Far from weakening the Environmental Protection Agency, Donald Trump needs to beef it up. Or so says a guy in the New York Times by the name of William D. Ruckelshaus.
In a March 7 op-ed in the Times, Ruckelshaus writes:
A strong and credible regulatory regime is essential to the smooth functioning of our economy.
Interesting use of the word “credible” there from the worthless bureaucrat who, perhaps more than anyone, embodies what is so very wrong with the EPA and why it so urgently needs to be reformed.
Ruckelshaus, let it never be forgotten, was the EPA administrator responsible for probably the blackest moment in the institution’s history: the man who banned DDT in the U.S. with consequences which resulted in millions of unnecessary deaths around the world from malaria.
Sure Ruckelshaus didn’t deliberately murder all those people. But the fact remains that DDT was — still is — one of the most effective killers of the malarial mosquito; and that by banning it in the U.S., Ruckelshaus helped create a knock-on regulatory effect which deprived the world of one its best defences against one of its biggest health problems.
I told the story a few months back, but it’s worth repeating — and should be repeated every time this dreadful man pops up again and presumes to assume the mantle of an authority he simply hasn’t earned. As I noted then:
A lawyer, by training, not a scientist, Ruckelshaus was the man responsible for instituting the America-wide ban on DDT. He did this on no scientific basis whatsoever. In fact, Judge Edmund Sweeney had presided over a seven-month EPA hearing, examining more than 9,000 pages of expert testimony, and concluded:
“DDT is not a carcinogenic hazard to man…DDT is not a mutagenic or teratogenic hazard to man…The use of DDT under the regulations involved here do not have a deleterious effect on freshwater fish, estuarine organisms, wild birds or other wildlife.”
Ruckelshaus, who had not attended the hearings or read the report, overruled him. Which probably made not much difference in the United States. But the knock-on effects of the near worldwide ban that followed meant that DDT could no longer be used to control mosquito populations, which in turn led to an explosion in malaria, causing the death of millions.
Subsequently Ruckelshaus has distinguished himself by endorsing Barack Obama for U.S. president in 2008; and most recently, by heading the Washington Blue Ribbon Panel on Ocean Acidification. [Ocean Acidification, of course, being yet another scientifically dubious scare story designed mainly to prop up the lucrative global anti-carbon-dioxide industry]
I don’t doubt — as Ruckelshaus claims in his New York Times article — that the public, whatever their politics, are keen to have clean water and clean air. But the way he puts it smacks of the dishonest rhetoric of the D.C. Establishment using emotive cheap tricks to try to protect their power base and their revenue stream. Ruckelshaus writes:
Voters may have supported Donald J. Trump believing his campaign rhetoric about the E.P.A. But they don’t want their kids choking on polluted air or drinking tainted water any more than Hillary Clinton voters, and as soon as the agency stops doing its job, they’re going to be up in arm.
Yadda yadda, creep. No more should we take lectures from you on childcare than we would have done from King Herod.
No one’s suggesting that the EPA should pull back on its good regulations. It’s just the bad regulations that we’re worried about. And no one knows more about bad regulations than you do, Mr. Ruckelshaus. Truly, with your scientifically illiterate, politically opportunist and outrageously damaging actions on DDT, you set the bar.