The Nose Knows

Comedian David Brenner once quipped that perhaps the best way to deal with air pollution might be to let it continue unabated so that eventually the particles would all get so big they would simple no longer fit up our noses.

I have been wondering if all the ink expended of late criticizing environmentalists over their reaction to last year’s “New York Times” series by Keith Schneider isn’t just a big smokescreen that might lead us to such a conclusion. Schneider had made the argument that—in a nutshell—we are throwing way too much money at toxic waste sites and other problems go begging. Many environmental groups and journalists took issue; subsequently “Garbage” magazine and other journals went out on a limb, saying that the dissenters were wrong to object so loudly to Mr. Schneider’s not-so-familiar take on these issues.