Listing of lizard may shut down Texas oil
By: Greg Halvorson
You canâ€™t make this up.Â First, a Spotted Owl destroyed the timber industry of the Pacific Northwest, then a minnow turned the most productive agricultural land in the world into a dustbowl, and now, as energy prices spike and the economy sputters, theyâ€™re going after Texas with a scurrilous reptile.
Specifically, the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard.Â Thatâ€™s the latest more-important-than-people critter being used to lock-up resources in the name of planet Earth.Â The drilling moratorium didnâ€™t cause enough pain, so onto the Endangered Species Act – known at the Sierra Club as â€œOlâ€™ Reliableâ€ – to make certain Texas has lizard-filled poverty.
Lizard or livelihood?Â Thatâ€™s whatâ€™s at stake.Â And the pro-poverty Earth Firsters stratifying government canâ€™t have both.Â If it determines that the lizard is indeed endangered, the Fish and Wildlife Service will shut down the most productive oil counties in Texas, ban roads, and slow farm activity, as it â€œstudies the ecosystemâ€ for up to five years.
This should please Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu, who in 2008 said, â€œWe must increase gas taxes to force people to turn to alternative energy.Â Somehow, we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to levels in Europe.â€
Thatâ€™s the goalâ€”Europe.Â Low growth.Â High taxes.Â As our economy shrivels and land is restricted, as we ignore wealth beneath our feet and slide toward uncertainty, they slither along, creating dependencyâ€¦.Â Sauve le lezard!
They should say it in French.