The socialized problem of this behavior — the price we all pay — is that now we expect this from our politicians, and become paranoid assuming a conspiracy or at least a hidden reason behind everything they do.
As a consequence of totalitarianism, the modern state has learned from the Anglo-American model of government: do not directly force people to do things. Instead, hammer them with waves of fear and then offer them easy but stupid answers and the tongue-wagging bovines (“useful idiots”) will lunge for it.
That way, not only to they adopt your plan, but they consider themselves part of an elite group of smart people who understand why it’s important. They then use guilt, social coercion and outright violence on their fellow citizens who disagree, and your hands are not dirty. It is fortunate for the modern state that its atomizing, depersonalizing and deconstructive behavior makes an abundance of people with damaged self-esteem who need the little uplifts that a sneering feeling of superiority provides.
All of this is background to the global warming dilemma. It’s a mess: first, the science has been tainted by ideology since its origins; second, global warming/climate change is a stand-in for the broader question of our steady consumption of our environment, leaving behind concrete wastelands; finally, the left has adopted global warming as its pet issue and used it as a means to an end, which is the left’s favorite issue: wealth redistribution, individual absolute equality/autonomy and thus, the destruction of those who have risen above or insist on hierarchy.
Unfortunately, most people do not realize that in conflicts broader than the individual, you don’t directly “fight” anything. You create a better plan and transfer activity or energy to that plan, which then vitiates the older concept. Thus the Republican right decides that global warming is bad science, and the left decides that the only solution to global warming is to implement carbon taxes on rich nations so the more populous poorer nations can get to the lifestyle level of those rich nations.
Nary a working brain in the bunch.
Prince Charles lashed out Wednesday at climate change skeptics, saying they are playing “a reckless game of roulette” with the planet’s future.
Skeptics are having a “corrosive effect” on public opinion, the British heir to the throne added.
“Their suggestion, that hundreds of scientists around the world … are somehow unconsciously biased, creates the implication that many of us are secretly conspiring to undermine and deliberately destroy the entire market-based capitalist system,” he said. – AP
For point of argument, let’s assume that global warming science is 100% correct. What then? We should find the cause and reverse it. Apparently, we’re producing a lot of these global warming gasses, most notably carbon dioxide. Looking back at elementary school science, we see that carbon dioxide is in fact a very useful chemical that allows plants to complete the photosynthetic process. We don’t want to eliminate it; we want to bring it back into line.
What might then be the easiest way to do that?
The findings confirm that trees are a useful way of offsetting greenhouse gas emissions, as their output of small amounts of methane is far outweighed by their capacity to store carbon from the atmosphere in their leaves, wood and bark.
To reach their conclusions, scientists created artificial leaves made from plant pectin and measured the methane produced when the leaves were exposed to sunlight.
They combined their results with satellite data on the leaf coverage of the Earth’s surface, ozone in the atmosphere, cloud cover, temperature, and information on sunshine levels to help work out the amount of methane produced by all plants on Earth. – Science Daily
But now we confront the real cause of our environmental catastrophe. Although driving a Hummer is pointless, it’s not Hummer drivers that are causing this problem. It’s the expansion of human civilization. Everywhere we go, we replace forests with a far lesser density of vegetation. Keep in mind that for every person in a city, we are probably using a dozen acres of land for crops, water processing, roads, hospitals, shopping malls, schools, police stations, oilfields, military bases and transportation centers. With each new person, we use more land.
Not all of this land is directly colonized. Most of it is partially colonized, like bigger versions of our lawns, where we’ve cut it up enough with fences and roads and put enough equipment on it to wreck the natural ecosystem, but we haven’t paved over it yet. However, we’ve paved over an awful lot, including the nifty concrete that reflects heat back directly. With each acre we use, there’s a lot less plant activity filtering our waste.
Neither the left nor the right wants to address this problem because all solutions inevitably clash with our fundamental value, which is that liberated individuals make their own choices and government doesn’t tell them what to do. Freedom, liberty, justice and all that. But to stop land overuse, we must end all new land use, and start giving land back.
This means we need to tell people that they cannot have some things they want. For people in the third world, who are having large families of kids with no real ability to get or retain skills, this means family control. In the first world it means that not everyone can have an SUV, or even a car, or even just walk into Wal-mart, a pet store or Best Buy and carry home whatever they can put on the credit card. It means we have to make hard choices again.
The chorus of voices begins there, screaming out the cliches so painfully obvious that they’re funny: “but who watches the watchers?” “who decides for the deciders?” and “this will lead to oppression.” It’s funny how very few of them will notice that every one of these catch-phrases appeared in several popular films the year before. The control you can’t see, touch or smell is the one that nabs you in the end. These voices will have to be silenced, whether through public debate, bribes or the third-world standby of a 7.65mm bullet to the base of the skull.
If you want to know why we haven’t all jumped at climate change, the first part is right there: the actual solutions don’t involve the buying of green products, buying of Priuses, and flying in airplanes made of recycled rice patties and powered by sewer gas. The second part is right here:
Right now, forty percent of the world’s population – more than 2.5 billion people – live in poverty, struggling to survive on less than $2 per day. The persistence of global poverty poses a challenge to the security, prosperity and values of the United States. Funding for international affairs is vital in the fight against poverty and the need to stabilize regions in conflict.
But a proposal currently circulating in Congress would eliminate much of our international affairs budget, and eliminate USAID, the United States Agency for International Development. We can’t let that happen.
Now is the most critical time – please tell Congress we won’t leave the world’s most vulnerable people behind. – Oxfam
Every now and then someone does something constructive and suggests we stop foreign aid that takes starving people, lifts their starvation long enough for them to breed twice as many people, and then laments the result with the solution being more aid. But the same chorus of voices that demands we watch the watchers comes forth with another cliche: but these are people, and they’re suffering! No one wants to let nature solve our human overpopulation issue, or face the fact that most of these people are doomed by the fact of their low native intelligence. You cannot educate someone into having a higher IQ, and in most third world nations, the expectations of their people — with the exception of a tiny elite — stop at advanced manual labor. You can’t build a real economy on that, so they will always be starving, a granular economy of near equality.
If you wonder why poverty is still with us, that is the answer. Poverty is not a condition imposed on people, but a condition from which some rise through greater personal intelligence and a society that maintains standards like rule of law, hygiene, stability and learning. It takes a long time and imposing on it the unruly third world has not worked for us so far. It must come from within, like many other good things.
The last three centuries have seen a shift away from complacent acceptance of poverty, and even contempt for poor people, to the view that society, the economy and government should be judged in part at least by their success in reducing poverty. There are a number of possible explanations for this change. Greater overall affluence in the world has probably made it harder to excuse poverty. Expanding democracy has given new political voice to poor people. And new knowledge about poverty has created the potential for more well-informed action.
The last 300 years have also seen large swings in attitudes toward markets and the state, including on the potential for effective government intervention. The post-WW2 period – the “golden age of government intervention” (Tanzi and Schuknecht 2000) – saw rising attention to a wide range of policies. The counterattack – based in some measure on economic analyses of the limitations of governmental solutions to economic problems, but also driven by an effective political mobilisation – started to gain ground in the late 1970s.
However, while the cycles of debate and reform continue, the written record does not suggest that the end of the golden age of government intervention came with a widespread diminution of interest in poverty. Indeed, the incidence of references to poverty (and inequality) followed a clear upward trend in the latter half of the 20th century and, since 1980, we have seen a steep increase in references to social policies, social protection and civil society organisations (Ravallion 2011) – no doubt (in part at least) as a reaction to rising public concerns about poverty and inequality. – NC
Originally, we did not worry about poverty. Then in the haze of wealth of the industrial revolution, we worried a great deal, because it made us look like good Christians or good secular humanists to our neighbors. Finally, we started to see our wealth balloon into obesity and our species fill every niche on the globe, consuming whatever resources they could and leaving a wasteland behind.
The left, by tying global warming to its usual agenda of punishing the successful with a wealth transfer to the less successful, will cause the population bubble to continue expanding. This is disrespect to the sanctity of life itself, which says that we should not consume our environment, nor should we recklessly produce people who have no hope of happy lives. And by so co-opting global warming as a tool for achieving its own agenda, the left has murdered it as a political issue, and humanity will not act.
Ironically, global warming is itself a product of globalization. After World War II, we abandoned colonialism as a model, but because we still needed cheap labor to make our consumer goods, we replaced it with a mercantile post-colonialism where the story goes that we’re “helping” the third world, mainly by installing our factories and paying them eighteen cents a day to work in them.
Globalism produced global warming by then funding starving populations to the point that they could explode, removing much more of our densely vegetative lands and using more fossil fuels. Now we have made a real mess, because these people have seen our first-world lifestyles, and want them for themselves as well — and won’t let anyone tell them they cannot have them.
More carbon spills into the air, more forests fall and suburbs rise, and we sit around fighting with the left over whether or not we can fight global warming by not increasing the number of impoverished people on earth. It’s almost comical, except that it could well determine our future.