The USSR killed 338,000 whales. Its relentless illegal whaling fleets drove the blue whale into extinction in the North Pacific and caused population crashes in a number of other species.
Some have labeled it the worst environmental crime of the century, but it was really just a slow day for the USSR whose other contributions to the environment included destroying one of the four largest lakes in the world (“One of the worst environmental disasters of the world”: UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon) and multiple nuclear disasters culminating in Chernobyl (the world’s worst nuclear disaster).
The USSR was determined to show that communism could defeat capitalism and while it couldn’t beat the United States in industrial production, it took home the gold medal for environmental disasters. By the end, 75 percent of its surface water was polluted and its air was among the dirtiest in the world.
The only ones to give the old USSR a run for its money when it came to environmental disasters were their fellow Communists across the border in the People’s Republic of China.
But the only thing that the left does better than wreck economies and the environment is rewrite history. Its three-legged roaches crawl out from underneath the rubble and pretend that nothing ever happened. The left claims historical inevitability while refusing to learn anything from history.
Like mutated cockroaches in Chernobyl, its red-shirted acolytes converged in the People’s Climate March chanting that the only solution for the environment was to replace capitalism with Socialism.
The Party for Socialism and Liberation carried a banner proclaiming that “Climate Change is the Symptom, Capitalism is the Disease, Socialism is the Cure.” The PSI is a Marxist splinter group from the even more insane Workers World Party. It thinks that the collapse of the USSR was the real disaster.
The Communist Party of the United States, whose logo still includes a sickle and gear, announced that it was now concentrating on nature. But it will take a lot of greenwashing to turn those reds green.
The International Socialist Organization, another Marxist group, came promoting its “Eco-socialism” while bearing posters of a globe dripping with oil. “Capitalism is Killing the Planet; Fight for Socialism.”
But when it came to killing the planet by drilling for oil, the Socialists were the champs. Other countries just drilled for oil. The USSR tried to drill for oil using nuclear bombs. It also tried to use nuclear bombs to search for gas and coal making it the only country in the world whose coal was also radioactive.
When it came to drilling for oil, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was the drunken fisherman trying to catch a trout with dynamite. This was, not coincidentally, a favorite hobby of its Party bosses.
But the USSR wasn’t completely neglectful of the environment. It also tried to use nuclear bombs to create holes for storing toxic waste. There’s no doubt that if the USSR could have thought of a way to improve the environment by exploding a bunch of nuclear bombs, it would have done it.
The Workers World Party showed up handing out literature calling for a ban on fracking. The WWP won’t be carrying that same literature to its friends in the Chinese government which leads the world in coal mining and oil pipeline disasters and which has already managed to kill people using fracking.
The People’s Republic even figured out how to kill people using solar panels. Solar panel pollution production has already killed large numbers of fish and local villagers are suffering from kidney and liver damage. It takes a Socialist and a five-year-plan to figure out how to kill people with solar panels.
Leftists in New York marched under the hashtag #FloodWallStreet claiming that only stopping capitalism would end the climate crisis. There’s no doubt that Socialists are really good at flooding things.
Soviet and Chinese dams failed more often than they worked. When the dams weren’t failing, then their Socialist planners were building pointless canals that didn’t work. The Stalin White Sea Canal killed 100,000 workers and can only accommodate small boats. Wall Street could have made it work without piling up a mountain of corpses. China’s Banqiao Dam however took home the prize for killing the most people in any dam failure in history; 171,000. But they did have the help of their fellow Soviet Socialists.
China’s current Three Gorges Dam has displaced over a million people and flooded 13 cities, 140 towns and 1,350 villages. There’s no way the capitalists of Wall Street could compete with that flooding.
The Revolutionary Communist Party wore stickers reading, “Capitalism is Destroying the Planet… We Need Revolution.” As Maoists however they ought to know that if anyone is going to destroy the planet, it will be them. Mao’s industrial and agricultural experiments very nearly destroyed China, killing tens of millions of people with a famine caused by his attempts at environmental engineering.
Today China isn’t just wrecking its own environment, but is also colonizing Africa with disastrous industrial projects. Chad recently handed China a $1.2 billion bill for illegal dumping of crude oil. Gabon has accused China of polluting its country. If anyone is going to destroy the world, the smart money is still on China which has the capacity and the determined rigidity to make it happen.
All these Socialist environmental disasters happened because of central planning. The key to Socialism is also a formula for endless human and environmental disasters. The USSR and Communist China saw human resources and natural resources as fuel for their vast centrally planned economies. It was capitalism without responsibility, human rights or independent points of views. And the left is determined to recreate these same environmental disasters in the name of the environment.
Socialist governments in the United States and California have already created a man-made drought. Warmunism in the UK led to massive flooding there this year. Environmental disasters created in the name of the environment are a reality as the same inflexible collectivist bureaucracies that wrecked the environment for industrial Socialism are wrecking it all over again for eco-Socialism.
The combination of rigid ideology, bureaucratic guidelines and experts with no real life experience led to droughts and floods in the USSR and the PRC. Now the same combination of big plans, clueless experts and mindless slogans are creating droughts and floods in the US and the EU.
The ideologues of the USSR and the PRC believed that nothing could go wrong if they drew their inspiration from Lenin, Stalin and Mao. The new ideologues are convinced that they have to be right because they are “on the side of the environment”; as if the air, the sky and the sea have a “side”.
Environmental disasters aren’t caused by capitalists or communists. They are caused by people who don’t think about the consequences of their actions.
The left has long since proven that it is incapable of thinking about consequences in any terms other than those of its ideology. A factory owner can recognize a toxic waste spill. A Socialist is incapable of recognizing that his ideology’s plan caused a spill. He will deny that it exists, denounce the witnesses, accuse critics of waging war on his ideology and then spend the next twenty years making it worse.
The planet doesn’t need saving from capitalists. It needs saving from Socialists.
Don't miss Shillman Journalism Fellow Daniel Greenfield on The Glazov Gang discussing "ISIS Rising":
Freedom Center pamphlets now available on Kindle: Click here.