Sunday, November 25, 2018

Environmentalist Shaming

I note the youth of those who are the most militant of the environmental lobby. Their behavior reflects their youth. They do NOT want change unless that change preserves things the way they are. If you ever had to make a move because of a new job and had teens in the house, you have heard the lamentations of kids being forced to change to a new school. It's really pitiful. And it explains why, despite some very rational arguments against the leftist position that climate must NOT change, they cling to that idea and resist any notion that their world should be any different in 50 years than it is now. I do pity them if we ever get hit by a big asteroid. Talk about ruining their world. Their instinctive reaction to those who offer an argument that contradicts the heard belief in the doctrines of the First Environmentalist Church of Gaia is, of course, to shame the nay-sayers into submission. After all, shaming works particularly well with people who desperately want to belong to the herd. And frankly, most of these young snowflakes cannot imagine anyone who doesn't want to belong to the herd and accept their shared beliefs. To live outside the herd is unimaginable to a child.

Like children, they tend to resort to some form of shaming to defend their fundamentalist environmental religion when challenged.  I recently posted this little note. Frankly I did it to get a rise out of my lefty buds from the militant environmentalist save-the-world-through socialism wing of the Democrat and Green Parties. Here's what I asked:

CO2 is what plants breathe. So why do you guys hate plants?

It was targeted at the environmentalist narrative that CO2 is bad, which seems to me a little strange. After all, an abundance of CO2 makes plants grow really really well and they, in turn, enrich the atmosphere with oxygen. It's a lovely thing. One of my friends, who I do not lump in with the fanatic progressive left as he debates with a remarkable level of fairness, commented. He objected that he didn't hate plants, it was the people cutting down the rain forests. Of course they are doing that to grow crops and grass for cattle to eat, so they don't exactly hate plants. They just want to grow more of a certain kind of plants. I pointed this out. The discussion is ongoing.

So what I find strange is that the environmentalist true-believers want to preserve dense rain forests and at the same time want to reduce the carbon dioxide gas the rain forest plants need to survive and grow well.  And, as progressives are so fond of saying when we try to end some intrusive government program, "Well, what are you going to replace our program of increased government and anti-people initiatives with if we're going to 'save' the planet."

How about nothing? The question assumes we need to "save" the planet. Okay, make polluters clean up after themselves. I can get behind that, but to return human civilization to some Luddite agrarian pre-technology human civilization would require millions of people to die off because we can't afford them. It certainly explains the progressive infatuation with abortion.

As to what you can do practically to "save" the rain forests, I don't think the environmentalist left has a good plan. Unless the forces of environmentalism plan to invade Brazil and physically stop all those indigenous peoples and their willing corporate allies and Brazilian ranchers and farmers from clearing farmland, I don't see that there's a lot they can do about it. AND if they do plant crops instead of trees, those plants will likely be CO2 breathers like the rain forest trees so it's not a total loss of biomass.

Something similar has happened in the USA. Today there are more trees in North America than there were when Columbus' started the invasion of evil white people. We fight wildfires nowadays instead of letting them burn down areas the size of states like they used to when indigenous peoples were doing forestry management. We plant trees along every street and hedges and green lawns around every house, even in places that were barren save for some barely alive dry grass before we moved in. We have crops instead of grasslands, but, hey, we're feeding people who because they eat better are now living long enough to complain because we don't go back to total wildness and do the decent thing. The "decent thing" is, of course, to go ahead and die off by the billions and reduce the surplus population (defined as mainly anyone who is not a progressive). Of course, what people that are left after the deplorables are sifted out of the populations*, will starve because progressives tend to not be a bunch of hick farmers and protesting doesn't create much in the way of food.

I'm sorry. I get started when someone takes a side track to deflect from the point - which is:

  1. A rise in CO2 levels, as science has shown, follows rather than leads periods of warming. So rising CO2 levels are likely a result of a rise in global temperatures rather than the cause of it.
  2. A rise in CO2 levels leads to an explosion of plant growth of all kinds, which leads to a rise in oxygen levels due to the plants CO2 scrubbing proclivities.
  3. As CO2 levels rise, the rain forests will thicken and spread into areas where people aren't fighting it, so Mama Nature won't be going gently into that good night.
  4. Socialism won't fix that. (See the missing Aral Sea, The Caspian and very Black Seas - thank you Soviet Union and Communist China).
  5. CO2 is good for the plants. Crops grow better, rain forests grow thicker and your houseplants are happier. God has built into the Earth some amazing automatic climate control mechanisms.
  6. That said, no one has figured out how to put a thermostat on the sun and climate temperatures rise and fall at the whim of merry old Sol. Nothing we can do about that. It's a NUCLEAR furnace 93 million miles away. And who is to say that the temperature we have now should be locked in as the one and only ideal temperature. Climate has changed a lot throughout the ages in response to many factors. Volcanoes are pretty good at blocking out sunlight and cooling things off or at pumping billions of tons of CO2 into the air. We haven't figured out a control thermostat mechanism for volcanoes yet either.
  7. No one will starve if the temps go up. I know you've heard that we'll have vast desert wastelands if temps rise just a degree or so. Well, what they don't tell you is that a few degrees rise will open up vast acres of farmland in Canada, Siberia, and northern Europe to potential cultivation. We'll just have to move around a bit to adapt, but that is why God gave us two legs and UHaul gave us rental trucks and trailers.
Just sayin'

© 2018 by Tom King

* Can you say "gulags".

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Shoveling Air - The Assault on Conservative Memes

I posted this quote by Thomas Sowell. I though it was pretty obvious what it meant, but right away one of my left-leaning friends who claims to be utterly independent took a shot at it. He objected that if you put out a fire, you have to replace it with something after all. Sowell, he said, was ignorant if he thinks we don't need to replace an extinguished fire with something.

Air! If a fire is extinguished, apparently we need to replace it with air, according to my "independent" left-leaning friend. He was particularly harsh in his criticism of Sowell's analogy.

  • Sowell is stupid. Of course you replace the fire with air. D’uh. Or is he so ignorant that he thinks air = nothing?
He missed the point and actually proves the point on a second level. Sowell's point is that WE humans don't actually have to replace the extinguished fire with air. It happens naturally. Government programs like the Affordable Care Act can be ended and don't have to be "replaced" by some government law or program. You missed Sowell's analogy. You can end Obamacare and you don't have to pass some new government program to replace it. Let the medical community and free market forces take care of "fixing" it. It's exactly like extinguishing a fire. That's all you have to do. Nothing else.

It's not like the firemen have to shovel on some air when they put out a fire. Instead, the air rushes in of its own and restores things to the their previous state. The analogy applies perfectly to the repeal of the ACA. My lefty friends always demand that we tell them what we'd replace the ACA with it if they repeal it. And I keep telling them we don't need to replace it with anything. The free market will revert to its natural state. Air had been there the whole time the fire was burning. Without it the fire cannot burn. Without the energy of free market capitalism, socialism rapidly burns out and collapses. The market returns to fill the space. The government doesn't have to do anything to replace a bad government program.

I posted this second meme and once again was pounced upon. The meme points out that if the prey is armed the predator thinks twice about attacking. My left-leaning buds pounced again, posting a picture of lions hunting down and killing a porcupine and telling me, in essence, that arming the prey does no good at all. I promptly scared up a set of videos of porcupines fending off seven lions and a leopard and escaping, leaving its attackers with noses full of quills.

Lately, it seems that any time I post a good analogy with a conservative message, the loyal opposition pounces on it and nitpicks it to death. Seems to be a new strategy. I guess they're tired of me taking apart their memes.

Someone called what is happening in our country a Cold Civil War. Indeed that's the best description I've heard for it yet. It's a Civil War all right, but it hasn't descended to a shooting war yet. I hope it never does. What we need is a Ronald Reagan to bankrupt the left and end the war.

I don't think Trump is it, but unless Jesus is coming soon, we can always hope such a leader arises.

© 2018 by Tom King

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Of Torn Down Statues and Revisionist History

The objection to politically incorrect statues in the public square is that this is an inappropriate place to have statues of "w
orld leaders....., even enemies" according to my left-leaning friends.  I'm told it's okay to have them safely tucked away in history museums where docents can 'splain to heads full of mush how evil these people were, but to have them in public without proper interpretation is, in a word, "ridiculous". 

I beg to differ.

Jefferson Davis & Woodrow Wilson are
removed from the UT Austin campus as
Republicans join in the fun and include
Democrat icon Wilson in the purge.
During my two trips to Washington DC, I enjoyed all the statues scattered around the Capital. You can't throw a cat in DC without hitting something marble or bronze. When I visited , I did find statues of some of the guys memorialized, to be of less than honorable men. But unlike my critical friends on the left, I believe public spaces should be places to preserve history. I may find Democrats like Andrew Jackson, Woodrow Wilson and Jefferson Davis to be men I do not admire, but they were a part of our history. Someone felt strongly enough about them to honor them in stone and metal. The statues scattered around New Orleans, for instance, are a part of the city's history. Without them, it's as though the city's darker history is being swept under the proverbial rug. And it is. Look, I have no problem if a neighborhood wants to erect a statue of, say, black communist activist W.E.B. DuBois. It's their business. Should I walk past such a statue, I would be reminded of what I know about him and what he did to set his people upon an unfortunate road and to negate the work of greater men like Booker T. Washington and George Washington Carver.

I'm sorry, but the Robert E. Lee statues I do not disapprove of.
Lee abhorred slavery and believed the Confederacy should have abolished it before seceding. He felt it tarnished the cause of state's rights that was ostensibly the motivation behind secession. Stonewall Jackson feld the same way.  After the war, Lee did much to heal the rift in our nation and his example led many Southerners to reject slavery as the evil it was. Lee believed that God had abandoned the Southern cause largely because of slavery. Lee is a tragic figure and his story has much to teach us about making huge mistakes and finding redemption beyond them. 

Vladimir Lenin's statue in Seattle
Sadly, this crop of kids coming up probably don't get the lesson.  The millennial generation has spent little time even lightly perusing actual history, instead drinking in alternative (socialism-driven) history by osmosis - thinking they know the truth because Marxist professors like Howard Zinn confidently assure them that the history of the past supports the eventual rise and victory of the "progressive" socialist cause - an idea that sounds great in your head if you just don't read the actual history of socialism in the 20th century.

Everyone draws from these various monuments to men and women, great and flawed, something personal and that's not always bad. When I see Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson and others, put up on pedestals by dying generations of Civil war survivors, I feel the tragedy of the Civil War in my bones. I remember how the Southern elite upper classes deceived millions as to the purpose of that war. They sold the whole "States Rights" narrative to farmers and shopkeepers who did not, nor never would own slaves and the folks Karl Marx would have called "the proletariat" fell for it hook, line and sinker. Even honorable men like Jackson and Lee who disapproved of the institution of slavery were swept along by the tide of secession against their better judgment because of a misplaced sense of loyalty and duty to their home states.

I don't think we should blot out that history lesson. Add one of those history markers to the pedestal that explains what a tragedy the whole thing was. But don't pretend the events they were a part of never happened. Don't hide the sins of the party of Nathan Bedford Forrest, James Keith, Silas Gordon, "Bloody" Bill Anderson, William Quantrill,
Henry Wirz, George Wallace, and Bull Connor.  Without such reminders, I'm afraid we're going to white-wash it all to the point where kids no longer remember how a political party and it's elite cadre of upper class Americans destroyed the lives of millions of their fellow citizens through deceit and manipulation. I WANT to be reminded of that every time I walk by one of those statues that hundreds of thousands of fools believed the lies and followed these men to their deaths and that every one believed they were doing the right thing.  Moreover, I want to remember that at one time enough people admired these men enough to build statues of them.

I need to be reminded. We all need to be reminded, because it is all happening again.

© 2018 by Tom King