By Anthony J. Gerst.
So, today looking at the Sierra Club we will bring you some action updates. I have always had an appreciation for this organization. It wasn’t until this morning that I could recall where this respect for them came from. As you advance in age, you to will seek out reasons for things within your past, it is part of getting older; sorry to burst your bubble. My step grandfather was an interesting man, the only G-pa I’ve ever known. With his handlebar mustache and mannerism, Grandpa came across like an Indian Jones.
He told me ‘boy you ever get a chance to be in the Masons, do it. ‘They make things happen great business partners.’ When I was a boy the only mason I knew of was Charles Manson (lol), I thought grandpa was a little off on that one. His stories about Sierra Club individuals always revolved around the Rocky Mountains; he was a born story-teller. It was at this time in life that I developed an appreciation for anything beyond the mono-crop of corn, and my interest in the world began. If memory serves me well, it was then my parents subscribed my siblings and I to National Geographic.
Ok so you get the idea, Grandpa had his hands in, literally, when several of the big projects were done during the CCC era. The most famous thing I can rapidly recall is the Hoover Dam, being a concrete finisher I wonder if any of his work is still visible today? My grandfather loved nature. I wonder what he’d think of the world today, and the role he played in creating several of the projects that environmentalists lament upon.
Growing up on a farm I had ample opportunity to explore the woods. Living close to several rivers, there where many streams available for exploration. How sad is it today that streams are endangered again despite the Clean Water Act, and several other pieces of hard fought for legislation, which has been undermined by our current corporate regime.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that mining next to a stream or through one is a dangerous operation. Even if you don’t care about the environmental impacts, you risk polluting water supplies and are endangering the surrounding communities’ water resources. So does it surprise you to find that the Office of Surface Mining has proposed a new policy that would repeal the “stream buffer zone rule?” There are very few remaining protections left safeguarding streams and wetlands in this nation. Personally I think we have enough Mercury and Slurry in our waters.
From millions of acres of CRP land that are being released into production, to the demise of environmental regulations, unto the hostile take-over of the EPA’s leadership with corporate kiss-asses, we are in trouble. Another blast form the past has recently come back to haunt citizens from coast to coast. It amazes me that we face poisoning our children with lead again in this nation. My mother loved spring cleaning; she would rearrange the entire house, so I can recall painting many walls in the 1970’s with lead-based paint.
So with the grand design of globalization upon us, what does Bush do? They cut funding for testing of overseas imports on everything. So from food to cloths to baby toys we are open to unknown dangers. I have studied this issue enough to tell you that China is far from the only polluter of our nation’s merchandise. They hit the spotlight because of quantity. If we are going to play in a global market we need to enforce and create better international standards of production and expand upon testing products imported into this nation. Food imports used to be checked at a 4 percent rate, that is now under one percent. The Consumer Product Safety Commission has only one inspector conducting tests on consumer safety for the entire nation. This administration was elected because it represents Christian ideals, give me a break, I want Bushco’s PR people for six months.
On Nov. 16 the congress will leave for their Thanksgiving break, with any luck they will have the new Energy Bill done. My own opinion is that not enough is being accomplished, but hey, I am ‘a glass is kind of half empty type of guy.’ On the 14th, the Sierra Club is hosting house parties across the nation pertaining to energy usage.
Should you be interested in holding a party to encourage your associates to take action: Host a clean energy house party.