by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Whale oil provided the lighting to read the breakthrough novel of 1870, the story of Captain Nemo in 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea. That was also the year of the foundation of Standard Oil. The result of that foundation is that we didn’t hunt the whales to extinction, but instead turned to kerosene to light the latter part of the 19th century, moving to electricity only in the 20th.
It really isn’t hyperbole to insist that John D. Rockefeller saved the whales by his making mineral oil products so much cheaper than the cetacean-derived equivalent. And that’s really all you need to know to understand Earth Day and what to do about it.
We need to be as viciously capitalist and free market as we can to save the planet.
This is not, as you will note, what is generally said about this day of celebration of all things environmental. Yet it’s still the truth. …
… So, if we want the environment to get better, Mother Earth to heal her wounds, Gaia to recover, etc., we need to go pell for leather in making the world’s poorest as rich as possible as fast as possible. That’s the pre-condition for people to care enough to do all of those things which we know will benefit the environment.
The excellent news is we know how to do that.