Environmental Nationalism: The Fascist Position on Environmental Economics
“The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.”
(Genesis 2:15, English Standard Version Bible)
We see in the Genesis account of creation that God delegated his authority of the Earth to mankind to tend to his garden and have dominion over.
Capitalism ushered in the Industrial Revolution by the mid-18th century. The leading materialistic; but opposed, economic systems of our time: Capitalism, Socialism (and by implication Communism), all dictate economic growth by increased production and the constant consumption of natural resources. As the world’s population continues to grow under the various hodgepodge of Capitalist-Socialist economies around the globe, there is a clearly infinite demand on finite resources. Both Adam Smith and Karl Marx’s theories do not presuppose a finite world because that knowledge simply wasn’t available at the time. Yet, we continue to entrust our vitality under these systems and their derivatives as if they can fundamentally address the threatening environmental concerns of our time while growing the economy.
Americans are experiencing a variety of issues where environmental concerns seem diametrically opposed to free market capitalism. A decaying, working-middle class that necessitates the return of industry and manufacturing, while preserving air quality and reducing pollutants. An ever expanding population that necessitates more housing and development, while reducing impervious surfaces that degrade water quality and removal of greenery. Traffic congestion that increases commute time and carbon emissions resulting from urban sprawl, while decreasing quality of life and leaving inner cities in a state of disrepair and blight.
The McDonalds Big Mac makes a great case study for inherent inability of the current pseudo-Capitalist system to address climate change. The Big Mac, is a largely government subsidized 500+ calorie sandwich. The beef and cheese of course come from cows. There is an obvious market demand for sandwiches like the Big Mac among the malnourished, yet overweight American populace. Many Americans get their daily macronutrients from foods with little nutritional value like the Big Mac. The cow that produces the dairy and beef necessary for these cheap sandwiches is typically fed on a diet of corn that is subsidized by the taxpayer. The University of Nebraska estimates that one acre of planted corn will feed a 1200 lb. cow for 44 days (http://beef.unl.edu/cattleproduction/grazecorn2007). The United States is the largest producer of corn in the world with an estimated 80,000 acres devoted to corn production (http://www.indexmundi.com/agriculture/?commodity=corn). Currently, the EPA estimates that only 12 percent of CO2 emissions are “sunk” or offset by being stored in plants and trees. The market demand for a cheap source of protein and fat such as beef has led to the deforestation of massive amounts of fertile land to raise corn. In addition to reducing the green systems necessary to mitigate carbon emissions, cows also produce massive amounts of Methane gas CH4 ), which contributes 23X more to Ozone depletion than Carbon Dioxide.
The following tables indicates the CO2 production in kg CO2 equivalents per kg of meat depending on the animal:
1 kg of meat from
produces kg CO2e
Source: Environmental Impacts on Food Production and Consumption. http://www.defra.gov.uk/science/project_data/DocumentLibrary/EV02007/EV02007_4601_FRP.pdf
The Fascist-Corporatist state makes the economy a means to an end, that being the collective betterment of the state. Capitalism aims for outputs (profits, lower prices), while Corporatism aims for outcomes using outputs towards those ends. In this regard, the Fascist state has the strong arm to address outcomes such as climate change that the ‘invisible hand’ of capitalism cannot. The Fascist government insulates itself from the influence of private sector special interests, lobbyists and politicians looking to block climate change policies, or even outright denying the fact. While addressing climate change, the Fascist state will not do so at the expense of any and all economic growth and development, as many on the left would propose. Nor would the Fascist state sign onto a globalist environmental agenda at the expense of nationalistic goals of self-interest.
Doctrinally, the Fascist state has many more tools at its disposal to address economic growth and environmental resiliency, which exists as a double-aged sword under the current system. Closing the borders will prevent the current trend of economic ‘free-riders’ who consume and degrade natural resources without paying taxes to the state who is charged to monitor and remediate environmental concerns. The strong state will swiftly, justly, and authoritatively punish those who degrade, and abuse the environment. Under Fascism, property rights will be respected inasmuch as that right is being exercised toward the betterment of the collective and used responsibly. The state will not set idle while contaminated brownfields dilute water and air quality to the detriment of the community simply because it lacks the authority to reclaim and remediate the site. The state will vastly expand the nation’s green-systems at the expense of the largest carbon emitters, locking them into national forests and permitting only passive recreation. The state will retrieve vacant, abandoned, and unused properties to promote agricultural uses like clean food production, forestry, solar panels, and wind turbines depending on the clime. Infill and denser development in major cities will be the new housing trend while locking the suburban sprawl that has been the trend for the last 70+ years, resulting in the clearing of forests and increased carbon emissions from congestion. While encouraging residential expansion within major metropolitan areas, the state will also focus on creating mass transit to and from these areas to reduce emissions and improve commute times.
Under the Corporatism, the state will oversee and guide the economy when need be in regards to production, price, and consumption; especially with regards to the environment. The state will bring the corporations, economists, and scientists to the table with regards to matters such as energy and non-renewable resources. The state will analyze the economic impact, and environmental implications of, and intervene when necessary for the social good. The new state focus on environmental resiliency will improve economic conditions with new capital infrastructure projects, and emerging green industries.
The complexity of the environment necessitates complex solutions, not the chaos of Capitalism, where trees are only valuable insomuch as they create paper. Gone will be the days of power companies removing solar panels on sites that put more power back into the grid than they drain for the simple preservation of profits. While it’s folly to imagine an entire modern economy powered off wind turbines, a combination of renewable and non-renewable sources can and should be sought after. A shift from coal to fracking and natural gas along with job training for miners should occur. Geothermal energy promises to flatten out electric costs during the peak seasons of summer and winter. The safe use of nuclear power has come a long way since Chernobyl and should be explored where gaps within gaps of cleaner alternatives.
The current Capitalist system whereby Democracy merely acts as part of the profit equation can only offer America continued consumption and degradation. Republicans outright deny Climate Change for their financiers against the consensus of experts in the field. Democrats offer short-sighted Keynesian solutions or would have development grind to halt altogether.
Marxism in all its variations, suffers from the “tragedy of the commons” as biologist Garrett Hardin put it. When property, and resources are treated completely as communal and free they will inevitably be overused, and abused without foresight to future generations. As with Capitalism, Socialism presupposes an ever expanding production and thus consumption of resources. By merely redistributing wealth, an economy in no way addresses environmental concerns.
The Fascist-Corporatist state looks beyond brief elections cycles and quarterly profit earnings to the generational betterment of the collective. The Fascist state will not let economic decisions be dictated by solely firms in that it would become a corporatocracy. The Fascist state will not let the economic decisions be dictated by scientists in that it would become a technocracy. Rather, the Fascist-Corporatist state will consider to the expertise of economists, and scientists to manage an economy for the greater good of the collective. Economic and Environmental impacts will be quantified to the greatest extent possible in the decision making model. The Fascist knows that his time on this earth will inevitably come to an end, but he enamors and labors to leave a better nation than he received to his ancestors and countrymen.
The threat of Climate Change demands an almost militant response. It will require a total war effort on behalf of the state, and nation. The capitalist system of never ending consumption and the democratic farce lacks the dexterity needed to reverse centuries of its own workmanship. The strength of the Fascist state managing the economy through corporatism, will serve as a model for the world on how to address an in issue that threatens to undue it. The Fascist party aims at not only regenerating the honor and integrity of the state, but of the environment as well.