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The Really Inconvenient Truths: Seven Environmental Catastrophes Liberals Don't Want You to Know About--Because They Helped Cause Them Hardcover – April 22, 2008

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Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

Al Gore is bad for the planet...

Talk about really inconvenient truths--that's one of the many you'll find in Iain Murray's rollicking exposé of environmental blowhards who waste more energy, endanger more species, and actually kill more people (yes, that's right) than the environmental villains they finger. Did you know that estrogen from birth control and "morning after" pills is causing male fish across America to develop female sex organs? Funny how "pro-choice" and "environmentalist" liberals never talk about that. Or how about this: the Live Earth concert to "save the planet" released more CO2 into the atmosphere than a fleet of 2,000 Humvees emit in a year? We hear a lot about AIDS in Africa, but the number one killer of children in much of Africa is malaria--and guess who was responsible for banning the pesticide that used to have malaria under control? Iain Murray, a sprightly conservative environmental analyst with a long record of skewering liberal hypocrisy, has dug up seven of the all-time great environmental catastrophes caused by the Left and exposed them in The Really Inconvenient Truths. Murray lays bare:

* How ethanol, the liberals' favorite fuel, is destroying the world's rainforests--and could cause global food shortages
* How Al Gore's hero Rachel Carson cost the lives of millions of Africans through her efforts to ban DDT
* How the environmentalists have covered up the polluting effects of contraceptive and chemical abortion drugs
* How the Endangered Species Act actually endangers species
* How Gore's vision of greater state control over the economy has already produced some of the greatest environmental disasters in history

All of us want a planet with clean air and clean water, vibrant forests, healthy animal populations, and glorious open space. But liberal environmentalists aren't the ones to deliver it. In fact, they've made the planet worse, while old-fashioned property rights, unpopular hunters, and the innovative engine of capitalism have made it better. The facts are all here, in a book that Al Gore would rather burn than read.

From the Back Cover

"Ever wonder about the story of the Cuyahoga River catching fire in Cleveland? Or the accuracy of Rachel Carson's dire warnings about DDT? Or the systematic attempt to discredit prominent scientists who question that there is a significant man-made impact on global temperatures? If you care about the environment, Iain Murray's book is a valuable resource. Murray's book questions politically correct myths that endanger both the environment and public safety."
--JOHN R. LOTT, economist and author of Freedomnomics: Why the Free Market Works and Other Half-Baked Theories Don't

"With detailed analysis and insight borne of his unique experience, Iain Murray reveals the consequences for which the `environmentalist' establishment--and their political and media enablers--have yet to be held accountable, too busy rushing off to once again wreak destruction in the name of another `greatest threat:' global warming. Murray's account almost makes one yearn for an international criminal court. Almost."
--CHRISTOPHER C. HORNER, bestselling author of The Politically Incorrect GuideTM to Global Warming and Environmentalism

"Iain Murray, again and again, demonstrates that the motivating passion for environmentalism is too often a desire for political control first and environmental improvement second. He has the keenest of eyes for spotting where science ends and utopianism takes its place--and rationally explaining why this is folly. Iain Murray understands and recounts in vivid detail that the control environmentalists seek is not only fool's gold, but is actually the fastest route to a less healthy environment and a poorer society. The only reliable guarantee for sustained environmental health is precisely the freedom and property rights so many environmentalists see as the cause of all our problems."
--JONAH GOLDBERG, bestselling author and editor-at-large, National Review Online


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 354 pages
  • Publisher: Regnery Publishing (April 22, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596980540
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596980549
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,046,609 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

167 of 188 people found the following review helpful By D. W. MacKenzie on May 15, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Iain Murray has done a real service with The Really Inconvenient Truths. Perhaps a majority of us are now environmentalists. Yet the track record of environmentalist legislation and regulation is unenviable. There are problems with the incentives created by many bills.

The ban on DDT might have saved the live save the lives of a few birds, but it has cost deaths of Africans from malaria. Ethanol increases food prices. The endangered species act creates perverse incentives. There are what we might term as unintended consequences, as far as most environmentalists are concerned. It is important to note, however, that there does exist a lunatic fringe of the environmentalist movement, who will interpret part of the results discussed in this book as a job well done.

In some respects The Really Inconvenient Truths is unremarkable. Much of its analysis derives from common sense economics. Some of its examples are already known. This in not the first time someone has noted a connection between malaria and the DDT ban. However, The Really Inconvenient Truths is quite remarkable in the current political environment. This is a very politically incorrect book. As Murray himself notes, there is certain populist fervor among environmentalists. Murray deserves credit for taking on such a emotionally and politically charged issue.

Part of the problem of environmentalism is the conceit of social democrats and socialists who think that the world is made better through conscious planning. Yet most environmentalists are just normal well intentioned people, whose faith in government solutions has caused them to implement the wrong solutions. Why is it that the environmentalist movement retains its momentum despite the severe unintended consequences of its policies?
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57 of 63 people found the following review helpful By DWD's Reviews VINE VOICE on August 9, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I once proudly called myself an environmentalist. Now I am a conservationist and a steward.

I believe some wild spaces should be saved. I recycle (A lot!). I coordinate my school's paper recycling program. I own several of those little flourescent bulbs and I use them every day. I don't spray chemicals all over my yard. I don't dump motor oil down the drain. I pick up garbage when I walk the dog. I go camping. I go to the Earth Day celebration in downtown Indianapolis because it's a great place to get information on clean-up events and they give away free trees! I also love it when they assume that I must be an ultra-liberal just to be there!

Now that I've said all of this, let me say that I am not an environmentalist. I used to be. Way back when, when I first started teaching, I showed movies to my kids in world geography that said the world as we know it is going to end by the year 2000. Mass flooding, all of the fish dead, mass starvation, etc. They were older versions of the "Inconvenient Truth" that featured Hollywood stars and quoted heavily from Gore's "Earth in the Balance".

I am now embarrassed by all of that.

Why? Because I fell for the hype and did not do simple things like check sources and see if what I was being told was backed up by other testimony. Sometimes, simple facts get in the way (like Ehrlich's "Population Bomb" book predictions never quite came true, like those predictions in the videos I showed to my class) and make it hard to follow that line of reasoning any longer.

So, what are the 7 environmental catastrophes:

1. DDT & Malaria in Africa
2. Ethanol as fuel
3. The "Pill" and its effect on fish downstream from water treatment plants.
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70 of 82 people found the following review helpful By S. Peek VINE VOICE on June 13, 2008
Format: Hardcover
As anyone who pays any attention to current events knows, energy and food prices are spiralling upward. Many do not know the reasons for that.

In this scholarly review of the subject, Iain Murray explores those issues and several others. He not only provides the reasons for many of our current predicaments, he also supplies solutions.

As the subtitle states, this book deals with 'seven environmental catastrophes that liberals don't want you to know about - because they helped cause them.' Although many environmentalists likely have good motives, the unintended consequences of the policies that they push have been and continue to be disastrous for our planet and the human race.

One example is the ban on the 'dreaded DDT'. Mr. Murray does a great job of showing how that ban has resulted in the deaths of a countless number of children in Africa due to malaria.

Another is ethanol. Murray makes the case that the ethanol mandates enacted by the U.S. Congress have led to much higher food prices and shortages. Additionally, it is ineffective in battling the 'problem'. Ethanol may produce 1/3 less greenhouse gas than gasoline, but it uses more gasoline to produce it than it replaces.

The Yellowstone Fire of 1988 is another great environmental tragedy brought about by the policies of so-called environmentalists. The war against logging and the anti controlled burn crusades created a powder keg. The fuel buildup was so huge that a massive fire was inevitable.

In the case of The Endangered Species Act, Mr. Murray shows how it has created disincentives to protect some of the species it claims to champion while at the same time wreaking havoc on our economy.
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