News - November 5, 2010

Schaminee: rage at cabinet’s nature policy

‘Enough to put heaven in a rage.’ That’s how I heard the abuses in the Catholic church described in a radio interview recently.

I went to a diocesan boarding school myself and have followed the reports of physical and mental abuse with above-average interest. Heaven in a rage! I picture angels gnashing their teeth as they peer over the edge of their clouds; I picture St. Peter rattling his keys and St. John dipping his pen in gall to start a revised version of the Apocalypse. These images briefly distract me from the facts of the matter.
Meanwhile, the government has announced spending cuts of millions of euros in subsidies for agricultural nature management and the realization of the Ecological Main Structure. The planned green corridors have been scrapped. Twenty years ago, the Nature Policy Plan of 1990 launched a series of  investments in these kinds of nature development and restoration. I compare the new cabinet's plans to forest clearance, to chopping down trees with a blunt axe, to eating away at nature from within. I picture it all in my mind's eye, but the images are not powerful enough to distract me from the facts.
Secretary of State Henk Bleker has proclaimed that everyone will have to make some sacrifices, and that nature is no exception. Let me make one last effort though: I conclude, then, that the measures have been taken reluctantly. No, even this fine word cannot evoke images with the power to distract me from the facts. My disappointment is too great. And my rage.