Return my words to me
April 11, 2011 7:32 PM   Subscribe

I am looking for the text of a letter that I wrote to The Guardian in January 2008.

Over the years Metafilter has helped me to solve many tricky issues. If it succeeds with this one it will pass the acid test.
I am accumulating a file of all of my letters to the editor, which have been written in several countries, under several different names, over a period of nearly 30 years.
I was just reminded through an archive from an online discussion group that I wrote a letter to The Guardian weekend magazine in the UK in January of 2008. It was written under the name "Alan Arcadia" and had something to do with population.
If someone can deliver the text of this letter to me, I will be truly impressed and grateful.
posted by crazylegs to Writing & Language (4 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
January 12, 2008 Saturday

Congratulations to the dedicated environmental activists profiled in your 50 People Who Could Save the Planet (January 5): all of them are engaged in literally the most important work in the world. I was, however, concerned that much of the article concerned new sources of energy without questioning how that energy would be used. The discovery of a limitless source of energy would not be the solution to all of our problems, and may create problems undreamed of today. There are two common denominators of all the issues being dealt with here, including climate change, deforestation, species extinction, water shortages, pollution, and urban sprawl: they are caused by (or exacerbated by) the resource-intensive lifestyles of more than six billion human beings who are either fully industrialised or striving to be so, and their severity increases and decreases in proportion to human population. The most valuable thing an individual can do to help the planet in the long-term is to make a commitment not to reproduce.

Alan Arcadia
posted by besonders at 7:38 PM on April 11, 2011 [27 favorites]

Response by poster: wow

6 minutes

posted by crazylegs at 7:40 PM on April 11, 2011 [8 favorites]

So how did you find it?
posted by andoatnp at 1:08 PM on April 14, 2011 [2 favorites]

I can't speak to the method besonders used, but a basic search for "alan arcadia" in the two library newspaper databases I have access to both turned up this letter as the first search result.
You also had a letter under that name in The Globe and Mail on October 7, 2003, in case you didn't already have that citation.
Just from your description, sounds like a quick trip to the local library could nail a lot of this stuff down pretty easily, and I'm sure a librarian there would be happy to help.
posted by Hadroed at 5:03 PM on April 16, 2011 [1 favorite]

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