We Have a Small Problem & It's Green

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by Ed Cobb

There are mean-spirited people out there. People with agendas. You know the type: low down, dirty special interests. And they don't care.about the children. You are stirred to action, right? I can feel it through the broadband.

What can we do, you ask? How can we protect.the children? What unfeeling special interest is mounting this heinous, mean-spirited attack? Are the Republicans refusing to give the little ones free Ritalin? Is some conservative objecting to mandatory government pre-school beginning at viability? Is the Christian right threatening to withhold condoms until puberty? Is some Democrat not allowing his intern to take her nappy?

Identify the threat and we will smite it, you say. We know that it will be worth it, whatever the cost.if it will save even one life. Well, these are really mean spirited special interests. They are non-inclusive to the point of lacking bi-partisanship. Totally. And many thousands of lives will be saved. If we just do something. But who are they?

You might have met some of them at little Shania's soccer match. Their daughter is little Gaia, the one with the Nike earth shoes. They cynically call themselves "greens," as if that excuses something. Just trying to cash in on our sensitivity to the multicultural needs of people of all colors, if you ask me. Or perhaps they are merely green with envy? Or greed, more likely. Whatever their excuse, it makes me green around the gills to behold the way they place their own special interests above the safety of.the children.

No less a source than an actual newspaper columnist for an actual newspaper (well, sorta), the Boston Globe, the largest in the Peoples Republic of Massachusetts, the unofficial organ of the Kennedys (I mean that in a nice way) has reported this story. The columnist is so important to the Globe that he just got back from a big vacation they gave him, special just for him. Maybe you heard about it. It was all the talk.

He noticed the connection between high fuel economy standards (which the "greens" love really high), tiny automobiles (which the "greens" love really tiny) and the fact that people are doing the Teen Angel thing behind the wheel of these tiny cars at alarming rates (which disturbs the "greens" not at all). You see, for every mile per gallon that the "greens" get Congress to raise fuel efficiency standards an additional 7,700 American die in automobiles. Of course, many of those Americans are children. How do these "greens" sleep at night?

Here's the deal. The internal combustion engine and the allied technologies that go into making an automobile have been around for quite a while. The people who design these things are pretty good at it. They have pretty much optimized the technology. So when they were "greened" into major increases in miles per gallon there were not a lot of choices. Processes are not improved by fiat nor can technological improvements be regulated into existence in spite of what Congress might believe. In order to achieve these new requirements they made cars smaller and lighter, all around less substantial. What did they think would happen? Wrap a two-ton car around a tree and it's even money. Do it with one that only weighs 2,900 pounds and guess who loses? That's right. The children. Shame on these "greens."

If a Boston Globe columnist isn't good enough credentials for you, there's more. How about the Brookings Institute? Brookings is to American liberalism what Wisconsin is to cheese. What Bird is to bop. What Planet X is to Dan Rather (What's the frequency, Chandra?). It is home base. The mother ship. Where the ideas come from.

Robert Crandall, a senior fellow back at the liberal mother ship, studied the MPG regulations and the automobile accident statistics and concluded that the fuel economy standards forced on us and our children by the "greens" resulted in 2,000-4,000 additional traffic fatalities during the 10 year life cycle of the 1989 model cars. That's just one model year and there have been a dozen more since with another on the way. Let's see, fourteen model years at an average of say 3,000 unnecessary deaths per year. That's 42,000 extra dead people. How many were children, Mr. and Ms. Green?

There's more, no less an authority than the group Public Citizen points out another aspect of the problem. In case you do not know Public Citizen was founded by Ralph Nader. (Please pause while we bow our heads in a moment of reverence.OK, back to work). The group Public Citizen, founded by Ralph Nader, is not to be confused with the group Public Enemy, which was founded by Chuck D and actually turned a profit for a time but was just as hard to dance to. In reviewing the well publicized case of Ford, Firestone and the separating tire treads, Public Citizen pointed an unbiased, public spirited consumer advocate finger at Ford. As we already know, Ford does not like white faces. Could it be because they favor the green ones? Hmmm?

So it would appear. Ford made their vehicle lighter in order to satisfy the green special interests by skimping on, of all things, the tires. Public Citizen, which was founded by (cue the organ) Ralph Nader in case you forgot, describes Ford's actions thus: "To improve.fuel efficiency.the tire was made lighter, less durable." In other words, to further their own green, special interest agenda (think of it as Small Cars for Small Brains) they lightened the vehicle by using too flimsy tires and thereby made it a deathtrap for children everywhere. J'Accuse, Mr. Nasser! J'Accuse, Mr. and Ms. Green!

There are other complicit parties in this assault on the children. Most culpable are the "regulation addicts" like congressmen, cabinet members and our true rulers, bureaucrats. We all know that addictions are sicknesses, and far be it from me to suggest holding people accountable for their actions. This is America, after all. But at the very least they need treatment and we will make sure they get it. (The Beat Up Ford Clinic? Nah.) We can get Robert Downey Jr. to set up a 12-step program to teach them to let go and accept the unregulated life.

Knowing all of this about the "greens" and what hey have visited on the children, how can we not act? If we do nothing now how can we ever again claim to feel someone else's pain with a straight face? But what to do? I'll tell you what. Buy a big ol' honking great car for you and your family. Especially for the children. The bigger the better. Get yourself one of those RAM tough, more horsepower than you can count, oversized, highway cruising SUV's. It will require sacrifice, of course. Like parking spaces, for instance. There will be fewer because you'll take up more than one. And you might have to start paying attention to the overhead clearance signs in parking garages and McDonald's drive thru's but this is the moral equivalent of moral equivalency and man's gotta do what a man's gotta do.

The mean spirited "greens" will try to make us feel inferior and guilty, of course. They're big on feeling superior and dealing guilt. They'll point up at us from their death trap go-carts. But we can just roll on by, or over, them because we understand their agenda. Their deadly special interests don't impress us anymore. They'll just have to find some other way of killing off those thousands of people, including the children, this year.

Somehow I think they'll come up with something. Something green.

    Ed Cobb [send him mail] is a printer in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley. He is a northerner by birth, a southerner by choice, and a Catholic by the grace of God.

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