NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Opinion

September 26, 2013

Sugaring our visions of paradise

To the editor:

With a heartfelt wish for David Strand’s speedy recovery from the sting of someone who thinks that a CEO of a marketing firm calling for the privatization of public land might in any way be a conflict of interest, I recommend medicine he’s sure to enjoy:

A 2006 book, “The Swamp” by Michael Grunwald, a chronicle of attempts over the last 150 years to develop the Florida Everglades and the subsequent economic disaster and environmental degradation that continues to this day.

If, while recuperating in his hammock (Letter, Aug. 12), Mr. Strand can overlook the loss of life, ruined livelihoods, endangered species and wasted public money, he can relish many examples of entrepreneurs and politicians who ignored all that just as thoroughly as they did geologists, oceanographers, physicists and botanists.

Yes, people just like him, as evidenced in his last month’s letter and in his July 13 Viewpoint, neither of which included a single word about rising sea levels, melting glaciers, more hurricanes reaching farther north and turning west, 15-foot river surges flooding NYC as far inland as Haverhill following Sandy last year, nor even the fact of standing water in the lot by the Black Cow two years ago.

So here’s to the recovery of a guy who, rather than bother us with talk of flood plains, whets our appetite with “tapas and sushi.”

And, rather than inconvenience us with meteorologists, warms our hearts with a “vision” for his young daughter’s future.

In fact, “The Swamp” will serve a dual purpose when Mr. Strand has recovered enough to read its inspirational stories to his daughter — leaving out, of course, all the bad stuff — while offering her role models galore.

And, like those role models, Mr. Strand is quite good at leaving out the bad stuff.

Jack Garvey

Plum Island

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