If you wonder about whether to fear climate change, the first question to ask is: Who is talking about it?
The answer is politicians; but they are mere mouthpieces for the sundry activists who prod that bovine herd of office holders to do their bidding.
The activists are the miserably unhappy busybodies incapable of producing anything more substantive than vitriol and CO2; and to compensate for their lack of imagination and ability, they devote themselves to condemning all the things that everyone else does.
The big gun in their arsenal is fear; and since the collective I.Q. of the public is hardly worth boasting about, it is no surprise that the masses can be easily frightened. But don’t take my word for it. Just look at all the dumbbells driving alone in their cars while wearing face masks. Is it possible to infect yourself with the China virus? Can you get the virus by looking in a mirror? And when I wash my locally grown fruits and vegetables, how can I be sure the water I use is not infected with the China virus? What if somebody else actually touched my apples?
A few decades ago the public was sent into a fear frenzy by the same eternal harpies and jugheads who today have a front seat on the Covid Choo-Choo bandwagon. Back then Jane Q. Citizen and all her mooing friends were given
cause to fear the consumption of fat and sugar. Store shelves soon sagged with boxes and bottles of fat free foods. The truly terrified, i.e., the most gullible, eliminated all fat from their diet, to the point that their joints began squeaking and they were advised by their doctors to go home and rediscover whole milk and butter. To properly function the human body requires fat.
Fear of sugar, meanwhile, led to hundreds of millions of health semi-conscious folks becoming addicted to chemical-laden but sugar-free soft drinks. Slow-witted consumers quickly made up for the absence of sugar in their Pepsis and Coca-Colas by ingesting trainloads of Oreos, and now they are all morbidly obese. And then there was the big coffee scare, some years back, promulgated no doubt by the purveyors of tea. Suddenly coffee was deadly.
Caught with their pants down, the honchos at Maxwell House and Folgers soon rallied and put a stop to that nonsense; but not before obediently tossing the fear mongers a bone in the form of decaffeinated coffee, a niche market theretofore dominated by Sanka.
If you were alive in 1970 you may have seen the cover of “Time” magazine prophesying the imminent demise of the human race by the coming ice age. That did not work out well for the editors. Baffled then by the prospect of nothing to be afraid of, the activists waited until somebody discovered poor people in S. America cutting down trees so they could plant food crops. As a result, the prophets decreed, the seas would soon be boiling. Global warming had arrived.
Soon enough the bitter winters that followed dissuaded the shrieking alarmists from touting hot weather, and they moved on to climate change. And here we are. The climate is changing. But to the chagrin and embarrassment of the fear people, they were by way of an astounding revelation of scientific inquiry, forced to accept the news that the climate has been changing for the past several billion years.
“Yeah but,” they all chanted in unison, “we are to blame.” By we they mean you. You are the cause of all that is wrong in the natural world. Because you prefer a Chevrolet to an oxcart, and because you prefer that your house be
warm in winter and cool in summer, you are imperiling the earth. They are not; and you will never be forgiven for your part in destroying the planet. Instead you will be taxed into poverty to pay for solar farms and windmills. Thereafter, thrice daily you will be required by law to roll out your prayer mat, upon which you will kneel and grovel and beseech the heavens to bless us with eternal daylight and unending tornadic winds. After all, what good is a thousand-dollar cell phone with a dead battery?
What is patently absurd is the notion that America controls the world. For the record, it does not. I understand perfectly the desire of the activists to be heard. The root cause of their affliction is the character flaw known as self-absorption.
Ego is another word for it. But for all their self-righteous blather and bullying, neither the people of India or China are listening. Just like Americans, those people appreciate electricity and gasoline; and no amount of marches and parades sponsored by illiterate college graduates will change their minds.
For the sake of the, ahem, under-enlightened do-gooders who might be reading this, I offer another perspective. If the inhabitants of the U.S. were to suddenly vanish into CO2-laden thin air, would the Indians and the Chinese cease burning fossil fuels? Would they trade in their cars for bicycles and running shoes? I’ll give you a second to decide.
The combined population of China and India is about 37 percent of all people on earth, about three billion, give or take a few million. Conversely, the population of the U.S. is about 330-million, for a whopping 4.2 percent of the world’s people. I can already envision the old school marm dashing off to her desktop PC to do a web search about how much pollution the U.S. causes. Psst! It’s about 20-percent; to which I reply: So? China is way ahead of us, and currently operates over 1,000 coal-fired power plants. The U.S. has about 260; and China has 200 more under construction. That country also owns the world’s largest supply of coal. The school marms really should get on a solar-powered ship to China, and stage a protest rally in Peking. I’m sure they will be well received.
So, who should the activists side with? Should they continue to badger Americans; or should they venture outside their climate controlled homes in the suburbs and try to convince 95-percent of the world’s population to turn off the lights and learn to live on a diet of nuts and berries?
The U.S. is not the world. This is no doubt a staggering revelation to the retired school teachers and aging soccer moms who wave placards and demand that everyone go out and buy an electric car. They might be more surprised to learn that solar panels and batteries are made from rare earth minerals. Those minerals are dug up in Third World countries by workers, most of them children,
who if they are paid anything at all, it amounts only to slave wages. Oh! These inconvenient truths, they always get in the way of hopes and dreams.
So kneel down on your prayer mats, all ye who worship the sun. Go all in for solar energy. But what will you do when the rare earth minerals run out? The supply is finite, after all. And don’t even think about nuclear power. Just because France uses it to make 70-percent of its electricity while emitting zero amounts of CO2, there is no reason to get hysterical and start thinking rationally.
And lest you write me off as a crackpot climate change denier, please know that I am absolutely convinced that the climate is changing, as it always will. In the meantime let’s all just sit back and bide our time and await the nine-year deadline to arrive, when U.S. Rep. Sandy Cortez promises us that unless we accept the fallacies of her Green New Deal today, the human race will soon go extinct. And who knows? Maybe it will; but at least then the world will be free of activists and politicians.
Scott Muirhead is a reader who lives in Waynesville.