Tuesday, March 28, 2006


A conversation with Pete Geddes

Over the past few days, I've begun an interview with local free-market environmentalist, Pete Geddes. I've read some of his material and was fascinated by his unique take on a lot of issues, like the environment, oil, and market forces. Unfortunately the "interview" morphed into a "conversation," as I butted in with my opinion, challenged some of his statements and made a general ass out of myself. In short, it's a big mess. Well, never one to shirk publishing messes here on "4&20 blackbirds," I thought I'd go ahead and put down our conversation. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. I'll publish parts of the conversation over the next few days. I have no idea how many posts it will consume, so heads up! Today, I'll just post the introduction to the man. But before we begin, I want to thank Pete for his patience. He's been a gracious and willing participant despite my inane blathering. Anyhoo... Pete Geddes Pete Geddes is the executive vice president of the Foundation for Research on Economics and the Environment (FREE). He is responsible for developing new programs, planning and supporting FREE’s fundraising efforts, and representing FREE at special events, professional conferences, and through opinion editorials. Prior to joining FREE in 1996, Pete spent five years teaching middle school science and was a member of the senior faculty at the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS). Pete received his bachelor of science from St. Lawrence University and his master of science from the University of Montana School of Forestry where he was awarded a Gloria Barton–Wilderness Society Scholarship. He is co-editor with John Baden of “Saving a Place: Endangered Species in the 21st Century” published by Ashgate Press. He writes regular opinion editorials for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle. His writings have also appeared in the Journal of Forestry, Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, The Wall Street Journal, the Seattle Times, and on the Internet at the National Center for Policy Analysis’ Policy Digest, Tech Central Station, the Commons, and A Better World. Pete is a member of the Ecological Society of America and was a member of the executive committee of the Forest Stewardship Council’s Northern Rockies regional working group. He and his wife Julie live in Bozeman, Montana, with their three boys. You can find some of Pete’s papers at FREE’s website.
FREE is a group of free market apologists, hiding their right-wing agenda under a patina of intellectualism. Giving credence to their views is to subscribe to the "market populism" (the market is the TRUE engine of democracy)that gained credence in the go-go '90's. Shame on you for finding any of their ideas worthwhile....
Heh heh. You're right! I am a loser. He did advocate a gasoline tax...
Drat! You bastard! How dare you have the temerity to listen to someone else's viewpoint.
Worse yet, how dare touchstone solicit that viewpoint! I blame the liberal media!

God knows I don't always agree with Geddes, but I look forward to the rest of this series.
Me too. Can't come soon enough.
Geddes occasionally writes something worthwhile, but FREE strikes me as an occasionally questionable organization for a handful of reasons.

That and Geddes' reasoning, like in his minimum wage piece this morning, is sometimes based on extremely specious logic.
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