Carole King, Enviro-Mathematician

While Hollywood only rarely (and often by accident) produces something worthy, at least they’re always good for a laugh.

On today’s edition of Morning Joe, the pop culture guest du jour was Carole King, prolific and famous songwriter for Hollywood’s golden music days.  Now the NewsBusters readers of greater life experience may initially have a “Don’t Bring Me Down” reaction – until one gets to this quote:
I want them to learn that they’re there, and that they [wilderness in the United States] need to be protected in the future, because we have about 97 percent of our American land is developed.  And the number, that three percent keeps dwindling, dwindling.  We’ve got to keep our national parks in our minds as we go to protect new wilderness – which, new wilderness is really preserving the status quo.  It’s a new designation, same old God-given land.
First of all, one highly doubts that conservatives would argue that wilderness must needs be preserved.  There are many conservatives who enjoy a "pleasant valley (on) Sunday."  It’s not as if crazed right-wingers want to pave over Yellowstone for another Wal-Mart.  That said, there’s something very, very off about King’s numbers.

The 97% statistic raised a rather large flag in my mind, so I went to the U.S. National Park Service website to find out how much land is contained in that system.  As it turns out, the National Park System contains 3.6% of the United States’ land.  Which, of course, means that in King’s estimation, all those American lands not under the direct supervision of the National Park System is developed, even though the figure leaves out state, regional, and local parks, not to mention farms, ranches, grazing pastures, and private game or wildlife reserves.  That's quite a loco notion.

So while in most cases, such a statistical contortion would bring both wrath and scorn from one’s detractors (something along the lines of “go away little girl," perhaps?), this just serves as a reminder of the thoughtless liberalism in Hollywood.  King is simply another celebrity with a liberal cause, a cautionary tale in Hollywood indoctrination gone wild.