Back-door Bush

President Bush continues to squeak through his environmentally degrading policies

Conservationists around the nation are cringing during the last days of the Bush presidency, as Dubya works to weaken federal protections for endangered species and relax rules for power plants, feedlots and other controversial projects with environmental consequences.

The president’s apparent siege on the natural environment is widespread, riling up detractors in many states.

In fact, his proposals are so disturbing that they’ve brought together an odd alliance of environmentalists and free-market organizations, such as the Competitive Enterprise Institute and Republicans for Environmental Protection, reported the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

In October, Defenders of Wildlife joined the other groups to create a joint letter advocating for a halt to Bush’s “midnight regulations.” But based on events in the interim, the message has been ignored by the White House.

In recent weeks the Bush administration paved the way to oil-shale development on 2 million acres of public land in the West. Another proposal has dissolved a 25-year rule restricting loaded weapons in national parks and wildlife refuges.