Topics: Climate Change, Economy, Green Tech
|Satellite Image of Hurricane Irma from Space, Space.com
|I saw "An Inconvenient Sequel" about a month ago. It's almost cliché to use the term "super storm," or in our case of so soon on the heels of Harvey in Texas with Irma in Florida, plural. I blogged about it. I ate popcorn. I conveniently compartmentalized its warnings until now. My apathy is we haven't changed one iota since Katrina or Rita. Cliché storms, starving polar bears, the Antarctic glacial sheet melting...we appear to be ready for football and the next chapter of the Kardashians. I am as concerned for family and friends in Florida as I was in Texas, bracing for the next cliché; before the end of hurricane season and the beginning of the winter ahead. Whether bitter or mild, it will not be "normal."
As with my advocacy of green tech (and anything tech), I can see one clear benefit for fighting climate change: employment. It more than incarceration tends to guarantee stable societies. The coal jobs that used to sacrifice human life and limb as well as a few drilling jobs for the most part are now done by robots. Europe and other countries are not letting "grass grow under their feet" technologically speaking. Chancellor Angela Merkel seems determined for Germany to occupy that well-deserved space as (now) leader of the free world will indeed be a woman...just not an American.
I follow many blogs, Stone Kettle Station being a gem. I almost titled this post with a cliché/expression Jim Wright used in this posting: "Creationists don't build starships." Neither will we, at this point in our technologically lazy history. I say lazy in the sense one does not fabricate a "science" out of whole cloth when the results of observation and experiment reported by the actual subject makes you uneasy. Advocating for it to be taught next to actual science K-12 is galling. It propels us from Democracy to Idiocracy, no suspended animation required.
We're already on a spaceship called Earth without the need to create fantastic engine drives or exotic technologies. It's power source is a fusion reactor at the center of our solar system, it likely forming some distance from here in a star cluster (and a twin sister), along with the precious metals we esteem so highly. Our ship travels space in 365.25 day increments as the system travels the Milky Way as the Milky Way traverses the existing stars, many we have not observed and only discover as we meander the Cosmos. In this sense, we're all astronauts. As such, we're on a ship with a volume, mass and density. It can only give limited supplies of fuel, food and resources. Some of us hoard resources and abuse ship supplies. To compartmentalize those resources, we demarcate ourselves as rich, poor, black, white, makers, takers, winners, losers, deserving, not deserving; human...NOT human. Eventually vessels give way to the wear-tear of Entropy. As one of the lessons of the Titanic attests, even the strongest of bows will break on blunt and obvious icebergs. Captain Ahab is cultural metaphor, known without reading Melville's long novel, a byword and proverb of obsession leading to destruction by relentless natural forces, the leviathan a phallic symbol.
To quote President Bush verbatim: "we're addicted to oil." Our world economy became global on the gold of cotton picked by slaves. Now we're beholden to the value of the dollar and OPEC futures. We would have to halt production full-stop and leave current fossil fuels in the ground, according to The Guardian: our gasoline, Vaseline, plastics, mobile phones, automotive and apparel industries aren't about to let that happen. Controlling the media to the point that an Australian billionaire and a Saudi Prince dictate the thoughts of ditto heads on a media conglomerate 21 years old such that denialism has an obvious profit motive. "Good to the last drop" was a Maxwell House tag line, and may well be our epitaph.
The passengers of the Arbella who left England in 1630 with their new charter had a great vision. They were to be an example for the rest of the world in rightful living. Future governor JOHN WINTHROP stated their purpose quite clearly: "We shall be as a city upon a hill, the eyes of all people are upon us." Source: US History
That famous line has been quoted and paraphrased by President Reagan and recently former FBI Director James Comey. Rather than that puritan and idealistic view of our percentage of humanity and rose-colored view of history, we currently behave metaphorically like the survivors of a shipwreck... on a dung heap.