, Newburyport, MA


April 10, 2013

Gone with the wave

To the editor:

Anyone wondering how Newbury officials “are saying that homeowners can rebuild on oceanfront lots” (“Tax relief planned for owners of destroyed homes on Plum Island,” March 28) needs to consider a long-running historical precedent in the art of denial and defiance.

In light of our recent tendency to treat comparisons as equations, I must preface this with a reminder that 12 can be compared to 24 by noting the common denominators (2, 3, 4, and 6), by expressing them as dozens (one and two) or in relation to each other (half and double).

It would take a very low common denominator of another kind to claim that any of these three comparisons equates 12 with 24, as low as one saying that Plum Islanders believe in slavery or that Scarlett O’Hara’s Tara was built on a sand dune.


To this day many Southerners insist that the Civil War had less to do with slavery — which their textbooks still call a “benevolent institution” — than with states rights.

Today on Plum Island erosion has less to do with science — whose advocates are dismissed as “eco-nuts” — than with property rights.

They own the property, they have the rights.

This same attitude — that economic interests and ownership dictate rights — drives the debate over the Keystone XL pipeline.

No matter that just this month Americans have suffered two major spills in Arkansas and Texas, and that another, by rail, occurred in Canada where Keystone will originate.

No matter that increasing numbers of deformed fish are being taken out Athabasca Lake and River near the Keystone tar sands.

All that matters are the frequent television ads with colorfully dressed and smiling diverse casts telling us in lush drawls how “green” and “conscientious” companies such as General Electric and BP are, and how much BP “has learned” from its “experience” in the Gulf of Mexico.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

NDN Video
Heartwarming 'Batkid Begins' Documentary is Tear-Jerker Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza Meet the Man Behind Dumb Starbucks Chris Pratt Adorably Surprises Kids at a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Screening NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show'
Special Features
NRA Waterfront Plans