Rachel Carson – Environmentalist Queen of Green Genocide


           RachelCarsonQueenOfGreengenocide

Rachel Carson I wonder how she must feel these days – in the afterlife or limbo or reincarnated or nonexistence or whatever – knowing that her hysterically screaming campaign begun by Silent Spring to stop the use of DDT has succeeded.

Succeeded in murdering more than 50 million people, that is.

Most of them children. Poor, Third World villagers. Oh well, rich eco-celebrities can’t spare all those five minutes for you wretches!

All for the sake of Mother Gaia and her little bald eagle chicks.

Who weren’t actually threatened by the completely harmless, people-can-eat-a-teaspoon-a-day-for-two-years-straight-and-be-completely-unaffected-healthwise substance in the first place.

But it’s the life-hating thought that counts, mommy!

Environmentalists must be so proud. They are. Their heroine’s propaganda material and their own efforts managed to kill more people than Hitler and Stalin combined.

The Green having long ago bested the Red’s murder of innocents high score, they now turn their attention to the biggest achievement of all: eradicating all humans on the planet.

The Global Warming Cult of Reducing Economic Growth and Propagating Poverty can’t hurt their efforts to beat the all-time world record for Causing Human Suffering.

Rachel Carson… I wonder how she must feel these days.

PS. If I gave any vibes of blaming Rachel Carson for actually going around and actively killing Third World babies, I apologize. It is the Green-sane enviro-cultists who are to blame for taking her reasonable intentions on DDT and ramming it through the courts into a full-blown ban and demonization.

UPDATE: Rachel Corrie proven wrong by decades of observation. Via AoSHQ.


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41 Responses to “Rachel Carson – Environmentalist Queen of Green Genocide”

  1. Ed Darrell Says:

    Hysteric claims. 50 million dead due to non-use of DDT? You’re joking, right? Cruel joke.

    DDT was discontinued in every place, with the possible exception of South Africa, when it ceased to be effective, as Rachel Carson warned. DDT has been in constant use since 1946 in several nations where malaria has roared back, including Mexico.

    DDT only kills some mosquitoes, and is not the pesticide of choice against all species that carry malaria. DDT resistance and immunity has rendered it useless in some places. DDT alone cannot fight malaria. Some DDT use, in conjunction with draining of mosquito breeding areas and screens and nets, and coupled with upgrading of health care to treat malaria victims (which stops the spread of the disease), are also necessary. These steps are difficult and costly. Industrial interests, including the Bush administration, have resisted spending the money allocated by legislatures to fight malaria.

    Rachel Carson was right. Had we paid more attention to her book in 1962, we might have avoided the current level of malaria infections. It’s not too late to go back and mount an effective campaign against malaria.

    You’re invited, but you’ll have to lose the hoax information and the attitude. They kill millions.

  2. Scott Thong Says:

    True, 50 million is a moderate-to-high estimate by the counter-Green movement… But the reasons put forward by Rachel Carson for the banning of DDT were untrue.

    She did not care about whether human beings affected by malaria die, or whether DDT use would result in resistant mosquitos that continue to spread malaria. She cared about the majestic wildlife and the little chicks. She cared about the ‘missing’ bird songs.

    As a biologist, I understand full well the adaptation mechanisms for insecticide resistance. If DDT use had been restricted to anti-malaria use only – not spread out everywhere on farms to control pests – it would have retained its effectiveness far longer.

    But even if it was effective for only five measly years, would it not be worthwhile to save what human lives we could?

    If human-cidal aliens attacked the Earth, and we had a single, irreplaceable bomb that could kill 90% of all the invaders, wouldn’t we use it even if we could never use it again?

    If we used it, we would not be able to use it against future alien invasions. But seriously, who would advocate saving it up so that ‘its future effectiveness will not be compromised’?

    If we used the bomb during the invasion, aliens would die and human lives would be saved, and new defences could be prepared. The next time the aliens come, the bomb would not be useable again.

    Whereas if we just held on to it for an indefinite ‘future use’, no aliens would be killed anyway. Whether the bomb has a future use becomes a total moot point. And billions of humans will already have died by then.

    Now reimagine that scenario with mosquito invaders and DDT.

    I appreciate that Rachel Carson had good inetntions at heart. Who doesn’t love Bambi? But her scientifically unproven claims becoming popular hysteria then international law, casting industry and capitalism as the evil empire, and elevation of animals and nature above human lives set the tone for subsequent environmentalism-at-all-costs movements.

    It’s the attitude that births ‘humans should go extinct for the sake of Earth’ activists, who hypocritically refuse to extinct themselves first (or even give up polluting human technology and a luxurious lifestyle).

    http://www.moonbattery.com/archives/2007/09/berkeley_moonba_1.html
    https://scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/03/23/al-gore-high-priest-of-global-warming-hypocrisy/

    I decry the exploitation of nature and short-sighted actions for profit. But I equally decry narrow-minded, dogmatic Green-sane campaigns to throw some of humanity back to the stoen age. (I say some of because the loudest proponents of back-to-basics refuse to stop living like monarchs themsevles.)

    If 50 million killed by DDT ban is an unproven/disproven lie, well then, I demand to be made a hero on the basis of my noble intentions rather than my science – just like Rachel Carson was – and I demand to win the Nobel Peace Prize for my totally-no-positive-effect hysterical claims – just like Al Gore did.

    ONE SINGLE HUMAN LIFE > ANY NUMBER OF BABY SONGBIRDS SINGING

  3. Ed Darrell Says:

    True, 50 million is a moderate-to-high estimate by the counter-Green movement… But the reasons put forward by Rachel Carson for the banning of DDT were untrue.

    Not one single reason she cited for reducing the use of DDT has ever been found wanting. Not one.

    Her work was thoroughly investigated by a special panel appointed by President Kennedy. They found she was conservative, and recommended immediate action by the federal government to cut back on chemical use.

    She did not care about whether human beings affected by malaria die, or whether DDT use would result in resistant mosquitos that continue to spread malaria. She cared about the majestic wildlife and the little chicks. She cared about the ‘missing’ bird songs.

    You might want to read her book. She says exactly the opposite of what you claim here. One of her main points on the death of wildlife is that it foretells the death of humans. Human health was a chief focus of her concern.

    As a biologist, I understand full well the adaptation mechanisms for insecticide resistance. If DDT use had been restricted to anti-malaria use only – not spread out everywhere on farms to control pests – it would have retained its effectiveness far longer.

    So, how does your call for use of DDT differ from Rachel Carson’s?

    I think you’re barking up the wrong tree.

  4. Ed Darrell Says:

    Can you list any scientific claim of Ms. Carson that has been disproven? I’m unaware of any.

  5. Scott Thong Says:

    —You might want to read her book. She says exactly the opposite of what you claim here. One of her main points on the death of wildlife is that it foretells the death of humans. Human health was a chief focus of her concern.—

    I am fully aware of her stated concern for human life, through the effect of biomagnification (example: small amounts of toxic substances in little fish, big fish eats lots of little fish so has lots of toxics, we eat lots of big fish and have huge amounts of toxics in us).

    DDT is yummy! Don’t you know?

    “Human volunteers have ingested as much as 35 milligrams of it a day for nearly two years and suffered no adverse affects.” – http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com/articles/summ02/Carson.html

    Even a few teaspoons is magnitudes more DDT than we would get from eating DDT-exposed sparrows and osprey hatchlings every day for years, no?

    Btw, the quote is by Dr. J. Gordon Edwards, entomologist and park ranger, who himself ate a teaspoon of DDT at the satrt of each class. Proving the horrible toxicity of DDT (sarcasm), he died from a heart attack while hiking up a mountain at age 84.

    Personal testimonies of the man in comments here: http://www.blogofdeath.com/archives/001101.html

    What does DDT do that is so, so much worse than what malaria can do?

    DDT’s not-100%-conclusive effects: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DDT#Toxicity

    (Btw, to test for cancer with any substance, lab animals are exposed to thousands of times the rational everyday dosage for magnitudes longer periods – even artificial sweetener that millions of diabetics enjoy in cup of tea can cause cancer if this is done!)

    Malaria’s proven-time-and-again effects: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malaria#Symptoms

    But for a simple and direct comparison: Use lots of DDT, some people MAYBE PERHAPS POSSIBLY have shortened lifespans due to biomagnification of MAYBE PERHAPS POSSIBLY toxic DDT.

    Don’t use DDT: Many people die almost immediately from mosquito-borne malaria who could have been saved (regardless of whether mosquitos become DDT-resistant a decade late).

    —So, how does your call for use of DDT differ from Rachel Carson’s?

    I think you’re barking up the wrong tree.—

    You’ve caught me there. Here’s what wikipdia quotes Carson saying in her book:

    “No responsible person contends that insect-borne disease should be ignored. The question that has now urgently presented itself is whether it is either wise or responsible to attack the problem by methods that are rapidly making it worse. The world has heard much of the triumphant war against disease through the control of insect vectors of infection, but it has heard little of the other side of the story—the defeats, the short-lived triumphs that now strongly support the alarming view that the insect enemy has been made actually stronger by our efforts. Even worse, we may have destroyed our very means of fighting. … What is the measure of this setback? The list of resistant species now includes practically all of the insect groups of medical importance. … Malaria programmes are threatened by resistance among mosquitoes. … Practical advice should be ‘Spray as little as you possibly can’ rather than ‘Spray to the limit of your capacity’ …, Pressure on the pest population should always be as slight as possible.”

    So evidently, she supported careful use of DDT to control disease vectors, without proliferating resistance in them.

    But that’s not what happened, no. A decade after Carson passed away, enviro-pressuring caused DDT end up banned in the USA and several other ‘enlightened’ nations. Poorer developing countries that still wanted to use it were merely excluded from the bargaining table of the rich ‘progressive’ nations.

    The progenitor case of noted well-meaning environmentalist says one intelligent and rational thing, and Green-sane groups run away with the hysteria to unilaterally impose their way of life?

    I favour reason over emotion, which is why both excluding the use of non-human-killing DDT and burying the rainforest in it are extreme in my book.

    The philosophical difference between me and Carson is that I frankly don’t give a ding about eagle chicks and songbirds, if even one human life can be saved by their total extinction. Call me a specieist, but Darwin’s survival-of-the-fittest evolution and Dawkin’s selfish gene would be proud (more sarcasm there).

    And the practical difference between me and the First World Green-nuts who ran away with her theories and demonized DDT for half a century: I live in a tropical, mosquito-infested developing nation, not you.

    Oops, almost forgot this:

    —Can you list any scientific claim of Ms. Carson that has been disproven? I’m unaware of any.—

    I believe the lack of DDT toxicity to humans counts as ‘any’.

    CONCLUSION:

    If I gave any vibes of blaming Rachel Carson for actually going around and actively killing Third World babies, I apologize. It is the Green-sane enviro-cultists who are to blame for taking her reasonable intentions on DDT and ramming it through the courts into a full-blown ban and demonization.

  6. Ed Darrell Says:

    Btw, the quote is by Dr. J. Gordon Edwards, entomologist and park ranger, who himself ate a teaspoon of DDT at the satrt of each class. Proving the horrible toxicity of DDT (sarcasm), he died from a heart attack while hiking up a mountain at age 84.

    That’s the classic way DDT kills. Edwards had no history of heart disease, and was thought fit for the climb by his physician. I’m not sure it’s a good idea to use Edwards as a model. He died in what looks like exactly the way DDT-poisoned bats and DDT-poisoned raptors do, sudden heart attack when exertion pulls the DDT out of the stored fats.

    Was that your intention?

  7. Ed Darrell Says:

    DDT is yummy! Don’t you know?

    “Human volunteers have ingested as much as 35 milligrams of it a day for nearly two years and suffered no adverse affects.” – http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com/articles/summ02/Carson.html

    Even a few teaspoons is magnitudes more DDT than we would get from eating DDT-exposed sparrows and osprey hatchlings every day for years, no?

    No, DDT by the teaspoon to a human is not more that a hawk would get at the top of the food chain in an estuary. Nor were there any follow up studies on that group to see later damage. Recent studies confirm DDT tends to kill in the next generation in creatures that don’t die immediately of toxicity. Endocrine disruption is now known to be a serious problem, and its something Carson only hinted at on the basis of what was known.

    By the way, no one ever followed up on those who took DDT for two years to see about liver damage or liver cancer. Again, you seem to have missed the point.

    DDT’s damage is to reproduction, chiefly. In the wild it mimics estrogen. It shrinks the testes of males of chordates, it swells the mammary glands of male mammals. It causes eggs to be infertile. It accumulates in the yolks of eggs, killing embryonic birds just as they get close to hatching. In the wild, DDT accumulates in living things, including plants, and multiplies its dosage as we rise through higher trophic levels. Top level consumers, like an eagle, egret or osprey, get a dose about ten million times higher than the dose sprayed on an estuary.

    Teaspoons to humans don’t begin to approach the dosages actually experienced by birds in the wild.

  8. Ed Darrell Says:

    What does DDT do that is so, so much worse than what malaria can do?

    DDT’s not-100%-conclusive effects: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DDT#Toxicity

    (Btw, to test for cancer with any substance, lab animals are exposed to thousands of times the rational everyday dosage for magnitudes longer periods – even artificial sweetener that millions of diabetics enjoy in cup of tea can cause cancer if this is done!)

    Malaria’s proven-time-and-again effects: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malaria#Symptoms

    But for a simple and direct comparison: Use lots of DDT, some people MAYBE PERHAPS POSSIBLY have shortened lifespans due to biomagnification of MAYBE PERHAPS POSSIBLY toxic DDT.

    DDT also kills the animals that Africans depend on for food, especially around lakes and rivers. One of the reasons DDT is resisted by people in Africa is that survivors of the starvations recall when DDT killed all the fish in the rivers after it was sprayed to control malaria. Then, because the dosage only got one generation of mosquitoes, malaria came roaring back as soon as the next generation of mosquitoes took to the air. Ineffectiveness is a key problem. Misuse of DDT only contributes to the ineffectiveness.

    And, as I mentioned, even the greenies advocate limited use of DDT in hut spraying — so unless you’re advocating a return to the fish-killing, super-mosquito producing past, you’re criticizing Carson for no good reason (as you now acknowledge).

    DDT alone could not control malaria. So long as humans remained that were infected, a new generation of mosquitoes would come along to spread the disease. So medical care is one of the keys — and DDT spraying tended to take away from the expansion of medical care. Modern results in Africa show DDT can be very effective in conjunction with bed nets and draining local sources of standing water; but these methods work with many other pesticides besides DDT. DDT offers no inherent advantage, but serious disadvantages, especially compared to short-lived toxics.

    In some laboratory tests, animals are given huge dosages. The recent studies on breast cancer are human studies, however, based on historic exposures, not lab-increased dosages. They show that cancers occur especially in the next generation — there’s that endocrine disruption thing again. Women exposed as children get breast cancers later. Women whose mothers were exposed get breast cancer. Their mothers didn’t get the cancer. This raises the alarms again about DDT in breastmilk, since there has been no woman found on Earth who does not have DDT to pass along in breastmilk. We need to worry about long-term exposures, not short term toxicity.

    That was what Carson warned about, by the way.

  9. Ed Darrell Says:

    So evidently, she supported careful use of DDT to control disease vectors, without proliferating resistance in them.

    But that’s not what happened, no. A decade after Carson passed away, enviro-pressuring caused DDT end up banned in the USA and several other ‘enlightened’ nations. Poorer developing countries that still wanted to use it were merely excluded from the bargaining table of the rich ‘progressive’ nations.

    DDT has been constantly available to third-world nations and developing nations, if they wanted it. The WHO campaign to eradicate malaria was frustrated by the inability of most African nations affected to mount any effective public health efforts — DDT was never used in several nations where it might have even done some good.

    The ban on DDT in the U.S. left manufacturing open for another 20 years, and encouraged manufacturing be sent to nations that really needed the stuff (one of the biggest pollution problems in America is the DDT contamination of the ocean off of Long Beach, where a DDT manufacturer evidently leaked the stuff into the ocean; most of this was done after Carson’s book, and much after the 1972 ban). DDT was available to anyone who wanted it. In fact, DDT has been in constant use in Mexico since 1946 — and they have experienced the same problems the rest of the world has with malaria making a comeback. DDT is ineffective as a panacea, even when it is still effective against some mosquitoes.

    Even the POPs Treaty has a special clause to allow DDT use and production. That DDT has been ineffective, though widely used and widely available, only puts the lie to the claim that it could have saved millions. It didn’t save millions, even where it was used.

    The progenitor case of noted well-meaning environmentalist says one intelligent and rational thing, and Green-sane groups run away with the hysteria to unilaterally impose their way of life?

    I favour reason over emotion, which is why both excluding the use of non-human-killing DDT and burying the rainforest in it are extreme in my book.

    The philosophical difference between me and Carson is that I frankly don’t give a ding about eagle chicks and songbirds, if even one human life can be saved by their total extinction. Call me a specieist, but Darwin’s survival-of-the-fittest evolution and Dawkin’s selfish gene would be proud (more sarcasm there).

    That’s the problem: Extinction of of many of the songbirds guarantees that more humans will die of malaria. You don’t care about greater death of humans in the outlying years, if you can get a good dig in at environmentalists now.

    Carson pointed out that natural controls, even in 1960, were often much more effective. She foretold the failure of the mosquito eradication campaign, and she outlined a campaign to reduce malaria to much less severe levels, using integrated pest management techniques known even in 1962. The tragedy is that these methods were frustrated until the 1990s.

    It’s bad enough that people unjustly blame Carson for deaths she fought to prevent. It’s worse when people miss the key messages of her books, that fighting disease can’t be done with a one-time application of poison, and that poisoning the world to increase life is a self-defeating proposition.

    And the practical difference between me and the First World Green-nuts who ran away with her theories and demonized DDT for half a century: I live in a tropical, mosquito-infested developing nation, not you.

    Oops, almost forgot this:

    —Can you list any scientific claim of Ms. Carson that has been disproven? I’m unaware of any.—

    I believe the lack of DDT toxicity to humans counts as ‘any’.

    Carson didn’t claim acute toxicity to humans anywhere in the book.

    However, had she done so, she would have been correct. Several humans have died from DDT, which is where we get the toxicity readings that are the foundation for our exposure standards.

  10. Scott Thong Says:

    Dr. J. Gordon Edwards was 84 years old. Most heart attack and stroke victims I personally know don’t even make it past 70… And that’s AFTER DDT was severely restricted.

    A hint in case I didn’t make it clear the previous multiple times I said it: Me Grimscot no care about dumb birds! Me Grimscot EAT dumb birds and no die of fake poison!

    I give in on Rachel Carson – whom I never actually blamed for any of the DTT ban, as she died a mere 2 years after Silent Spring came out. No, I pin the blame squarely on the Green-sane crowd. Sorry if I gave the wrong impression with my post title.

    The opening paragraph I used is intentional, however – as I feel Rachel Carson would grieve at the revelation of millions of human deaths. Something that Envirofascists cheer over, as that means fewer Third World people spoiling all that tourism-package natural beauty.

    So, conclusions:

    1) Rachel Carson is not to blame except for her good intentions indirectly giving the Green-Nuts the platform for imposing their Greenocidal rule over the developing world.

    2) DDT is potentially poisonous, but any gambling man will bet that a disease-scourged native would prefer the remote chance of future mild health complications from low levels of indirect DDT exposure over the very high probability of dying in screaming, convulsing, feverish agony in a few days.

    3) I am a Reich Wing fascist who hates little burdies and would shoot them with my lava breath if they so much as got in the way of bettering a human life.Me Grimscot say, deal with it!

    Feel free to continue the discussion, I find it both amusing and enlightening. Partly because I get to practice my new gruff Grimscot persona.

  11. Scott Thong Says:

    PS. I support the use of Intergrated Pest Management. Frankly, if enrivomental groups place human wellbeing at the forefront, then I have absolutely no quarrel with them. But when the sanctity of virgin mother Gaia takes precedence over humanity, that’s when I get all riled up.

  12. Ed Darrell Says:

    You support integrated pest management so long as it doesn’t do what it’s supposed to do, or if in some other way it allows you to rail at the good people who invented it, unjustifiably.

    Never let the facts or good manners get in the way of a drunk-style rant.

  13. Scott Thong Says:

    I’ve been thinking about your remarks about DDT, and I think I’ve come to agree that it wouldn’t have been to miracle solution to malaria that its strongest proponents (and loudest anti-Carson opponents) make it out to be.

    And yeah, I’ve been pretty shrill on environmentalists – but let me disclaim that in my cynical worldview, most so-called Greens give not a damn about the environment, human life or bio-diversity – just the narrow slice of reality that suits their own perspective and beliefs, smothered in the acceptable-looking icing of ‘caring for nature’.

    But something has to be said about IPM – it takes a while to get into gear. Let’s give an estimate of ten years. In the ten years before IPM even starts having appreciable effects, and the years it takes to accelerate its effects, how many people would suffer and die from vector-borne diseases?

    It’s okay if one looks at it from a purely numerical persepctive… Statistics and all that, what works best in the 100-year run. But what about the human aspect? To be most poignant, what if we were the ones living next to a swamp and being told to put up with vector-borne diseases for the next 30 years while the better-in-long-term programme does its stuff?

    I wouldn’t stand for it, and I projection that no one else would either.

  14. Marjorie Mazel Hecht Says:

    Mr. Darrell is inaccurate on DDT availability, use, and effectiveness.

    DDT was not available in almost all of the developing sector after it was banned in the United States, because U.S. AID and other NGO aid organizations would not fund any projects that used DDT. If you look at where it is now used for spraying the indoor walls of houses, it is extremely effective, including where mosquitoes are resistant to DDT, because DDT, unlike most other pesticides, is a repellent and irritant, in addition to killing the mosquitoes. Most mosquitoes will not enter a house that has been sprayed. Of those that enter, most leave quickly.

    The World Health Organization ended its 30-year ban on DDT use in September 2006, precisely because of DDT’s effectiveness in stopping the spread of malaria. The malaria control statistics from Latin America and from South Africa show that those countries that banned DDT (including Mexico) had increasing malaria cases. Countries that kept up indoor spraying did not.

    DDT is not a magic bullet for malaria. We need a return to traditional public health infrastructure which has been taken down in the past 40 years. We need economic development and industrialization. These things have been opposed by the neo-cons and environmentalists alike. We need a return to the policies of FDR, who envisioned the industrial development of Africa and other pre-war colonial regions using American System economics, not Empire policies.

    The ban on DDT, like many other policies affecting the Third World, has its roots in population control, as Alexander King, co-founder of the Club of Rome forthrightly admitted. Malthusians, like Bertrand Russell, welcomed disease and war as a way of culling excess population, especially people of color. This Malthusianism is what is behind the environmentalist movement today, whether or not most environmentalists realize this.

    For more on DDT, see http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com/2006_articles/Donald_Roberts.pdf
    as well as other articles on the 21st Century Science & Technology website. You might also want to read Gordon Edwards’s article on the lies of Rachel Carson, which raises the question of why she misrepresented the results of the scientific studies she was reporting on in attempting to show the dangers of DDT.

    Sincerely,

    Marje Hecht
    Managing Editor
    21st Century Science & Technology

  15. Ed Darrell Says:

    Miss Hecht,

    I wonder if you would be so kind as to direct me to where I might find where WHO banned the use of DDT. If there was a ban, as you argue, surely there is some statement to that effect.

    And, with that ban in place, how was it that Mexico and South Africa continued to use DDT constantly through the entire period?

    I think any fair analysis indicates that DDT was not the panacea it was made out to be by the anti-Carsonites. And that is still true: DDT alone cannot possibly conquer malaria. DDT used with bed nets, used in a carefully controlled and researched program if IPM, and used where health care is dramatically updated, can help. DDT has proven to be a failure, ultimately, everywhere it was tried without the full program. Mexico, for example, suffered the same rise in malaria incidence and malaria mortality that the rest of the world did, despite having used DDT constantly since 1946. Only after adopting the Rachel Carson-friendly program promoted by WHO and the Wellcome Trust did Mexico start to cut into its malaria rates.

    DDT is a chemical pesticide with significant dangers and harmful effects. We cannot poison Africa to make its health care better. We cannot poison Africa to improve the screens in huts and houses. DDT couldn’t stop the malaria parasites from becoming resistant to pharmaceuticals, and it still can’t.

    You might want to know that Gordon Edwards seemed to be affected in his latter years with an irrational hatred of Rachel Carson. Several places he makes fantastic claims where he calls statements of Carson “lies” — but it turns out it is Ms. Hecht’s colleagues who lie instead. For example, Edwards and Steven Milloy claim that bird hatches were normal from birds fed DDT. They fail to mention that the birds in the study were not raptors, who are more susceptible to DDT. And critically, dishonestly, they cite only Ms. Carson’s note that about 80% of one specie’s eggs hatched, cutting her quote of a distinguished ornithologist who said that fully half of those hatchlings died within a few days, and that the reproduction of these birds was severely disrupted.

    Ms. Carson’s research was vouched for as accurate by a distinguished panel of scientists appointed by President Kennedy in the wake of a brutal anti-Carson public relations campaign when her book was serialized in The New Yorker. The President’s Council of Scientific Advisors vindicated Ms. Carson fully. Dr. Edwards was a distinguished entomologist, but frankly, I trust more the President’s Council to have gotten it right.

    Discovery Magazine this month has a feature on DDT. While the title looks as if it perhaps had a question mark left off, it does note that Ms. Carson’s claims of damage to birds were verified by more than 1,000 follow-up studies published in science journals. There has not been a single article verifying Dr. Edwards’ complaints. While I’m sure there were errors in Ms. Carson’s book, the ratio of 1,000 to 0, scientific studies corroborating Carson versus those corroborating Edwards, is very persuasive.

    Ms. Hecht’s claims that environmentalists welcomed disease are scurrilous, and beneath contempt. She should be ashamed at stooping to such allegations. If there is a case to be made for DDT, it should be made on the merits, and not on false allegations and a corporate-sponsored smear campaign.

    Rachel Carson got it right. Had we followed her advice in fighting malaria in the 1960s, we could have saved thousands of lives, perhaps millions. Slamming her reputation now, when DDT is singularly ineffective in doing what needs to be done, does nothing to save any life.

    I wish 21st Century Science and Technology would support proven science, and not fringe solutions that allow diseases to rage, or that would do more damage than good.

  16. Ed Darrell Says:

    Ms. Hecht has moved on, I’m sure — but in the off chance she might still be paying attention, let’s be clear: Gordon Edwards’ claims against Carson are mostly fiction, and totally scurrilous. Anyone who claims to represent 21st century technology needs to be a lot more careful with the facts.

  17. hutchrun Says:

    Most prior use of DDT was in agriculture, but the controlled use of DDT continues to this day for the purposes of public health. Current use for disease control requires only a small fraction of the amounts previously used in agriculture, and at these levels the pesticide is much less likely to cause environmental problems. Residual house spraying involves the treatment of all interior walls and ceilings with insecticide, and is particularly effective against mosquitoes, which favour indoor resting before or after feeding. Advocated as the mainstay of malaria eradication programmes in the late 1950s and 1960s, DDT remains a major component of control programmes in southern African states, though many countries have abandoned or curtailed their spraying activities.

  18. Mad Bluebird Says:

    The greens are now trying to ban the use of DDT in africa and using this same lies as always i mean even AL GORE is spreading these same green lies the fact is ROBINS wwre doing well when DDT was used and the fact is birds are suffering becuase of WEST NILE VIRUS becuase of too many mosqitos everywhere

  19. Ed Darrell Says:

    Sorry, no, it’s not the “greens” trying to ban DDT in Africa. It’s the businessmen — cotton growers, mostly. The greens, including the Sierra Club and Environmental Defense, endorse the use of DDT in limited Indoor Residual Spraying programs (IRS), which is what is proposed in Africa.

    Al Gore is right. Robins died by the thousands when poisoned with DDT, and in the U.S. we nearly lost peregrine falcons, osprey, brown pelicans and the bald eagle, among many other birds. And bats.

    If you have some evidence of robins doing well during spraying, it would be a noteworthy scientific paper. No such paper exists in the literature now.

    DDT is ineffective against the mosquitoes that carry West Nile virus, by the way — they need to be killed as larva, in the water. DDT is not a specific enough poison for such use. Check with your local mosquito control group, don’t take my word for it.

    DDT advocacy reaches new lows.

  20. Helen Dyer Says:

    Thought I’d check on what the Sierra Club actually says about DDT:

    “Sierra Club’s Position on the World Heath Organization’s Promotion of Indoor Use of DDT to Control Malaria

    On September 15, 2006, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that it was giving DDT “a clean bill of health” for use in combatting malaria in Africa.

    The Sierra Club strongly disagrees with the WHO’s denial of the potential health and environmental risks of using DDT. Sierra Club is deeply concerned that WHO’s new position statement on “indoor residual spraying” increases the potential for widespread misuse and accidents due to the continued manufacture, storage and applications of DDT.”

    Sorry Ed, doesn’t sound like much of an endorsement to me!

    Helen

  21. Ed Darrell Says:

    So, Helen, have you been tracking what is really going on in Africa with DDT? Sierra Club is nowhere to be seen. Tobacco companies and cotton growers suing to stop the use of DDT, not any environmental group.

    In the meantime, with the Gates Foundation providing serious funding, it turns out that bednets work really well to reduce malaria.

    Sorry, Helen, Sierra Club’s policy statement without any action doesn’t change the fact that Environmental Defense — the first group ever to sue to stop DDT — has endorsed DDT use in IRS, and it’s being done.

    And, see this post on a Sierra Club blog, a year after that statement on WHO’s policy:
    http://www.sierraclub.org/compass/2007/08/ddt-good-and-bad.asp

    What you cannot find is evidence of the Sierra Club standing stupidly against the use of DDT in any place where DDT appears to be the best solution, nor even where DDT is just a good alternative.

    Sorry, Helen, a lack of a warm endorsement from the Sierra Club is not ‘environmentalists stopping the use of DDT,’ nor is it even strong opposition to DDT.

  22. Anthropological Global Warming - RIP « Reformed Musings Says:

    […] she just didn’t think that far ahead. Burning Hot from Indonesia wonders the same in his post Rachael Carson – Environmental Queen of Green Genocide. It isn’t always what you write, but what you choose to leave out – the devil is in the […]

  23. Ed Darrell Says:

    And what Reformed Musings leaves out is all the critical facts, and honesty.

    Shame on him.

    C’mon over to Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub. Search for Rachel Carson, or for DDT, get the facts. I even link to contrary sources, and unlike Reformed Musings, I don’t censor contrary opinions, and especially I don’t censor contrary facts. The truth is our friend, you know. He doesn’t.

  24. Cosmic Condor Says:

    The truth was that DDT wasnt harming birds as she claimed in her book SILENT SPRING and we wouldnt have WEST NILE VIRUS harming the birds if we still had DDT and the millions of death cuased by MALARIA becuase of the lies of the greens

  25. Ed Darrell Says:

    There is no study that does not verify Rachel Carson’s book. There is not a single scientific study that contradicts her statements.

    West Nile virus is carried by a species of mosquito that does not carry malaria. DDT is particularly ineffective against West Nile because of the way this mosquito lives, and application to water — the only place you could use DDT against this species — kills off more beneficial species, including predators of the mosquito like fish.

    The truth was what Rachel Carson wrote. Opposition to DDT in Africa, today, comes from farmers and businessmen, not from environmentalists.

    The facts may be strange, but they are the facts.

  26. nancy nichols Says:

    iused to read the debate in the palo alto times where dr.edwards talked about ingesting ddt.he claimed to take 1 tsp every day,not every week.the amount mentioned in the study(unquoted) in this blog, as taken orally by humans ,(35mg) is a far cry from a tsp.to find out how much of a far cry we would have to weigh it.
    as a horticulturalist,i had concerns about ddt’s persistence in the soil and water,which is why it was ultimately banned-not because of its immediate deadly toxicity to humans or baby birds.it killed organisms insoil needed for plant nutrients and breakdown of products needed for humous.
    its use in streams and rivers where it killed things other than anopheles mosquitos and got into lakes etc.was also a concern.
    why dr edwards felt the need to take on rachel carson so many years after her book was published and even after her death,where she could not respond to his debate makes me question his character;(along with his claim to take ddt every day with breakfast).
    -nancy nichols

  27. nancy nichols Says:

    i checked the weight:1tsp of ddt=7 grams;35mg=.007tsps.these are fcts.what you do with them to make a decision is not something im going to make any suggestions on at the moment.
    however,i will say this:im glad it was me who had the liscence to use pesticides and herbecides and not some of you.
    -nancy nichols

  28. Ed Darrell Says:

    Nancy, as you know, DDT is not soluble in water. In what solution did Dr. Edwards take the stuff?

    What are the symptoms of acute DDT poisoning, and how does DDT kill bats and other mammals? How did Dr. Edwards die?

  29. Scott Thong Says:

    I would avoid DDT for agriculture, but recommend it for use in personal health applications.

  30. SPURWING PLOVER Says:

    The entire enviromental movment has been built upon lies and junk science mfrom RACHEAL CARSON to AL GORE its all fruad and lies

  31. Ed Darrell Says:

    Spurwing plover, please list for us one falsehood from Rachel Carson’s book, Silent Spring.

    Maybe I should rephrase that: I dare you to list one inaccuracy in the book. Bet you can’t

  32. nancy nichols Says:

    sweeping statements in science are never true.what al gore says is mostly junk.what rachel carson said is mostly true.al gore doesnt say anything about ddt.he talks about global warming.remember>>>>>?

  33. SPURWING PLOVER Says:

    Theres lot of them mr know it all just read the book ECO-FREAKS if you care

  34. agnesangst Says:

    spurwig plover???is it potentially lethal?

  35. sarah Says:

    Wow. Obviously, you have not read the book. She does not scream hysterically through her writing in any sense, but illustrates her ideas very logically and scientifically, referencing and supporting her work very carefully as she already knew that there was going to be people like you, edwards and all those big industries who pollute the world to make as much money as they can. Maybe if you could somehow come up with some scientific support as to how DDT is going to help the world, instead of gabbing on about J. Gordon Edwards ridiculous, UNTRUTHFUL , unreferenced work i might change my views. Please consider doing a lot more research from scientific sources because DDT is NOT going to cure Malaria. Mosquito resistance to Insecticide Treated Nets which have been distributed to Africa in the last few years are being proven as INEFFECTIVE. here’s a link on the research –

    http://www.parasitesandvectors.com/content/4/1/154 .

    i could go on and on and on…

  36. Scott Thong Says:

    Very well said, so what alternative do you suggest for Africa? Citronella patches?

  37. Ed Darrell Says:

    At peak DDT use, in 1959 and 1960, four million people a year died from malaria. As of 2008, annual deaths to malaria worldwide fell below 800,000, the lowest level in human history. Annual infections fell from 500 million in 1972 — the year the U.S. stopped spraying DDT on cotton crops — to 250 million. That’s a 75% reduction in deaths, and a 50% reduction in total infections, while population doubled.

    Malaria infections and deaths are dropping in Africa. Bednets are more effective than DDT. Improving health systems deliver treatments better — I recommend for Africa that we continue to use bednets and better medical care. It’s working much better than DDT did.

  38. Scott Thong Says:

    If it works, then let’s go for it – I’m all for evidence based solutions, even if it goes against my current ideological bent.

  39. Scott Thong Says:

    Or this:

    Experimental Malaria Vaccine Proves Effective In Protecting Children

  40. Light it up. | Conservative Outdoors Says:

    […] invention and laugh about how stupid humans were…Rachel Carson. You don’t know who Rachel Carson was? Silent Spring? The lies about DDT? The Mother of the Earth Worship Eco-Nut movement? Boy, […]

  41. Thong Operation Blog Says:

    Restricted Womens Key Chain Thong…

    […] ngs with insecticide, and is particularly effective against mosquitoes, which fa […]…

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