Did you hear about that big toxic waste spill in Colorado? If you did, you’ve probably forgotten the details.
Three million gallons of sludge turned the Animas River a sickening shade of orange. Ordinarily, it would have been a national story for days, if not weeks, while the EPA chastised the company responsible. Big fines and jail time would be discussed. (And suppose the CEO once had his picture taken with the Koch brothers?)
But in this case, the culprit was … the EPA.
No anchormen parachuting in. No scolds on cable news shows. No headlines. No attention at all, aside from a little on Fox News.
Move along, folks. Nothing to see here. (And if your town draws its drinking water from that river, you’ll shut up if you know what’s good for you.)
EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy flew in downstream and declared that the river was “restoring itself.”
Who knew a river could restore itself without thousands of new pages of EPA regulations and millions of dollars of special appropriations? Environmentalists have been strangely silent about this one.
A document dumped Friday night proved the EPA knew there could be a “blowout” at the abandoned mine. The new story will get no traction, because the fix is in.
Writes John Hinderaker at the Powerline Blog: “The point can’t be emphasized enough: government is inherently less competent, less accountable and less transparent than private business. In popular culture, environmental disasters are always the fault of greedy profiteers in industry. But in reality, the most polluted places on the planet have always been those where government reigned supreme, like Eastern Europe, the Soviet Union and China.”
The EPA’s overreach should be addressed by Congress, but who wants to govern when resources are needed for campaign fundraising? On this the parties agree: It’s easier to let bureaucrats govern so as to be able to praise or blame them, whatever is politically expedient.