For decades the environmental movement has drafted the world’s cutest and cuddliest mega fauna as symbols for their cause. From the grizzly to the panda, bears have always been the top choice for environmental iconography. In recent years environmental activists have enlisted the polar bear in their effort to take control of the U.S. economy on the grounds that global warming is destroying the bear’s arctic habitat. Now that the Interior Department has listed the polar bear as “endangered” pursuant to the Environmental Species Act (ESA), however, libertarians who are serious about their intentions to bring the federal government to a screeching halt ought to consider adopting the bear.
Normally libertarians are not a litigious bunch, but if they are willing to adopt some new tactics, Section 7 of the ESA could provide them the tool they need to end federal government interference in the economy forever. See the polar bear will be the first animal ever listed as endangered on a global warming theory. Normally, species are listed due to harms to their habitat from local factors like logging, farming, or hospital building. So when the Army wants to build a firing range to train troops to protect our country, environmentalists can sue to stop the activity since it will harm local endangered bird populations.
But global warming is just that: global. Virtually every federal government action anywhere in the country can be connected to increased greenhouse gas emissions, which after all, are the cause of the destruction of the polar bear’s habitat according to the Interior Department. So you wanna stop the Agriculture Department from sending subsidy checks to millionaire farmers? Claim the increased emissions from transporting the crops to market will harm the polar bears and sue to stop them. Wanna stop a new high way from being funded? Just point out the new traffic will increase emissions and ‘presto’ … no more high way. Wanna end increases in Medicare spending? All you need to do is show that increased health care spending prolongs peoples lives who inevitably emit more carbon. The possibilities are endless…..