Very Important News
EPA Abolished, Z Smith Takes Helm at HPA
April 1, 2017
Goodbye, EPA. Hello, HPA.
While millions of Americans are saddened by the recent closing of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) by the Trump Administration and are celebrating its 37-year legacy, there is no mourning period.
Work has begun at the new Human Protection Agency (HPA), which has hired EPA’s entire staff and is now adding thousands more workers as it tackles the work of the shuttered EPA and its essential services, the backlog of unfulfilled EPA work, as well as new initiatives.
“Freed of the burden of Congressional oversight and subservience to the interests of polluters, the Human Protection Agency will take the baton from the EPA and run with it, and probably a lot faster,” vowed Z Smith, AIA, the first head of the HPA, and formerly an architect with Eskew+Dumez+Ripple.
“The EPA did a lot, but let’s face it, it was hobbled from the start,” said Anne Hicks Harney, FAIA, the new director of HPA office of policy. “The mission of the EPA was to protect human health and the environment. Calling it the Environmental Protection Agency was therefore colossally stupid when you consider that it has to speak to everyone in order to do its work,” she said.
“We’re in the Anthropocene epoch,” said Harney, referring to the geological time period in which humans have become the dominant force in shaping the planet. “We’ve mostly just been thinking about ourselves,” she noted, but, “like the cyanobacteria whose photosynthesis converted Earth’s early oxygen-poor environment to the oxygen-rich environment in which we and other organisms thrive today, we can contribute to an environment that supports the whole community of life.”
Smith was elected to his position by the HPA board of governors, which is composed of representatives of various fenceline communities. He vowed thoughtful and effective action on his platform to end colonization of the future. “A colony is a territory controlled by a state, often without representation in decisions, treated just as a resource,” explains Smith. “We treat the future that way. The world of 2030 gets no vote, yet we control what it will be.” Smith “Live in the present,” he said. “It’s not just for Buddhists.”
The HPA staff will be bolstered by Rus Perry, FAIA, who will come out of retirement to head programs both in public protection and jazz history. “EPA has become closely associated with regulations,” noted Perry. “It’s time for a reboot: HPA will carry forward these policies but focus instead on personal and public protections, and collaborations with corporations, organizations, and everyone who sees the value in them.” Perry will also offer a weekly radio show in which “we will explore the broad sweep of the first century of jazz. We will make American groovy as hell again.”
Scott Pruitt, the EPA administrator who oversaw its dismantling, was appointed by Smith as deputy assistant for legislative affairs at the HPA. “I never realized that humans were part of the environment,” said Pruitt. “Now that I see that I can really get behind this thing.”
Not yet recognized by federal statute, the HPA’s authority has been vested in it by the 86% of the American workforce who are funding it through a voluntary, automatic paycheck deduction. The deduction was the result of a successful public campaign highlighting a simple payback calculation performed by an 8-year-old from Peoria, Illinois. She showed that clear air, clean water, a life-supporting climate, and green chemistry offers immediately positive payback for 7.125 billion humans and trillions of other species, as well as plenty of jobs everywhere.
It garnered further support when the multi-trillion-dollar climate reparations settlement with Exxon-Mobil and other fossil fuel producers was returned directly to the public via the country’s new universal basic income program.
Some citizens, especially non-taxpayers like President Donald Trump, have complained that HPA has no mandate. In a tweet, Trump stated, “Tell Z I have tremendous respect for payback. As a matter of fact, everyone thanked me so much when I told Robert Pattinson not to take back Kristen Stewart. Sad!”
Asked for comment, Smith quoted Edgar Lee Masters:
I am the mountain,
I am the sky,
I am the swallow,
I fly and fly,
I am the meadow,
I nurse the lamb,
I am the river,
I am, I am.