Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Premier Angus MacLean on the Environment

"I believe that civilizations decay when ... people lose sight of the fact that we humans are merely part of the intricate web of life, and that if we damage that web, we do so at our own peril."
-- J. Angus MacLean

Angus MacLean was one of Prince Edward Island's most successful politicians. Serving in the House of Commons from 1951-1976, including a six year term as Diefenbaker's Minister of Fisheries, he later served as premier from 1979-1981. A Progressive Conservative, he was well known for his love of the environment. Upon retiring from politics in 1982 he focused on raising sheep and farming blueberries. As he explains in his memoirs, "I still hoped to be of service to my home province and perhaps to the world outside it, but I also planned to devote much of my time to husbanding the land my ancestors had hacked out of the wilderness. My modest goal was to enhance one tiny corner of the world." (249)

I wrote my undergraduate honours paper at the University of Prince Edward Island on MacLean's provinical election campaigns. Currently I'm working on a paper with Jeremy Marks exploring Angus MacLean, conservative politics, and environmentalism. I'll post an update when that paper is available.
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