Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Idiocracy

Courtesy http://au.rottentomatoes.com/m/idiocracy/pictures/I wonder what the Americans think of Senator Fielding.

I hope they don't think we're all like him: "Yuk, yuk - y'know, humans ain't the cause of Global Warming. Its the sun."

Trying to explain the fact that we cannot keep crapping all over the planet we live on is getting chillingly like something out of a bad horror movie.

Its like Secretary for the Interior Not Sure, played here by Luke Wilson, in Mike Judge's Idiocracy, who tried to explain that "Brawn-Do" soft drink was not suitable for watering plants.

In Judge's spoof movie vision of the idiotic future, the global corporations have irrigation systems pumping their soda pop resulting in an increased stock price, even though all crops have failed. And Secretary Not Sure has the balls to stand up and say "I think plants need water."

"What? You mean we have ta use water, like out of the toilet?"

Wilson's character tries hard to explain that you need to use water for watering, not soft drink.

In the end he resorts to saying that the plants talk to him and they say they want water.

So what are the smart guys saying right now?

What does the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change say?
  • "Warming of the climate system is unequivocal."
  • "Most of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations."
Hundreds of scientists from over 100 different countries, working for 5 years to produce a single compelling report. These are the guys our governments asked to work this out and produce an answer.

Yuh, see - the problem is scientists say words like "likely".

I won't repeat what the yokels in Idiocracy have to say for this kind of scientific talk, but its not complimentary. Scientists deal in theories, hypotheses, and the scientific method - which allows for experiments to offer supporting evidence for those hypotheses.

But that doesn't sound like the kind of clear cut answer that Senator Fielding is looking for.

Lets look at the similarities between the climate change skeptics that Senator Fielding has been hob-nobbing with, and the tobacco lobby.

We now understand that cigarettes cause fatal diseases.

You know those kind of diseases? They're the ones that kill you.

Lung, throat and other cancers; cardiovascular and chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases, early aging and the list goes on.

Remember back last decade or so when the large tobacco companies were paying "researchers" and "think tanks"? These are the guys who amazingly enough came out with statements about smoking not being definitely linked to cancers, and filter cigarettes being milder.

Well, not so amazing really, when you realize that the "think tanks" were having their rent paid for them by the cigarette companies.

Big Tobacco sunk millions into fighting the public health initiatives that were being pushed through by doctors and government health agencies, to make the public aware of the dangers of these fatal products. There was even a movie about all this starring Russel Crowe - so it must be true.

Well, do you know what happened to those "think tanks" and "researchers" geared up to sew uncertainty and doubt about public health warnings against the dangerous products and activities of their corporate masters?

Guess what - they're still here, and still in business!

The Heartland Institute during the 90's received hundreds of thousands of dollars from Phillip Morris, a large tobacco company, to support its "think tank" activities drumming up "research" to counteract reports of the dangers of smoking. That's just the amounts that were documented in public records.

These days most of its funding comes from energy companies like ExxonMobil.

And guess what - its luxury gabfests for climate change skeptics including fully paid up conference stays at the Marriot Hotel in New York for politicians are more of the same tricks from their standard playbook.

And "conferences" like the one in Washington that Senator Fielding went to are just another weapon in their arsenal of Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt or FUD.

"The dangers of acting too soon...". "There is disagreement on the evidence...". "We're just not sure...". Not Sure?

But wait!

Even if the provenance of these "scientific" opinions has a cloud over it, isn't it important to look at all the opinions and evidence before the Australian Government makes up its mind on climate change policy?

Ought'nt they look at both sides?

No, no and no.

No, Senator Fielding, no they should not.

Solar flares are a red herring, and there are bound to be more fishy science to come from our friends at the think tanks.

We ought not stop and listen to the dross that you have recycled from the corporate flunkies of Exxon and other global polluters.

Not because opinions aren't important but because we have to listen to the scientists who were known to have been paid to assemble the authoritative report, the IPCC scientists who have nothing to gain, the hundreds of scientists from all over the world, who are desperately trying to save the world from the pollution being generated by the giant corporations paying to cover it up.

For just. One more. Quarterly. Profit. Report.

And another quarter.

And another after that.

The ExxonMobils are saying "We just have to run this FUD for one more year. And we rake in billions. Buy more 'scientists' - hold more 'think tanks' - just hold them off for another year!".

Each year, for billions in government incentives and subsidies, billions of dollars in profit.

Trillions of dollars worth of damage to the environment.

Oh, and just one thing - a question: do you know what the "environment" is? Here's a clue: we only have one of them. We live in it, and breathe its air. Our kids grow up in it, and play in it.

Its our world.

And "sustainability" - do you know what that is?

If you start telling your boss your Grandma died, whenever you want to get a day off work, is that sustainable?

Not sustainable means: You cannot keep doing this. Period.

That's what sustainable means, and that's what environment means.

You cannot keep spewing garbage and pollution into our air, and our water and expect to keep living here like we do.

There's been a century and change, of governments listening far too eagerly to anything these guys have to say.

We've heard all about how all that pollution pouring out of tailpipes everywhere, and those burning tire dumps, and Exxon Valdez oil slicks are not really harming the environment.

Its now really time to listen to the other side.

Step aside Senator Fielding.

Let's listen to the smart guys now.