The Greening of Arnie S. - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
The Greening of Arnie S.
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Republicans gather this weekend in Los Angeles for the country club coronation of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Will any notice that the former Mr. Universe emperor still has no clothes on? The more one examines the Schwarzenegger campaign, the more nakedly liberal it appears.

It appears that the circle of liberal advisers around Schwarzenegger is not contracting but growing wider by the day. Robert Kennedy Jr., a wild-eyed left-wing environmentalist, is “advising him on strategy,” reported the Los Angeles Times this week in a piece entitled “Schwarzenegger is the GOP’s Green Candidate.” Even the Times can put two and two together, observing that “on a variety of environmental issues in California, Schwarzenegger’s views are closer to those of liberal rivals” than to Tom McClintock’s.

Trimming his sails to the winds of political correctness as usual, Schwarzenegger is “talking about retrofitting his Hummer to run on clean-burning hydrogen,” reports the Times. More seriously, the “film star is crafting a set of positions at odds with the Bush administration on a broad range of issues, from logging in the Sierra Nevada to controlling greenhouse gases from cars and trucks.”

Schwarzenegger’s campaign has “outlined a program to cut air pollution by 50% before the end of the decade, in part by paying people to junk older, heavily polluting cars, and by creating a network of hydrogen refueling stations throughout California, to encourage use of the alternative fuel,” according to the Times. Who outlined this program? “It was fashioned with the help of advisors brought in by Robert Kennedy,” says the Times.

No wonder John F. Kennedy’s sister Eunice can loudly endorse Schwarzenegger. The Kennedys have often given unsolicited liberal advice to the GOP, now their liberal counsel is sought.

Not mentioned in the Times story on Schwarzenegger’s environmentalism is another flaky left-wing adviser to him on Green issues — Democrat Bonnie Reiss. The California Political Review website reports that Reiss “has long been an influential, highly effective leader of Hollywood’s left-wing environmentalists, working with Norman Lear before forming her own organization promoting a broadly anti-market, anti-private property political agenda.”

Reiss also comes from the Kennedy circle. “She worked for U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy’s 1980 presidential campaign before moving to Southern California to specialize in entertainment law,” reports California Political Review. She belonged to the Environmental Media Association “founded by Norman Lear, a group that worked to insert pro-‘Green’ messages into mainstream television programs and movies.”

Reiss is the founder of an oddball outfit called Earth Communications Office (ECO). Associated Press reported in 1991 that “because of ECO, ‘Designing Women’ created an episode about using cloth diapers, Michael Douglas is producing a movie about toxic waste, ‘L.A. Law’ addressed animal rights, ‘Murphy Brown’ took on recycling, and Barbra Streisand included an environmental message in her latest album.”

“We have only ten years left to do something,” gasped Reiss when ECO was founded.

In the July issue of Sierra, an article titled “Green Glitterati: Celebrities give props to the environment” calls ECO “another Hollywood green group … founded in 1989 by entertainment attorney Bonnie Reiss, who discovered that many of the biggest stars were willing to bring some high gloss to the realm of the tree- hugger,” reports California Political Review.

According to Sierra, Reiss’s group “made its mark with emotional public-service announcements shown before the main features in movie theaters all over the globe. Footage of pristine waters, roiling clouds, leaping dolphins, and time-lapsed sunsets with Willie Nelson singing ‘What a Wonderful World’ as soundtrack encouraged viewers to ‘reduce, reuse, and recycle.'”

We knew Schwarzenegger recruited tax-hiking advisers. Now we know he has tree-hugging ones too. Both foreshadow an anti-business Schwarzenegger governorship. Before the country club elite bamboozle Republicans into crowning Schwarzenegger, the rank-and-file should ask themselves: Did we register with the Republican Party to spread Kennedy liberalism or stop it?

George Neumayr
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George Neumayr, a senior editor at The American Spectator, is author most recently of The Biden Deception: Moderate, Opportunist, or the Democrats' Crypto-Socialist?
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