Linked here is an excellent article by Victor Davis Hansen that pretty sums up how the boneheads in San Fran and LA have completely screwed up a state that at one time was the world’s fourth leading economy.
It also highlights, in my opinion, the hypocrisy of the leftist-led environmental movement. The left screamed that water rights to the Central Valley farmers needed to be cut drastically or eliminated completely over a tiny little three inch fish. I am not so heartless that preserving the environment is a worthwhile endeavor; I really do think there needs to be a balance. And we are smart enough to make it happen. But it seems to me that the leftist are never interested in working to achieve this balance; they are only interested in what they want, consequences to humans be danged.
But in this case the environmentalist based their entire case for saving the delta smelt on one utterly biased study. As pointed out in the article, even after the water cuts to farmers were made, the fish has not shown any signs of recovery. The article further points out that the environmentalist aren’t even able to concede that maybe it wasn’t the water diversion that is causing the problem, but rather the discharge of treated water may actually be the culprit.
Where the hypocrisy comes into the play is how when there is one study that supports their cause it is enough to bolster their argument and take it into a friendly court. But when the concern is something like oil exploration or mining, no amount of environmental studies is enough to allow a project to move forward. The environmentalist cry that more studies need to be done, especially when previous studies show that the mining or oil exploration will do little to no environmental damage.
It reminds me of the spotted owl issue that nearly shut down the lumber industry in the PACNW, and for which many local economies is still struggling to overcome, even 25 years later. The environmentalist latched on to a study that showed the spotted owl could only survive in old- or second growth timber. There were other studies out there that showed this might not actually be the case. But the environmentalist prevailed. Towns like Toledo, OR, Lincoln City, OR and Forks, WA have never completely recovered. Some towns have actually disappeared. Oh sure, many of these towns now support robust tourism (when the overall economy is humming). But these tourism related jobs can in no way replace the high-paying timber harvesting and processing jobs that were once abundant up and down the Oregon and Washington coast and Cascade mountain ranges.
As it turns out, the spotted owl was quite able to adapt to a wide variety of terrain and environmental conditions, which one study did point out. The spotted owl now flourishes, in old growth stands, second growth stands and stand of timber that are harvested like slow-growing corn. Even to this day, I’d be willing to bet you would be hard pressed to find an environmentalist who would be willing to concede that maybe they were wrong.