Posts Tagged ‘Environmentalism’

Hypocrisy files: Leonardo DiCaprio

May 2, 2015

I am always amazed at how the hypocrisy of the rich, the famous, the politically correct and all those who believe they can dictate how others behave is glossed over. I used to think that being “two-faced” or “speaking with a forked tongue” was about as low as it was possible to get. But I hadn’t realised then that being a hypocrite was a fundamental human right.

“Do as I say (not as I do)”. “I know better what is best for you”. “It is for your own good”. “It’s for the common good”. “It’s what the majority wants”.

Di Caprio, he of the “Titanic”, is a high-school dropout but fancies himself as an environmental activist. He gets invited by fawning “groupies” to give evidence to the UN on environmental matters.

BUT

Showbiz411:

Leonardo DiCaprio with his friends and family used the private Sony jet to fly back and forth Los Angeles to New York last year as if it were a yellow taxi.

Amy Pascal approved hundreds of thousands of dollars to ferry Leo, his mother, his manager, his manager’s brother, and Leo’s posse pals in and out of New York. They left a carbon footprint the size of Godzilla’s left foot.

Leo also got the Sony jet to fly from Las Vegas to Los Angeles for $12,000. The flight lasts 1 hour. (Actually $26,000 round trip.)

The irony is that Leo does not make movies for Sony Pictures. His films have almost all been with Warner Bros., Paramount, and Miramax/Weinstein. His current film, “The Revenant,” is with Fox. Sony wanted him to play Steve Jobs in a film that never came to be. Michael Fassbender is playing Jobs at Universal.

The other irony is that DiCaprio waxes on and on about the environment. His whole gang could have gotten on a JetBlue flight for considerably less. And they would have had TV and extra legroom.

Sony emails regarding billing approvals for different trips in amounts including $59,000; $37,206; and $63,600. The trips include catering and ground transportation.

Advertisements

Better to build a roof than to try and stop the rain (or the sun)

June 16, 2013

Climate change is happening.

Of course it is. When was it ever not so?

It will be cooling at times and warming at others but for around 85% of all the time humans have been around we have lived in glacial conditions. Interglacials are the exceptions and not the rule. Yet humans have thrived. Not just by surviving the glacial times but by continuing to develop even during the glacials, Wasting time and energy and vast sums of money on trying to curb the emissions of carbon dioxide has been a blight on development for the last 3 decades. Just in Europe it has come at the expense of around 15 million jobs.

It essentially panders to the political and religious idea that “human development is inherently bad”. In that sense the “Green Movement” and the subsequent growth of enviro-fascism have taken the place of Marxist ideology. They have filled the vacuum left behind as the fall of Communism has spread. They didn’t begin that way. As local movements to clean up air and water and our immediate environments they performed a timely, neccessary and very useful function. But then they became ambitious. Local movements were hijacked by the marxists without a home. Former marxists in non-Communist countries needed a cause. They remained disaffected and had to find a new home. They now had to go Global. Local causes which were the strength of environmentalism were replaced by Global causes.  Global causes were manufactured by inventing impending global catastrophes. All the disaster scenarios had to have growth and development (and by inference – capitalism) as the culprit. Not in Russia or China or other former Communist countries where they were too busy becoming entrepreneurs. And so the carbon dioxide myth took hold and and fossil fuels became the whipping boy.

This interglacial will end.

Fossil fuels and their continued and increased use (and there is enough gas for at least 1000 years) will be critical for human development as and when the next glacial comes along. It is only by adapting to whatever climate change occurs  – not by trying to stop climate change – that the human condition will continue to improve.

It is better to build a roof than to try and stop the rain or the sunshine. But the global warming hierarchy will continue their posturing and their futile dances to try and control the climate.

Montreal Gazette:

Adapting to – not just fighting – climate change is taking the heat out of global warming talk

Efforts to curb global warming have quietly shifted as greenhouse gases inexorably rise.

The conversation is no longer solely about how to save the planet by cutting carbon emissions. It’s becoming more about how to save ourselves from the warming planet’s wild weather.

It was Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s announcement last week of an ambitious plan to stave off New York City’s rising seas with flood gates, levees and more that brought this transition into full focus.

After years of losing the fight against rising global emissions of heat-trapping gases, governments around the world are emphasizing what a U.N. Foundation scientific report calls “managing the unavoidable.”

It’s called adaptation and it’s about as sexy but as necessary as insurance, experts say.

It’s also a message that once was taboo among climate activists such as former Vice-President Al Gore. …… 

…. Now officials are merging efforts by emergency managers to prepare for natural disasters with those of officials focused on climate change. That greatly lessens the political debate about human-caused global warming, said University of Colorado science and disaster policy professor Roger Pielke Jr.

It also makes the issue more local than national or international.

“If you keep the discussion focused on impacts … I think it’s pretty easy to get people from all political persuasions,” said Pielke, who often has clashed with environmentalists over global warming. “It’s insurance. The good news is that we know insurance is going to pay off again.” ….. 

And even from New Zealand comes a commentary that when “even the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand is no longer beating the drum. That’s when you know the cause is dead”.

National Business Review:

Global warming ends with a whimper

It’s a good news column today: the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand has seriously down-rated the worry about global warming. That’s one less thing that need make us miserable.

The down rating is huge. Green co-leader Russel Norman in his speech to this month’s annual conference never once mentioned global warming. He busied himself instead taking potshots at John Key and the late Sir Robert Muldoon.

The Green Party did have a climate change conference the following week but Mr Norman’s keynote speech lacked any of the usual end-of-world prophecy and knee-jerk call to de-industrialise. His concern was the pedestrian one that New Zealand is failing to meet its international obligations.

There was no hellfire and no brimstone.

When Jeanette Fitzsimons was co-leader global warming was the greatest-ever threat to the planet. It dwarfed all other environmental worries. It was the granddaddy of them all. Global warming threatened to destroy the biosphere and Ms Fitzsimons was forever calling an urgent and radical reduction in the burning of fossil fuels. …… 

….. But the shift on global warming with the Greens is significant. We are safe in concluding that they no longer regard global warming as the greatest threat to the planet. It would, I think, merit a mention in a leader’s annual speech to the Greens if it were. A fast-approaching environmental armageddon would be top of mind, not the constitutionality of parliamentary legislation, and not Peter Dunne’s emails.

So, hallelujah. The polar bears can continue to float about on their ice floes, millions of environmental refugees won’t wash up on our shores, malaria won’t be making an unwanted appearance in New Zealand any time soon, our beachfront properties are safe and there is no need to feel guilty driving past that bus stop.

It was always going to end with a whimper, not a bang. The scare was so big, so dominating, so accepted, that it could not be sustained. Unless, of course, it was true. It’s now not possible to maintain the huff and puff that the media and politics need to keep the headlines running. …..

……. They have been the first to shut up about it. The argument is no longer that global warming has “paused” for 17 years but rather that even the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand is no longer beating the drum. That’s when you know the cause is dead.

After all, Mr Norman was still backing Marxism-Leninism long after Mikhail Gorbachev had given up on it. 

 

The Luddite shades of Green

August 5, 2012

 

The Leader of the Luddites, engraving of 1812: Wikipedia

This editorial in The Australian about shale gas got me to wondering how it has come to pass that what were once very laudable anti-pollution goals have morphed  into an anti-technology and essentially anti-human movement. Luddites have always been among us and always need – and have always needed – a cloak of righteousness under which to operate. The current demonisation of technological advance has its roots – I think – in the politicisation of the concern for “the environment” which probably began in the 1960’s. As long as “environmentalism” focused on improvement of local conditions it did much good. It has contributed much to the clean-up of air and water pollution which had resulted from the speed of industrialisation. While industrialisation and technological development were necessary for growth and to ensure that humans could put food on their tables, the drive against pollution did much to improve their quality of life. But then the Luddites – who have always been around – “found” evironmentalism. The destructive forces had found a new righteous cover – this time coloured green. Politicisation and globalisation have now transformed what was once a relatively simple anti-pollution campaign focused on improving the quality of life for humans into something else – a fanatical movement with religious overtones. A coercive, destructive, backward-looking, anti-development, anti-human Green Monster.

The Green movement has become the cloak under which modern Luddites can hide and operate.

The Australian:

POLITICAL parties preoccupied with environmental protection, including the Greens, should take on board the benefits of breakthrough technology that is already allowing easier access to shale gas in the US.

As environment editor Graham Lloyd reports today, with 250 years’ worth of gas reserves now in play, the shale revolution is cutting power costs and carbon emissions and increasing energy supplies. In the longer term, it promises energy security, export earnings and stability as the West’s dependence on Middle East oil diminishes.

The unexpected emergence of shale, foreseen by very few four or five years ago, underlines the folly of governments trying to “pick winners” by investing in various forms of renewable energy, such as wind and solar power, which will only be viable on a large scale if technology improves.

Too little attention has been paid to Australia’s vast shale reserves, which are potentially far bigger than coal-seam gas. Apart from the volume of water needed to access it, shale poses fewer environmental problems than coal-seam gas. The geological formations are more stable and located in more remote areas. Given the reluctance of our politicians to pursue nuclear power, shale has the potential to be an important energy source for decades.

OED:

Luddite – In modern usage, “Luddite” is a term describing those opposed to industrialisation, automation, computerisation or new technologies in general

Greenie – a person who campaigns for protection of the environment

the environment – the surroundings or conditions in which a person, animal, or plant lives or operates; the natural world, as a whole or in a particular geographical area, especially as affected by human activity

 

Conservation movement’s focus is anachronistic and counterproductive – Peter Kareiva, Chief Scientist of the The Nature Conservancy.

April 4, 2012

The environmental and conservation movements lost their way when they moved to imposing their vision of the world onto others by fashioning people rather than fashioning a world to suit the needs of people. They started – in a formal sense – perhaps 60 – 70 years ago with the best of motives but became heavily politicised through the 80’s and since then have been more concerned about moulding people to fit their world view rather than serving the needs of human development. The environment – in some idealised and pristine form – even without man has been priorotised instead of being the surroundings to meet the needs of humans.  Biodiversity has been made into a false god and human development has been condemned as a demon. Alarmism has been used as the vehicle for imposing change.

An article in Breakthrough Journal is causing a few waves. This essay is full of “common sense” but what makes it noteworthy is that its authors – Peter Kareiva, Robert Lalasz and Michelle Marvier – are all senior figures in The Nature Conservancy. Common sense from the environmental and conservations “movements” has been sadly absent in recent times.The essay is posted at the Breakthrough Journal and the Journal’s publicity states:

 “By its own measures, conservation is failing. Biodiversity on Earth continues its rapid decline. We continue to lose forests in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. There are so few wild tigers and apes that they will be lost forever if current trends continue. Simply put, we are losing many more special places and species than we’re saving.”

So begins a searing indictment by the unlikeliest of sources: Peter Kareiva, chief scientist of The Nature Conservancy, the world’s largest conservation organization. …. Conservationists need to work with development, not condemn it as leading to the end of nature. In truth, nature’s resilience has been overlooked, its fragility “grossly overstated.” Areas blasted by nuclear radiation are bio-diverse. Forest cover is rising in the Northern Hemisphere even as it declines globally. …. 
And it’s time to stop prioritizing being alone over being with others.

The essay itself is well worth reading and selected extracts are reproduced below:

(more…)

A lack of courage in environmentalism today

April 20, 2011
Blue Marble composite images generated by NASA...

Image via Wikipedia

In the style of E Belfort Bax in his book “Courage” from 1890 I take courage to be “the subordination of fear to purpose”.  On this line connecting fear and actions then cowardice is when fears dominate the actions and “purpose” is subordinated.

Once upon a time, the environmentalists were a courageous lot and were surely instrumental in the cleaning up of many areas from the effects of real pollution (smoke, dust, wastes, sulphur dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitrous oxides, food additives …..). But the simple virtues of keeping things clean and preventing disease and improving the standard of living for humans has given way to the more pompous and pretentious goals of preventing global warming (an unbridled arrogance), of maintaining bio-diversity (and why is this important?) and of preserving “scarce resources due to the “limits to growth” (with scare scenarios of “peak” oil, “peak” coal, food shortages, water shortages, metal shortages  and so on). The environmental movement has become a mish-mash of “do-gooders”, amateur scientists and cult members whose primary weapon has become an imposition of draconian measures for uncertain goals. A sort of eco-fascism.

These goals have even become an acceptable political line and have led to what can only be called the politics of alarmism where fears – and most are imaginary fears – dominate all actions. These fears can never be disproved because they always lie a few generation in the future. But they lead to a world where the emphasis has shifted to telling people what not to do (ostensibly for their own good) because of some fear or the other  rather than to having goals for the uplifting of living standards and the actions to be taken in spite of the fears that may exist.

Inevitably the politics of alarmism are accompanied by the opportunists whose greed leads to all the scams surrounding environmental subsidies for renewable power or for carbon trading. But similar scams would appear with any line of politics and I don’t think that the environmental scamsters are any worse than the real estate bubble developers or the sub-prime mortgage supporters or the inside traders or the operators of Ponzi schemes. These scams just reflect the state of ethics that prevail and are not particularly tied to any specific politics.

But I find it a pity that the simple goals of cleaning up the world we live in has given way to the environmentalism of today which generates the politics of alarmism – which is not just a political line without courage – but actually becomes a line of cowardice when it seeks to impose limitations on what others  may not do.

Related: “The Red Badge of Courage” in Essence of a Manager

The 10:10 video and ecofascism

October 2, 2010

I find the entire 10.10 campaign infantile but still feel I have to address their (at best) stupid video.

That this puerile video was castigated soundly (as for example at WUWT) is only right and proper. That infantile humour – when indulged in by infants – has a place in comedy is not in doubt. But what is much more disturbing in my opinion is that in this case – and in these times – it is being used to cloak the message that terror and mayhem and execution are acceptable to eliminate dissent.

The apology by the 10.10 campaign is not much of an apology and is more in the way of an attack on those who did not find it funny Many people found the resulting film extremely funny, but unfortunately some didn’t …”. They continue that “We won’t be making any attempt to censor or remove other versions currently in circulation on the internet”.

No? Presumably because they feel their message is fundamentally sound — it is just that the “some” who didn’t find it funny are reacting disproportionately !

The campaign denied that the withdrawal was planned from the beginning as a publicity stunt. I also found Monty Python and Blackadder extremely funny but this is something entirely different. This video is insidious in that it supports the creation of an atmosphere in which the ecofascism creed can flourish under the cloak of “humour”:

An ecocatastrophe is taking place on earth and therefore discipline, prohibition, enforcement and oppression must be used on dissenters. They must be sent to the mountains for “re-education” in eco-gulags or eliminated. The sole glimmer of hope lies in a centralised government and the tireless control of citizens.

The video is puerile — but so is the entire juvenile, misguided and meaningless 10:10 campaign which seems to be little more than an easy, painless way for “privileged brats” to salve their consciences.

Low carbon meals


%d bloggers like this: