06 August 2010

Richard Nixon Environmental Hero

There was a time prior to 1980 when both Repubes and Dems took the environment seriously. Unfortunately, Saint Ronnie the Rotten Raisin changed all that starting in the 1980's. Here are some excerpts from Richard Nixon:

I have become convinced that the 1970’s absolutely must be the years when America pays its debt to the past by reclaiming the purity of its air, its waters, and our living environment. It is literally now or never.
Nixon’s Signing Statement for the National Environmental Policy Act, 1 January 1970

Richard Nixon emphasized the environments importance to him by prefacing the signing with some remarks. He was at ease —he even joked a bit with the reporters— but there was no mistaking how seriously he took the legislation and the occasion:
As you know, the bill we are signing today is the environmental bill. There is one line in there that I am particularly stimulated by, when I said we had to work on the environment because it is now or never.
If you look ahead 10 years, you project population growth, car growth, and that means, of course, smog growth, water pollution, and the rest.
An area like this will be unfit for living; New York will be, Philadelphia, and, of course, 75 percent of the people will be living in areas like this.
So unless we start moving on it now-there is a lead time–unless we move on it now, believe me, we will not have an opportunity to do it later, because then when people have millions more automobiles, and, of course, the waters and so forth developing in the way that they do without plants for purification, once the damage is done, it is much harder to turn it around. It is going to be hard as it is.
That is why I indicate here that a major goal, when you talk about New Year’s resolutions, I wouldn’t say for the next year but for the next 10 years–and I don’t mean that I intend to run for a third term–for the next 10 years for this country must be to restore the cleanliness of the air, the water, and that, of course, means moving also on the broader problems of population congestion, transport, and the like.

ASK YOURSELF, "What are the chances we could create the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act or the EPA in today's political environment?" If you answer this question honestly, you will realize just how screwed we are!

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