• picture
  • picture
PRI's Environmental News Magazine

Corporate Camouflage

Air Date: Week of April 26, 1996

Jim Hightower comments on names of wildlife organizations that sound too green to be true — and are.

Transcript

CURWOOD: Camouflage is common in the environment, from the tiger's stripes to the chameleon changing its color. All sorts of animals take on disguises to protect themselves or gain an advantage on their prey. As commentator Jim Hightower points out, disguise has also become common among advocacy groups.

HIGHTOWER: There is a town in West Texas named Knot. K-N-O-T. For their official slogan, the locals brag that they are, quote, "the only town in Texas that is Knot, Texas." Well, things get a little slow out there. But now that we know what's Knot and what's not, let's ask what these things are. The National Wetlands Coalition. Friends of Eagle Mountain. Californians for Balanced Wildlife Management. Global Climate Coalition. Wilderness Impact Research Foundation. And one of my favorites, Northwesterners for More Fish. Of course, they're all environmental organizations. Aren't they? Not! Even in nature, not everything is as it appears to be, and in the unnatural world of politics, hardly anything is what it appears to be. The National Wetlands Coalition? It consists of oil drillers, developers, and other corporations that want to drain America's wetlands. Friends of Eagle Mountain is the political front for a mining company that wants to create the world's largest landfill in -- you guessed it -- Eagle Mountain California. Some friends. Californians for Balanced Wlidlife Management want to balance wildlife with death. It's a group that hopes to kill more mountain lions. The Global Climate Coalition is made up of and by corporations that cause global warming. And the Wilderness Impact bunch represents loggers in Nevada who want to have their own unique impact on the wilderness: cutting it down. Oh -- Northwesterners for More Fish? This is a PR front created in Washington, DC, by a half dozen former Republican Party hatchet men. It is funded by utilities, aluminum companies, oil and chemical corporations, the timber giants, and others whose industrial activities actually result in less fish. The front is organized to oppose Federal efforts to protect fish habitats on the Columbia River and other waterways of the Pacific Northwest. It is a testament to the deep popularity of the environmental cause that these polluters feel they have to masquerade as pro-environmental groups. Imitation, they say, is the sincerest form of flattery. But this isn't flattery. It's fakery. I don't think it's going to work for them, though. It's kind of like putting earrings on a hog. They just can't hide the ugliness.

CURWOOD: Former Texas Agricultural Commissioner Jim Hightower is a political commentator based in Austin.

 

 

Living on Earth wants to hear from you!

P.O. Box 990007
Prudential Station
Boston, MA, USA 02199
Telephone: 1-617-587-2660
E-mail: comments@loe.org

Donate to Living on Earth!
Living on Earth is an independent media program and relies entirely on contributions from listeners and institutions supporting public service. Please donate now to preserve an independent environmental voice.

Newsletter
Living on Earth offers a weekly delivery of the show's rundown to your mailbox. Sign up for our newsletter today!

Experimental
We have a new community section. Tell us what you think!

Major funding for Living on Earth is provided by the National Science Foundation.

Committed to healthy food, healthy people, a healthy planet, and healthy business.

Kendeda Fund, furthering the values that contribute to a healthy planet.

The Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment: Committed to protecting and improving the health of the global environment.

Contribute to Living on Earth and receive, as our gift to you, an autographed copy of one of Mark Seth Lender's extraordinary hummingbird photographs. Follow the link to see Mark's current collection of photographs.