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The Inertia

Last night, I went for dinner at a neighbor’s house, came home, opened a bottle of bourbon, and watched the debates. Half way through the bottle, the debate ended. I was drunk and horrified at what just transpired. While I won’t get into it too much here, the whole thing was a shit show. Trump was a mess. Hillary was a mess. They’re both big, steaming piles of shit–but one is very clearly less steamy than the other. The choice Americans have in front of them is similar to sitting down at a table to eat. In front of them is a salad bowl full of shit or a regular bowl full of shit. They’ve got to eat a lot of shit either way, but no one in their right mind is choosing the salad bowl.

I’m not sure that Trump actually answered one question. When asked about what he’d do about the environment, he went off on a tangent about coal workers and China, then moved into steel production. Anyway, let’s get to the point. The environmental question got me thinking about the sea wall he’s proposing in County Clare, Ireland. You’ve probably heard about it. Basically, he wants to build a giant wall that protects his golf course from that pesky Mother Nature. If you haven’t heard about it, read this. Here’s an excerpt that’ll explain it:

“Back in 2012, Trump built Trump International Golf Links course in Scotland, despite the fact that it completely ruined incredibly rare dune wetland habitats. The course was built on 4000-year-old coastal sand dunes in Aberdeenshire–which, interestingly enough, were protected but the Foveran Linkes Site of Special Scientific Interest. Not only did the Scottish Natural Heritage body protest the construction, but Trump’s own ecologists deemed it to be unnecessarily destructive, according to Time Magazine. But now, a few years later, the golf course is there and the ancient dunes are not.”

So, despite the fact that everyone including his own ecologists told him he was destroying incredibly rare dune wetland habitats, and that the course was “unnecessarily destructive”, he went ahead and did it anyway. And holy shit! He wants to destroy more beach for a golf course, only this time in Ireland!”

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Doonbeg golf course.

Doonbeg golf course. Photo: Irish Examiner

For obvious reasons, people were pissed about his proposed wall. So pissed, in fact, that a petition recently circulated has nearly 100,000 signatures.  The wall, according to the petition, “would run 2.8 kilometers, reach 15 feet tall,and consist of 200,000 tons of rock dumped in a sensitive coastal sand dune system. Doughmore beach is one of western Ireland’s most consistent beach breaks and widely popular with a deep community of surfers and beachgoers. Construction of this seawall will destroy the sand dune habitat, restrict public access to the beach, negatively impact the quality of the surfing waves, and ultimately result in beach loss.”

The Environmental Manager at Surfrider Foundation Europe said it best: “He should move the golf course. You can’t move the beach,” he explained. “It will be built on a public beach. If he builds the wall, it will destroy the surf, it will destroy the beach, the eco-system.”

Many in the community aren’t all that miffed, though–the wall would protect one of Trump’s nearby resorts which offers employment to locals. Surfers, of course, don’t agree. “It’s so important that we stand up for nature and not get bullied by business,” said Fergal Smith to the Irish Examiner. “We must respect nature and have to learn to work with it, not just impose what some humans want. We are at a time in history where we can no longer watch money be more important than the environment.”

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