In part of what has become an all-too familiar pattern, a conscientious public servant has lost her job at the direct instigation of the Bush White House for taking her responsibilities seriously. Mary Gade, Region V EPA Administrator, tried to do what no one at the state or federal level has done for 25 years -- hold Dow Chemical Company accountable for its dioxin-soaked legacy in Michigan. Now she's had to resign her job.
Having worked with Mary Gade a few years ago on a project coordinated by the Michigan Environmental Council, I know her to care about the public trust, public health and the air and water. She's also a Republican (if a moderate one). It's clear that her willingness to enforce the laws against a recalcitrant polluter was too much for the White House.
The only good that might come out of this is another Dow-set political firestorm like the one 25 years ago that contributed to the downfall of a Reagan EPA Administrator and deputy.