Here's a question that High School science teachers might want to include in their next pop quiz: Which of the following megalomaniacs caused the greatest amount of death and destruction in the 20th Century?
A- Josef Stalin
B- Adolf Hitler
C- Pol Pot
D- Rachel Carson
Here's a hint. The lies and distortions of the criminal in question resulted in more death, disease, poverty and misery than the other three combined.
The correct answer is critical to the understanding of how environmental science has evolved in the last forty years. With all the media jabbering about Globalism in 2006 one very dramatic development seems to have been overlooked. Last Summer The World Health Organization (WHO) said "Never Mind" and lifted its thirty year ban on the pesticide DDT. I could say better late than never, but I've never been accused of being overly charitable. No single act has done more to keep half the world's population imprisoned in the grip of poverty than the DDT ban. No class of people have done more to extend the misery of those living in the developing world than American and Western European environmental elitists.
Rachel Carson, the Joan of Arc of environmentalism, along with her enthusiastic accomplices at CBS News, willfully misrepresented and distorted the facts in her 1962 bestseller and subsequent CBS documentary, The Silent Spring. In doing so, she provided the instruction manual for all the environmental zealots that followed: Begin with a premise (pesticides are evil) then distort or fabricate the data to support it. The Aububon Society, Greenpeace, Earth First and their cheerleaders have all followed the strategy to perfection, even to the point of stifling dissenting voices, as demonstrated by Senators Rockefeller and Snowe just last week.
For those of us living in the comfort and security of the Industrialized World the results have been negligible. For the forgotten and invisible hundreds of millions who live beyond our view, the consequences have not been so benign. Malaria, a preventable parasitic condition which had long been in decline, is now the leading cause of disease and premature death. Worse, its social effects have been exponential, placing a tight lid on economic development so that even those not afflicted are condemned to a continuing cycle of grinding poverty. Governments have been held hostage to WHO extortion. Thailand defied the DDT ban throughout the 1980s and early 1990s and malaria there virtually disappeared. Finally, they could could no longer resist as the flow of United Nations aid dried up and the incidence of malaria slowly but surely rose again.
So now, the WHO has taken their "Mulligan" and admitted that maybe they were wrong about DDT. Nice try guys. Tell the families of the dead that you're sorry. Tell the mothers who wake up every morning wondering if this is the day that they will have to decide which of their children survive until sunset that you tried your best. More importantly, convince the world that those who have been so wrong about so much for so long should now be trusted, again. How many more will die needlessly in the 21st Century if we blindly follow today's environmental elitists?