For the purpose of this column, I am going to define “environmentalists” as socialists disguised as conservationists.

While this definition does not fit all environmentalists, I believe it is accurate to say it characterizes the leadership of a movement that is now threatening our national health and prosperity.

Environmentalists are like the phony soothsayers of old – the Rasputins of the world who force their way on others by claiming special insight into cataclysmic future events that can destroy the American way of life, which they detest, by attempting to deprive the nation of the energy resources it needs to grow and function as the greatest economy on Earth – one that feeds the planet, one that creates wealth and opportunity for billions, one that saves the lives and makes them better at home and around the world.

They have claimed America must stop drilling for oil because it destroys the environment, not to mention Teddy Kennedy’s view on Martha’s Vineyard.

They have claimed we have to wean ourselves off oil because it is in short supply and pollutes the air.

They have claimed burning oil and gas creates gases that will lead to rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and catastrophic temperature increases.

They have claimed that oil refineries are dangerous and demanded that no more be built in the U.S. – none have been for the last 32 years!

They have claimed that the best alternative to oil, nuclear power, is even more dangerous and have successfully averted the building of any new plants in the U.S. for the last 12 years.

They have claimed the day of reckoning is coming for the U.S.

As Malcolm X and Jeremiah Wright would say, “The chickens have come home to roost.” The day of reckoning is here!

Gasoline prices are approaching $4. Skyrocketing oil prices are triggering increases in the price of food and anything that needs to be transported. Businesses with small profit margins are collapsing. Jobs are going overseas where environmentalists are kept on short leashes.

How long are Americans going to stand for this?

How long will it take for them to figure out who is to blame?

Will they listen to Maxine Waters and others who created these conditions with the express purpose of ending freedom and promoting socialism and nationalize the oil companies?

Or will they wake up and demand their leaders unlock America’s vast reserves of oil to drilling?

Will they demand new refineries be built?

Will they tell their elitist leaders they don’t believe in the voodoo religion of global warming?

Will they insist that nuclear power plants are built as a matter of national priority?

This is the crossroad at which we find ourselves. America can learn from its mistakes – the biggest of which is falling for the lies and propaganda of these extremist environmentalists who care less about the health of the planet than they do about controlling its population. Or America can make matters worse – and descend further into the clutches of Big Government, green on the outside, red on the inside.

Am I opposed to conservation? No.

Am I opposed to good stewardship of our natural resources? No.

Am I opposed to clean air, clean water and the reduction of toxicity in our environment? No.

I just know for a fact that freedom and free enterprise represent our best chance to achieve those goals. Socialism is anathema to all of them. It is only the end that justifies the means.

I say it’s time to drill.

I say it’s time to explore.

I say it’s time to refine.

I say it’s time to build the nuclear alternative for the future.

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