Feb 28, 2022
Rudy joins Keith, author of The Ecocentrists: A History of Radical Environmentalism for a discussion on the history of the mainstream environmental movement in the US. We discuss the term ecocentrist, the philosophy behind the environmental movement, how it led to Neo-Malthusianism as well as the critics of this philosophy like Murray Bookchin. We also discuss the Sierra Club's origins as a promoter of Nature and how it turned into an organization for the defense of Nature, its defeat around Glen Canyon Dam and how that changed the strategies and the position of environmentalism in the mid-20th century, its complicated relationship to the New Left, and why Nixon became the greatest environmental president. We then turn to RARE II and how this led to the birth of Earth First! and the slogan of No Compromises, what Earth First! was, the differing class and geographical bases of Earth First, its relationship to the indigenous movement and the figure of Judi Bari and the debate around tree spiking. We finish by discussing the disappearance of Earth First!, the rise of the Earth Liberation Front, as well as the lobby-fication of the Sierra Club.