officials, isn't it time that we get people elected who are directly connected to all of this planet's and our needs? Surely there are a great number of environmentalists who are qualified for all of these jobs, up to and not excluding the presidency?"
"Some courts are taking laws written more than 30 years ago to primarily address local and regional environmental effects, and applying them to global climate change. The Clean Air Act, the Endangered Species Act, and the National Environmental Policy Act were never meant to regulate global climate change." —George W. Bush, April 16, 2008
What's the best expression to describe the Bush administration these days? Pig-headed? Stubborn? Incorrigible? Mulish? Headstrong? Dogged? Intractable, Recalcitrant, Rigid? Willful? Indeed, all those adjectives apply to the outgoing (not soon enough) Bush administration, particularly with respect to its environmental activities. A handful of illustrations.