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"In fact, we have always needed distinctly local arts of poetry, storytelling, painting, and music in America, just as we have always needed distinctly local arts of agriculture, fishing, and forestry. Without such rootedness in locality, considerately adapted to local conditions, we get what we now have: a country half destroyed, toxic, eroded, and in every way abused...a deluded people tricked out in gauds without traditions of any kind to give them character; a politics of expediency dictated by the wealthy; a disintegrating economy founded upon fantasy fraud and ecological ruin."
"But to destroy the earth is to destroy all the possibilities of the earth, among them the possibility of recovery. The land destroyed by strip mining is destroyed forever; it will never be what it would have become if left alone. Such destruction—which can now be accomplished on a vast scale by a few men in a short time—makes man a parasite upon the source of his life; it implicates him in the death of the earth, the destruction of his meanings. Those men who send the bulldozer blades into the mountainsides bear the awesome burden of responsibility for an act that no one can fully comprehend, much less justify".