What does the title of this post mean, exactly? Simply stated, together we stand at THE most important juncture in human history. Human history. Not the history of the planet, which will carry on, in some form or another, with or without us. Like a honey badger, Earth really doesn’t give a shit what we do.
And what have we done? Basically, not much that’s been good for our mothership. Despite all the arm-waving, foot stomping, marching and letter writing, we’ve not done jack shit. The modern environmental movement, from A to Z, has utterly failed to do ANYTHING of substance to reverse the steady and alarming increase in carbon dioxide being spewed into the atmosphere since the Industrial Revolution. Failed. Completely. Let me say that again: environmentalism is a failed concept. What should replace it? How should I know! But I do know this:
1) It MUST be 100 times more extreme, even militant, than whatever you’re imagining;
2) It must NOT be polite, accommodating, deferential, apologetic, or tentative;
3) Half measures will no longer cut it;
4) Those who made this mess, allowed this mess to continue, or supported this mess IN ANY WAY must pay for what they did. Not only that, but they must NOT be allowed to take part, in ANY way whatsoever, in the solutions. And, to be clear, I’m not talking about anyone driving a car. I’m talking about those who impede change towards renewables so that the rest of us have a CHOICE;
5) Those who continue to “not understand the science,” or those who deliberately perpetuate false narratives must be silenced. They do NOT deserve polite respect or having their nonsense “heard out.” They had their chance. They blew it. Now we are all going to pay for it. They are either imbeciles or they’re faking it. Either way, marginalizing them is the LEAST harsh thing they deserve.
If you think this is extreme, you’re so far removed from the reality of our situation that I actually envy you. The truth is that what’s just around the corner is going to be so much less forgiving and less gradual than anything you can conceive of anyone doing right now.
In other words, we’re so far gone that this is more like a “Hail Mary” from Hell. And speaking of Hell, people, we need to move away from religion. Yes, I understand why we silly humans have needed “it” for thousands of years, when we didn’t know any better and the world was unexplainable and a really scary place. It’s time to turn the page on that dusty old book of whatever you want to call it. We now KNOW, for a fact, a whole lot of really important stuff about the natural world because of the sciences. And it’s pretty damn beautiful out there, in us, around us..all of it. Even the ugly stuff is achingly beautiful and complex. Enough to fill up all the places in our fragile human brains to edge out the nonsense (If you need to be reminded, please watch this short video til the end and I dare you not to cry). One of the things we now know is how to actually save ourselves from ourselves. No one, no god of any kind, is going to do that for us. The jig is, indeed, up. And if the afterworld is so damn great, then why isn’t everyone fighting and clawing their way to get into it as fast as possible….
And speaking of which, and I digress a bit, I was watching Real Time with Bill Maher. I love Bill Maher. I saw him interview Dr. Michael Mann (The Hockey Stick scientist) last night and it was almost physically painful to watch. By the time it was over, I felt like a birthday balloon that someone had popped. I can’t help but think that Maher felt the same.
First, let me say that I also love Michael Mann. I’ve read a ton of his stuff, watched countless YouTube videos of his lectures…he’s even retweeted, or “favorited” something of mine on Twitter. However, he was no easy interview for Maher. No matter how hard Bill Maher tried to get him to say something appropriately passionate, strong, damning or evocative about climate change, he just couldn’t. NOT wouldn’t. COULDN’T.
I was squirming just watching Mann’s scientific brain working itself into pretzels, trying to compel itself to just let loose. No luck.
How is this even relevant? Well, Michael Mann clearly knows how serious our situation is. The thing is, as a scientist, he is incapable of overcoming his training. He absolutely cannot just blurt out phrases such as “settled,” “it’s a fact,” “incontrovertible,” “non-negotiable,” dire, catastrophic, whatever. There are very few scientists who can communicate that kind of message, even remotely. The few who can are on TV. Neil deGrasse Tyson, Michio Kaku, Max Tegmark, Brian Greene. Maybe only Neil deGrasse Tyson would be the one who could bring himself to say, for example, “People, we are so fucked right now.” Considering how much effort, all the blood, sweat and tears, and personal cost that Bill Maher puts into scouring every situation he’s in for the opportunity to bring up climate change, I think he’d have given a year’s salary to have Michael Mann JUST SAY IT. I swear to you, he was one step away from offering Mann the keys to the kingdom if he’d just say, “WE ARE IN BIG, SERIOUS, DOO DOO, PEOPLE.”
In the end, Michael Mann kept the door cracked open just a bit to some (unspoken) solutions, implying that it wasn’t going to be too terribly ugly or unpleasant, which means he was just being kind. Such a missed opportunity for “science.” Michael Mann, who has been the Global Warming Punching Bag for years, couldn’t have been in kinder, gentler, hands than Maher’s. I needed a drink after that interview. Maher probably needed a joint.
The alarm bells are just not going to get rung by scientists, in case you haven’t figured it out yet. They cannot do it. Cannot. It’s like asking your friend to fly to the Moon on a Vespa. Ain’t gonna happen. Politicians, with the exception of Bernie Sanders and maybe five other people, are crooks and liars. No hope there. We’ve already discussed the fact that there isn’t a god swooping in at the last moment to save us, and Will Smith isn’t on the roster, either. So it’s you, and me, and your mom and your neighbor, and the kid down the street (just so long as he doesn’t go into politics), and Bill Maher. And Neil deGrasse Tyson. In fact, Tyson is badass enough to count for 20 normal people.
Thanks to an incredible movement (I’d say “environmental” movement but we already know how inadequate that would be) called Deep Green Resistance, I saw the video below, which pretty much says it all. Deep Green Resistance, by the way, is made up of a bunch of also really badass people. You can’t just “join” Deep Green Resistance. You have to read a LOT of stuff, answer questions correctly, and pay dues. They’re not messing around, which is why I love them.
This video, which is not made by them, but which they shared, makes a lot of very complicated things easy to understand. I’d say that even Senator James “Snowball Chucker” Inhofe could understand this video, but we already know that’s impossible. Unlike a smart person who does understand the science, but is paid NOT TO (like Marc Morano), James Inhofe isn’t intelligent. And he’s SO simple minded, so “black and white” in his thinking (no gray areas) that he really isn’t capable of working against his own confirmation biases. His head would probably explode. I don’t know.
Anyway, this video can be watched with subtitles provided in quite a few different languages on the website by the same name (WakeUpFreakOut.org) which is here. It runs slightly over 11 minutes, and if you’re like me, the first thing you do is look at the “time commitment” when you’re asked to watch a video. Please believe me when I say that this is worth every second. One important thing which needs defining: when they say “positive feedback loop,” that’s not a “good” thing. The general public might think that the term “positive” implies something is, well, positive. In this context, a positive feedback loop is something that enhances or amplifies changes which make a system move away from its equilibrium, causing it to be more unstable. Sort of like a tiny “wobble,” which gets worse and worse and then makes a bridge collapse.
Without further adieu: