Fixing the environment from Davos Switzerland…absurd

I usually try to stay locally focused on this blog. But sometimes something so absurd that is related to our environment needs to be covered. As you may have heard, our planet is heating up. 97% of the climate scientists are convinced it’s due to our actions (number from Al Gore’s Climate 101 web site  Burning fossil fuels, primarily. As one wag has put it, “if 97 out of 100 engineers told you that a bridge is so bad that you shouldn’t drive over it, would you?”

We are looking and expecting our leaders, to do something about it. Last week, in Davos Switzerland, the heads of most of the major corporations in the world, along with governmental leaders, met to discuss the global situation, both economic and political. How did they get to Davos? They flew 1700 private jets. 

If anything illustrates exactly the mess we are in, it is this. The very leaders that we expect to solve this crisis, are part of the problem.

Jon Stewart covered the issue brilliantly on Friday’s Daily Show. And Al Gore gave a great speech at Davos that clearly showed the current problem in very graphic form. He also called for action, now. (you can watch it at the link below). But if the players present, can’t even be bothered to fly first class to save on fuel, don’t expect any meaningful change soon. And this weekend were the King Tides here at home, along with the warmest winter on record. Doesn’t it seem that sometimes, nothing ever meaningful happens without a major crisis that causes change to be so obvious that change has to happen? I think of World War II as a perfect metaphor. Everyone knew it was coming, and had no will to actually do the things needed to stop it. We haven’t reached that point yet (unless you live in the Philippines, Northern New Jersey Coast, or just someplace near like the Quinault Nation on the Pacific Coast, where the tribe is moving to higher ground due to the breaching of their seawall). Hmmm. Ok, so maybe we have reached that point, and it just hasn’t affect you and I personally, except in higher prices for food from drought in California, higher insurance rates for coastal residents etc. Ok. So maybe it’s not affecting us enough. 

I don’t expect the 1% at Davos to do anything of any consequence for us with all the good intentions of Mr. Gore. As Billy Frank Jr, once so eloquently spoke, after returning from Washington D.C. and meeting with the President (Obama), the Secretary of the Interior and others, “They all say they care about the issue (salmon), but no one back there is in charge. I’ll tell you who’s in charge, we are.”  And so it is.


One Response

  1. Capitalism, unrestrained by the requirements of Planetary life support systems, is guaranteed mutually assured destruction. Socially enabled capitalism is clearly a failed paradigm. Help end tax funded pollution of the commons for starters. Surely that can be get a majority, you think? I would have no problem with “capitalism” if in fact it worked for the well being of the planet first and foremost. If folks got rich proportional to the amount of “good” they did and not because of the ammount of pollution carnage, it would be a different ball game.

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