Apr 7, 2010

Ronnie Reagan as an Environmentalist?

The following article just shows how we are all forced to read multiple sources on any given news story these days. We all know Fox and MSNBC are both horribly slanted in opposite directions. We also know CSPAN is pretty honest since it only shows what happens. But here is a report that is more intriguing since it speaks of a champion of the right being used as a champion of the left.

We frankly wish more reporting was like CSPAN. Just tell us what happens and let us decide. But Fox changed that forever so now we must all work harder to find the truth.

Ex-president's words used by Republicans in call for action on climate change "What is a conservative after all but one who conserves?" -- President Ronald Reagan, 1984

Supporters of clion are using a sur mate change legislation are using a surprising figure to promote their cause: Ronald Reagan.

Radio ads asking "What would Reagan do?" are airing on the talk shows of conservatives Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck in New Hampshire and are planned in other states in the drive to get Congress to act on global warming legislation.

The ads, which include clips from Reagan speeches, are the work of Republicans for Environmental Protection.

While it may seem odd to find Reagan -who frequently angered environmentalists -in a campaign to promote environmental regulation, the group said the ads are designed to show that concern about climate change is "consistent with true conservative values."

"What is a conservative after all but one who conserves, one who is committed to protecting and holding close the things by which we live?" Reagan is quoted in one ad as saying, drawing from a 1984 speech to the National Geographic Society .

Environmentalists thought the ads were an April Fools' joke.

"They must believe, as author Gore Vidal put it, that we live in the United States of Amnesia," said Frank O'Donnell of Clean Air Watch.

Critics of climate change legislation were taken aback too.

"I can say with no hesitation that Ronald Reagan, were he alive today , would not believe that global warming was a crisis and would not support energy-rationing legislation," said Myron Ebell of the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

One of the ads cites Reagan's support of an international treaty to phase out ozone-depleting chemicals.

"President Reagan decided to protect our atmosphere from a problem that, at the time, was not fully understood by scientists," David Jenkins of Republicans for Environmental Protection wrote on climateconservative.org. "He discounted the arguments of those who claimed that the problem was not real or that the economic cost would be too great."

John Heubusch, executive director of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation, said that while it is interesting to speculate on what Reagan would do, "that's all it would be -speculation."

by rsimon@tribune.com

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