Comrade Gaia

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Via reader "J.C.," comes a link to a story so far-fetched even by today's loony standards that I scrolled back up to the top of the page to make sure the date wasn't April 1.

Bolivia is set to pass the world's first laws granting all nature equal rights to humans. The Law of Mother Earth, now agreed by politicians and grassroots social groups, redefines the country's rich mineral deposits as "blessings" and is expected to lead to radical new conservation and social measures to reduce pollution and control industry.

The country, which has been pilloried by the US and Britain in the UN climate talks for demanding steep carbon emission cuts, will establish 11 new rights for nature. They include: the right to life and to exist; the right to continue vital cycles and processes free from human alteration; the right to pure water and clean air; the right to balance; the right not to be polluted; and the right to not have cellular structure modified or genetically altered.

Controversially, it will also enshrine the right of nature "to not be affected by mega-infrastructure and development projects that affect the balance of ecosystems and the local inhabitant communities". [links removed]
So much for the joke. Here's the punchline:
But the abstract new laws are not expected to stop industry in its tracks. While it is not clear yet what actual protection the new rights will give in court to bugs, insects and ecosystems, the government is expected to establish a ministry of mother earth and to appoint an ombudsman. It is also committed to giving communities new legal powers to monitor and control polluting industries. [emphasis added]
The Ayn Rand villain Ellsworth Toohey once said, "Don't bother to examine a folly -- ask yourself only what it accomplishes." In this case, we have a law whose proponents claim to want to protect nature -- while apparently oblivious both to the proper purpose of government and to the fact that man (and his mode of survival) is a part of nature. And yet they claim that they don't mean for it to cause the very problem even a left-wing news outlet implicitly admits it could.

Does Bolivia want to drive man to extinction, or enslave him by laws that are impossible for him to obey?

-- CAV

----- In Other News -----

Closely related to yesterday's post: Jim Woods comments on a news story about a teacher who brought a weapon to work and "joked" about killing students. Her job doesn't seem to be in any danger. When I was in high school back in the 1980's, a classmate of mine did something very similar, and he was expelled within the day.

Wanting to "think on paper" the other day and in need of a timer, I found this online alarm clock quite handy.

No comment needed: "Job Center Blasted for Giving Capes to Unemployed." Well, okay, this needs at least one comment. The headline should have started with the word "Government." The kind of mentality that would come up with something like this wouldn't last long enough in a free market to garner attention from the news media.

I frequently link to Michael Hurd's columns in my weekend posts, but he has a really good blog, too, that I re-discovered recently. There's no RSS feed, as far as I can tell, so you'll have to go to the site for your Daily Dose of Reason. [Update: A commenter provided a link to the RSS feed today.


: Added link to RSS Feed in last blurb (HT: Ben Percent)


Unknown said...

That story is absolutely frightening. With that type of mentality, I think its safe to say that Bolivia will not be an economic power anytime in the next 500 years.

Gus Van Horn said...

Sadder still, the law, as a declaration that this government will actively violate individual rights, is an open invitation for a land and resource grab which will go unanswered since every other country on earth basically agrees with the premise behind it.

Imagine how much more profitable business in that place could be under objective law.

Unknown said...

Mr. Hurd, does have an RSS feed, it's just quite hidden. Below each post it's in a gray box at the bottom, but the feed url isn't an active link; you have to copy and paste it. Here it is:

Gus Van Horn said...

Thank you, Ben.

I follow most blogs through feeds under Netvibes, which usually can locate feeds automatically, given a URL.

Neither I nor that automatic function had any luck, so I always had to go out of my way to follow DDoR.