Mercyhurst College doesn’t hold back when it comes to the environment.
Although "Earth Day" is just one day, the Pennsylvania school is celebrating the day with a week’s worth of activities.
According to a press release on the school’s website, activities will include an eco-psychology workshop, a cleanup of the mouth of Elk Creek, a political roundtable breakfast and a keynote address from liberal author James Howard Kunstler.
The Mercyhurst Green Team and the college’s Office of Sustainability are sponsoring Kunstler’s visit to campus.
So who is James Howard Kunstler?
If you go by the school’s press release, he’s the author of "The Long Emergency" — a "riveting and authoritative" work where "he offers a shocking vision of a post-oil future."
The school’s write-up goes on to say, "As a result of artificially cheap fossil-fuel energy, Kunstler argues, we have developed global models of industry, commerce, food production, and finance that will collapse. The Long Emergency describes what Kunstler says we can expect after the tipping point of global peak oil production is passed."
Now, if you go to Kunstle’s website you get a much better feel for the man.
According to his posted bio, he has all the right liberal credentials: regular contributor to the New York Times Sunday Magazine and Op-Ed page, staff writer for Rolling Stone Magazine and he’s lectured at Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Dartmouth, Cornell, MIT among other schools.
Also on his website are the remarks he made during a speech last December to the Providence, Rhode Island Peace Project. Kunstle expressed the following thoughts on the war in Iraq:
"We occupied Iraq in order to influence and moderate the behavior of Iraq’s immediate neighbors on both sides — Iran and Saudi Arabia, two of the most important oil producers in the world — as well as to gain direct control over the oil resources of Iraq, also a major oil producer. In short, to gain a major foothold in the region where two thirds of world’s remaining oil is so as to excercise some say over its allocation. We invaded Iraq for another reason. Because after the attacks of 9/11 we had to kick some Islamic ass."
And as for his latest book, "’The Long Emergency’ is about the challenges posed by the coming permanent global oil crisis, climate change, and other ‘converging catastrophes of the 21st Century.’"
Now, if I were a liberal college administrator, I’d say Kunstler is the perfect speaker for an Earth "Week" celebration. But, if I were a parent paying tuition for my child’s education, I’d be a little more than upset that my hard-earn money was going to support a school that promotes the ideas of a hard-line liberal.