Saturday, April 22, 2006

Earth Day At Sac State University

I should have taken my camera.

First off, I love how much capitalism was occurring there. Lots of people there making an honest buck, even if sometimes they were selling some off-the-wall stuff.

There were some conservation organizations there (Save Our Creeks, American River Conservancy) and some municipal organizations (Sacramento's Urban Forest Services Department, for example). Alternative fuel vehicles, including cars that operate on hydrogen fuel cells (President Bush was at that facility in West Sacramento today), were displayed.

And then there were the nutjobs. It was for them that I wore my Commies Aren't Cool (with a red slash through a small picture of Che Guevara) shirt. I admit it--part of the reason I go is to watch the freaks.

The Democrats had a table signing up voters. I doubt the organizers even wanted the Republicans to have a table there. The Greens were there, as was the Peace and Freedom Party. Any guesses what/who all three of those left-of-center parties were against? I even had a guy try to convince me that anarchy was the only way to go, and we'd know how good no government at all could be if only it had ever been tried before. Interesting.

Why do these environmental events always attract the wackos? Why don't you ever see these wackos at a job fair, at a business expo, at a trade show? I mean, I'm all about protecting the environment and being a good steward of the planet, but I think those people have been inhaling a bit too much nature, if you get what I mean. They don't seem to recognize that it's wealth and prosperity that allow us to preserve our environment, and if you don't believe that you should go to a 3rd world country some time. It's the very capitalism they decry that makes it possible to create "cleaner" fuels and factories, to restore damage previously done, to preserve areas like wetlands and forests.

I went to a booth for a solar cell installer. As I've written on this blog many times, I'm a big supporter of solar power and truly don't understand why it doesn't take off in a place like California, or in Phoenix, or even Denver (with its 300+ days of sun a year and bad pollution in the winter). The first thing one of the employees manning the booth said to me? "I don't like your shirt."

Update: I like this article, which pithily (is that a word?) discusses Earth Day, the environment, and environmentalists.


Robert said...

The environmentalist types would do much better to learn the lesson that you catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar. They'd be much more effective in advancing their ideas if they'd focus on environmentalism rather than on being anti-Bush. There are plenty of conservatives -- sounds like both you and me included -- who believe strongly in protecting the environment; we just believe in doing so through different means than liberals. But any sane organization should realize that the only way to really progress your agenda is to seek common ground among a large number of people; instead, the enviro types use environmentalism as a prop to bash all who don't profess leftism. I guess that tells you something about the sanity of such organizations.

It'd be nice to see a high-profile group be both pro-environment and conservative at the same time too; conservatives have some work to do on that front.

Anecdote: In grad school, I was a member of both the Sierra Club and the Republican Party. The mailing lists I ended up on were amusing. once, on the same day, I got mail from the ACLU teling me how evil the Christian Coalition was, and mail from the Christian Coalition telling me how evil the ACLU was.

Anonymous said...

Please, sir - where can I get a "Commies Aren't Cool" shirt? I must have one!

Darren said...

Robert, I agree that there's no inconsistency at all in being both politically conservative and a good steward of the environment.

As for where to get the tshirt, go to:

I also own these:

Cameron said...

Ever been to a gun expo? I'd call that "full of wackos" as well, and I'm sure that they don't exactly cater to all sides of the political spectrum.
Or how about the entire southern United States, for that matter?

Darren said...


Yes, I've been go a gun show. I didn't see anyone signing up Republican voters there.

EllenK said...

What I find funny is going to Central Market to watch all the self-satisfied purchase overpriced goods that are grown by HUGE organic farming monopolies in the midwest and on the west coast. There are all these signs posted about how this store "supports the local farmer", but I bet if a local farmer showed up with say a bushel of peachers to sell, they would call the cops. As for the gun show analogy, yes there are freaks there. But then again, I went to well known liberal John Fogerty's concert last year and had a great time and (SURPRISE!) he didn't feel compelled to spout his personal politics while on stage. So we can co-exist. We just can't co-habit.

Darren said...

Can't co-habit? I guess you didn't read this story in the major Sacramento newspaper :-)

Opposites attract
He's a Republican, she's a Democrat. Or vice versa. They might not agree when it comes to politics, but these couples have found love on the 'other side.'

cassandra said...

Yes, I've been go a gun show. I didn't see anyone signing up Republican voters there.

Well, shame on the Sacto Republican Central Committee, because they're supposed to be at these events registering voters. Par for the course, too lazy.

Darren said...

I don't know about your "par for the course, too lazy" comment, but you're certainly right in your first sentence.