It’s encouraging and disheartening all at the same time. And seldom has the evil of money been so obvious. Last night I attended an environmental panel discussion at a local church. It was encouraging to see so many people out on a rainy, chilly night in Bethlehem, a city famous for its might steel mill. Everyone there knew the problem and agreed that something had to be done. As the speakers gave their presentations it became clear just how corrupt politicians are. Corruption is bipartisan, of course. In the name of “economic growth” we allow the fracking rape of our state despite the known and proven environmental hazards. Despite the fact that Pennsylvania has a green amendment in its state constitution. Money, as Cyndi reminds us, changes everything.
Shortly after even Mitch McConnell admitted climate change is real, at the state level climate deniers are running things. It brought to mind the frightening and omnipresent teachings of my Fundamentalist youth: the sooner we can destroy this planet the sooner we’ll make Jesus come again. Convinced of the absolute certainty of that second coming, there is almost a mandate to ruin, pillage, and plunder natural resources because the Good Book ensures us that, upon a white horse the savior will come in the nick of time. Politicians, elected officials believe this. They also believe in mammon. If you’re gonna go down, you might as well do it in style. Like John Jacob Astor on the Titanic. It’s the way of the aristocrat. Rising seas drown rich and poor alike.
It was a miserable night to be out. The weather has been freakishly off for some time now, and all the science—real science, that is—predicts it’s only going to get worse. How the government became the enemy of the planet that gave it birth would be a fascinating story if only it were fiction. The truth is we’ve elected people that can be bought. And bought easily. Laws are passed that violate the constitution of this commonwealth and meetings are held behind closed doors. Local activists are very active while most of us struggle to keep ourselves employed, heads, as it were, above water. We need to pause now and again to consider what a wonder this planet is. We must learn that the only power money has is that which we freely give it. Rain was pouring down. Brontide was actual thunder as the state legislature drew up chairs for the last supper.