BUSH ON THE ENVIRONMENT….Campaign strategery:

The Observer has obtained a remarkable email sent to the press secretaries of all Republican congressmen advising them what to say when questioned on the environment in the run-up to November’s election. The advice: tell them everything’s rosy.

It tells them how global warming has not been proved, air quality is ‘getting better’, the world’s forests are ‘spreading, not deadening’, oil reserves are ‘increasing, not decreasing’, and the ‘world’s water is cleaner and reaching more people’.

The global warming stuff is just the usual Bushian head-in-the-sand stuff, of course, but the part of his environmental message that I really love is the piece about how air is getting better, water is getting cleaner, etc. etc.

This is basically true, of course, but it’s largely thanks to environmental regulations passed over the past 40 years. Bush likes to act as if it just sort of magically happened and we should thank the Lord for our good luck. Oh, and let’s gut all those pesky regulations while we’re at it since the free market is evidently so good at getting industrial polluters to mend their ways.

Next up: crime is down, so let’s get all those pesky drug laws off the books!

UPDATE: Bruce Barcott has more on this subject in the New York Times Magazine today. His article is on the eye-glazing subject of “new source review,” but it’s worth reading. It’s a good example of how the Bushies stealthily managed to gut an important law that was on the verge of requiring power plants to clean up their act.