Editor, The Times:
Looking back at my some 72 years of time on this earth I get this Don Quixote feeling.
It does feel like all or most of the causes I’ve espoused have come to nothing. Or worse than that, gone into reverse.
I learned this summer that the nepotism endemic in Fisheries and Oceans, which I and others railed about for years, is still alive and well with a few new wrinkles thrown in.
Global warming! Despite ocean levels rising, the Northwest and Northeast passages being open part of the time, and ferocious storm laying places like the Philippines to waste, there are still those some, well-funded by the energy industry, who deny its existence.
Free trade — as Lewis Lapham, former deputy editor of Harpers, stated, “It’s not free trade but trade managed strictly from a corporate point of view.”
However, as I write this, politicians, including Stephen Harper, are rushing about the globe signing secretive free trade deals with anyone and everyone. The Ukrainians are rioting because their president won’t sign a free trade deal with the E.U. which, according to the Guardian, is a lousy deal.
Wars fought! Wars lost!
However I’m about to pick up my bent lance and rusted armour, remount Rocinate and ride off to tilt at yet another windmill.
This time it’s fracking, possibly the worst threat along with deep water drilling (remember Gulf Horizon – you probably don’t) to the health of this planet.
This process, which involves horizontal drilling, then injecting the bowels of the earth with utterly dreadful chemicals to extract the riches trapped in shale rock. Wherever it’s been practiced fracking has left a legacy of destroyed groundwater, vented poison gas, and unexplained seismic tremors.
I fully expect to be swept out of the saddle and left battered and bleeding on the ground as usual.
However when one has been tilting at windmills all his life — why stop now?