By WILLIAM M. BRINTON
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Extra resources for An Abridged History of the United States
Almost casually, he reversed the Planning Commission and two state appellate courts. For about forty years, the environment has had a long and distinguished history of surviving attacks on it by corporate America. com 40 AN ABRIDGED HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES major public utility has at one time or another has been a defendant in actions under the Clean Air Act. These companies have aggressively resisted compliance with this and other laws enacted by Congress since 1968. Almost without exception, they have lost, paying fines or being enjoined from any further violations of law.
All this complexity suggests that President Bush had an opportunity to reduce the level of conflict in 1991 but lost it by indecision. He may have been too preoccupied by the war in the Persian Gulf where actual fighting was over in February, 1991. However, Iraq's war against the Kurds continued using weapons shipped to Baghdad from the United States. Before Saddam Hussein marched into Kuwait, American weapons manufacturers asked for and obtained permits from the Bush Department of Commerce. These permits allowed the arms manufacturers to ship arms to Iraq at a time when it was being attacked by Iran in a war that ended in 1988 with no real winner.
A recent case is instructive. American Historical Association et al v. Trudy Peterson, Acting Archivist, 876 F. 1305 (DC 1995). Before leaving office, George Bush worked out an agreement with Wilson, the Archivist dealing with disclosure of certain computer-generated files. The District Court held that the Bush Wilson Agreement could not be sustained under the Presidential Records Act or Article II of the Constitution. See also Armstrong v. C. Cir. 1993). That case dealt with the status of records under the Federal Records Act.