The dark side

This breaks my heart a little. Just imagine that you’re a proud parent of a son or daughter who has applied to, and been accepted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), one of the most prestigious universities in the world. You would assume that your child is well on his or her way to a promising future, cemented by their eventual graduation from this storied institution. Maybe they’ll find a cure for cancer! Perhaps they’ll go to work for NASA and help build an exciting new telescope to peer into deep space!  How about a Nobel prize for new insights into DNA? The possibilities are endless.

But when I see the MIT news release (below), such achievements for these kids dims. Drastically.  

MIT Students Share Ideas About Water Conservation during Oil and Gas Processing on the Global Stage_Page_1 MIT Students Share Ideas About Water Conservation during Oil and Gas Processing on the Global Stage_Page_2

Much like a baby being snatched from its mothers arms by human traffickers, these kids are circling the maw of a much darker future. The MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI), is a sort of “hatchery” for future sell-outs, who are controlled (for lack of a better word) by the fossil fuel industry. I have written about some of these people before (Herzog, Moniz and Deutch). The strategy of “getting ’em while they’re young” and then keeping them until they can’t even find their own dentures, works wonders and has been insanely successful. If we were to track the trajectory of these three kids into their future careers, I’d put money on at least one of them going the distance and being a stalwart proponent for the oil and gas industry, much like John Deutch. And the news release above reads like Cult Recruitment 101, with visions of the students being wooed and won over to the literal dark side.

And here, oddly enough, lies the root cause of scientists and green groups’ utter failure to overcome the fossil fuel industry’s stranglehold and deep entrenchment into virtually every aspect of power and decision-making, having permeated the media, politics and government, NGO’s, think tanks and academia. The environmental movement, which easily dates back 100 years, has never been cohesive enough or sufficiently focused to even begin contemplating the more “benign” aspects of what that the fossil fuel industry does effortlessly: identify, nurture, create and then galvanize an army championing its cause (in the fossil fuel industry’s case, the “cause” being the world’s continued reliance on carbon-based energy sources).

Just try, for a moment, to even imagine a “green strategy” like that. Such environmentally-directed goals would be to identify, at an early college level, those who might make disruptive change and advocate for the responsible stewardship of planet Earth. I daresay that this concept seems almost ridiculous and, at the very least, alien; however, it is standard operating procedure for the oil and gas industry. But what does the environmental movement “sell” or have to offer? Intangibles, such as less-CO2 in the atmosphere, longer and healthier lives for fellow humans, environmental and, by extension, economic justice. In the case of the fossil fuel industry, primacy is given to a tangible product, as ignoble as it may be. It almost goes without saying that advocates of such an industry must need to do some pretty impressive emotional and intellectual gymnastics to justify their “cause.” But the truth of the matter is that the students in this MIT news release could, if they fully committed themselves to moral bankruptcy, reap sizable financial rewards throughout their lives, if they so choose. I, for one, am hoping that someone stages an intervention, with aggressive deprogramming, and redirects them to our side, before it’s too late.


  1. Oh Schatzie how well spoken… very, very important issue. Maybe you could provide the intervention!!! I know a lot of folks who would support one. It’s getting harder and harder for me to see the balance between the light side and the darkness of greed. Am hoping for an intervention!!!


    • Barbara, I feel genuinely scared for these kids. They are potentially setting themselves on the “wrong” side of history. I’m going to think about what you wrote. Big hug (as always) to one of my favorite climate warriors!


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