ConservAmerica Mad at Maddow

April 7, 2012

When  somebody is doing something right, for the right reasons, I like to give them their due. The folks I’ve met from ConservAmerica, formerly Republicans for Environmental Protection are the kind of mainstream republicans that I grew up with.  There are solutions to environmental problems that can come from the right, cap and trade, for instance.  And we need to hear them.

On Spaceship Earth, none of us are  passengers. We are all crew. And we’re going to need all hands on deck to solve this planetary emergency – so I welcome any and all who follow science and fact, and I hope folks from ConservAmerica will let me know whenever they have something important to share.

Jim Depeso at

All conservatives out there who believe Rachel Maddow gets her facts wrong, is prone to exaggeration, and indulges in misrepresentation for its schlocky entertainment value, please raise your hands.

Well, Maddow did it again in her nightly tirade April 5. She said our organization’s new name, ConservAmerica, indicates that we’re giving up on the Republican Party. Maddow also couldn’t resist a puerile cheap shot—likening the name ConservAmerica to the name of a shady mortgage dealer.

Since Maddow didn’t bother contacting us to get our side of the story—journalism 101, folks—we’ll put our side of the story out there.

ConservAmerica is a Republican organization. Always has been. We were founded in 1995 to restore the Republican Party’s great conservation tradition, which is grounded in the timeless conservative ethic of stewardship.

The name change reflects the need to draw more recognition to the inherent connection between conservation and conservatism.

Maddow—highlighting her partisan tendencies—didn’t report our stated reason for the name change, but simply made up her own reason.

Real conservatism is about prudence and responsible stewardship. We want to make that case more strongly. Our mission is the same, and whether Rachel Maddow cares about the truth or not, we are as Republican today as we were last week.


Hmm. GOP lawmakers and presidential candidates reject climate science, intend to gut EPA funding, characterize the cap-and-trade plan they came up with as a radical socialist plot, want to weaken clean air and clean water laws, and a group called Republicans for Environmental Protection feels compelled to remove the word “Republican” from its name … but talk radio and “the left” are giving people the wrong idea about the contemporary GOP?

To be sure, the problem is not with ConservAmerica, which is led by credible officials who clearly want to do the right thing. Rather, the problem is with those officials’ party, which insists on ignoring sensible voices like ConservAmerica’s.

As Daniel Weiss, director of climate strategy for the Center for American Progress Action Fund, told Politico, “Under either name … they face a fundamental challenge that the pro-conservation party of Roosevelt, Nixon, Schwarzenegger and McCain has become the climate science denial party of Romney, Santorum and Limbaugh.”


9 Responses to “ConservAmerica Mad at Maddow”

  1. witsendnj Says:

    But Cap and Trade is not a solution for environmental problems. It’s a stupid shell game. Even Hansen’s idea to tax carbon won’t go far enough. We need to ration fuel.

    That’s the problem with trying to be any part of Republican or indeed, bi-partisan predatory capitalism and endless growth, which are inherently incompatible with a truly sustainable society.

    • ctl12 Says:

      Only because you don’t understand cap n trade, which was developed by Reagan’s staff and approved under Bush1 to deal with acid rain. A cap n trade system, that is revenue neutral, would merely charge the producers or generators of carbon – so yes the person selling coal gets taxed or the electric company who chooses to use coal or oil to generate electric. But wait you say, they I’ll just pass on that cost to me the me the end user – and my costs go up! That is where the cap n trade comes in, at least the revenue neutral version as those taxes paid in by the carbon producer are dispersed to the end users in the form of tax breaks offsetting what was collected. So the cost doesn’t get passed on to you. The rate that they can produce is capped and then they are taxed on anything above – this is much better than mere regulation which will be passed straight to the end user. So what can congress do? Pass a revenue neutral cap n trade measure that is based on personal responsibility – you choose to make dirty energy you pay. If they don’t, the EPA will regulate and then we again subsidize big oil and big coal.

  2. Amen. Wow. That’s the second time I’ve heard that sentiment in a week. Is there hope yet? Carbon trading, cap and trade, etc., change the environment into a corporation manipulated commodity. They are a corporate answer to a corporate problem that leaves society out entirely. Yet the corporate model got us to this precipice.

  3. mbrysonb Says:

    The problem is in the economy– all the incentives support taking advantage of externalities since no individual directly bears their costs. So I don’t object to trying to come up with an economic solution to an economic problem– if environmental costs are truly reflected in the price we pay for energy and other goods, the incentive to reduce those costs will change peoples’ economic behaviour. Of course it won’t work if the price isn’t high enough to match the damage that we’re causing, or if the price doesn’t take account of all the damage done– and the adjustment will have to start soon, or we’ll be in such deep trouble that only radical command-and-control methods will work.

    It’s part of contemporary libertarian politics to pretend that the market always takes everything into account automatically (which is insane– I can only understand it as a new kind of religion that substitutes the all-knowing invisible hand for God). So they simply deny the existence of externalities. If their policies continue to win out, it will guarantee the biggest tragedy of the commons disaster in human history.

  4. MorinMoss Says:

    They may have changed the name and their goals may be worthwhile but ConservAmerica still suffers from some of the oversensitivity and hysterical blindness that characterizes the modern Republicans.

    And they’ve been around since ’95? And accomplished bugger-all?

    They should stop worrying about what Rachel says and get to work on the flipflopping pinheads in their party – it’s not like any of the Teapublicans look to the Maddow Show to well, tell them what to think.

  5. neilrieck Says:

    In the past month we’ve seen the price of gasoline rise for no other reason than the greed of middle men. On top of that, the fossil fuel industry releases “stories” to media in order to prime us for their greed. For example: “Winter is coming and everyone will need to heat their homes”, “Summer is coming and everyone will be traveling”.

    When all this is behind us, North Americans will remain smug knowing that gasoline prices went higher only due to the actions of corporate greed and not a carbon-tax.

    Meanwhile, 25 years from now the cost of sunlight and wind will be the same as now, while the cost of the technology to utilize those sources will be a whole lot lower.

  6. And yesterday, Exxon Mobil had an ad blitz at The Masters telling us that they can do fracking safely and the Keystone project will provide gas for Americans, provide 500,000 new quality jobs for Americans, and be good smart thinking for America. Your tax dollars at work.

    • MorinMoss Says:

      Those Exxon ads are all over the place – they are being shown in between clips from Maddow’s show on MSNBC

  7. […] for Environmental Protection dropped the “Republican” from its name (the latter caused quite a stir).  With even 52% of Republicans stressing climate action, the party as a whole relentlessly […]

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