[asa] Global warming program-in play for a quarter of a century.

From: Janice Matchett <janmatch@earthlink.net>
Date: Fri Feb 02 2007 - 14:25:51 EST

More ~ Janice

In addition to the item below, more here: http://www.americanthinker.com/

February 02, 2007 American Thinker
A Necessary Apocalypse By J.R. Dunn

             A man who ceases to believe in God does not believe in
nothing; he believes in anything. - G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

The apocalyptic vision of global warming serves a deep need of the
environmentalist credo, the dominant pseudo-religious tendency of our
age in the prosperous West.

For good or ill, human beings are constructed to believe, and faith
has its demands.. Along with the concrete elements that demand belief
(that fire burns and that it's not wise to walk off cliffs, for
example) there exists an apparent necessity for a belief in "the rock
higher than I" - a belief in a superior entity that can inspire awe
and gratitude, that can be turned to in hard times, that can act as
witness to injustice and dispenser of mercy.

Despite the claims of our current crop of militant atheists such as
Dawkins and Harris, this is not simply brain-dead foolishness.
Religious belief is hard-wired into human beings, by what means and
for what purposes we don't yet understand. (A much wiser atheist, the
O. Wilson wrote in
Human Nature that he intended to demonstrate that religious belief
played an evolutionary role and could thus be explained by Darwinism.
That was thirty years ago - if he ever succeeded, I haven't heard about it.)

When religious belief is subverted, it does not, as Chesterton
implied, simply vanish. It is almost immediately replaced by another
set of beliefs on a similar level of abstraction and serving the same
purpose. Sometimes it's an import, such as Buddhism or TM. Sometimes
it's a creed deliberately created to serve a political agenda, as we
see in Nazism and Communism. Sometimes it's the goofy SoCal
syncretism currently expressed in Wicca and Neopaganism. ("If people
seriously want to be pagans," the late Joe Myers, a Christian brother
of my acquaintance once said. "They'd become Roman Catholics.") And
sometimes they're a combination, a weird melange of ideas picked up
from various sources that (and usually not coincidentally) also serve
a political purpose. Which brings us to environmentalism.

That environmentalism is in fact a pseudo-religion goes without
saying. Like all such, it possesses every element of contemporary
legitimate belief. It has a deity, in this case the goddess Gaia, the
personification of the living Earth, (first envisioned by
<http://www.ecolo.org/lovelock/lovedeten.htm>James Lovelock, whom we
can slot in as high priest). It has its holy books, most changing
with the seasons, and most, as is true of the Bible with many
convinced Christians, utterly unread. It has its saints, its
prophets, its commandments, religious rituals (be sure to recycle
that bottle), a large gallery of sins, mortal and otherwise, and an
even larger horde of devils. (Let me pause here to sharpen a horn.)

Another item that a pseudo-religion must have is an apocalypse - and
that's what global warming is all about.

In fact, the apocalyptic is the major fulcrum of environmentalism,
the axis around which everything else turns. It's environmentalism's
major element of concern, its chief attraction, and the center of
discussion and speculation, in much the same way that some Protestant
variants of Christianity are obsessed above all with sin. So crucial
is the apocalypse to environmentalism that there has been a whole
string of them, one after the other, covering every last aspect of
the natural world. If one don't git ya, the next one will.

Green emphasis on the apocalyptic appeared early, accompanying the
introduction of mass environmental awareness itself.
Spring, published in 1962, represents the first environmentalist
scripture -- nothing other than a modern book of
Carson, a popular nature writer, was dying of cancer while writing
the book, and Silent Spring became an outlet for her rage and grief.
Carson predicted the imminent coming of a stricken world, a world
poisoned by the synthetic products of the chemical industry, in which
no birds sang and human children would not be immune. The early 60s
were marked by fears of the consequences of atmospheric nuclear
tests, and the suggestion that chemicals were just as deadly found a
willing audience.

Pollution - a word that itself bears many religious connotations --
became a byword of the era. That fact that the phenomenon encompassed
virtually every aspect of technical civilization including car
exhausts, household plastics, and power generation, guaranteed it a
good long run. Truly grotesque stories, ranging from dioxins eating
sneakers from children's feet to hushed-up epidemics of cancer, made
the rounds. None were anything more than grist for Snopes.com, and
the promised chemical doomsday never arrived. But Carson's work set
the pattern for all the environmental apocalypses to come.

The next example was overpopulation, its prophet the notorious
Ehrlich. His set of tablets was titled
Population Bomb and if anything, it was even more popular than Silent
Spring. Ehrlich's thesis was that relentlessly burgeoning population
would overstress the earth's "carrying capacity", use up all
available resources, and lead to the collapse of civilization before
the 20th century was out. The argument seemed irrefutable to those
not familiar with the
surrounding demography
(<http://cepa.newschool.edu/het/profiles/malthus.htm>Thomas Malthus
had made similar series of predictions early in the 19th century).

Countless offshoots of Ehrlich's book appeared, and overpopulation
became one of the standard ideas of the late 60s, embraced by the
counterculture, policymakers, academics, and the media. Even today,
an era in which deflating national populations are the problem, it's
by no means unusual to come across people still living in Ehrlich's
nightmare world, much the same as the Amish or Mennonites have
preserved their far more pleasant way of life into modern times.
Ehrlich became quite wealthy, and the master of his own foundation
devoted to the study of the "overpopulation threat". To this day, he
contends that his thesis is correct. The whole episode is begging for
a detailed historical study.

A variant combining aspects of both theories had a brief run in the
early to mid 70s: the doctrine of universal famine. Pollution would
poison croplands and stunt agricultural production, and
overpopulation would do the rest. The problem here was the fact that
proponents insisted that doom was imminent, with famine appearing as
early as 1975 or 1980 at the latest. The experience taught the Greens
to be a little more vague with dates.

The early 1980s saw a reprise of earlier fears of nuclear destruction
(a workable definition of an "advanced civilization" could well read
"one in which there is sufficient leisure time for large numbers of
people to worry about doomsday"). The nuclear freeze campaign,
largely engineered by the KGB, took up much of the public attention
devoted to environmental crises. But even this effort was given an
environmental gloss when scientific impresario
<http://www.cnn.com/US/9612/20/sagan/>Carl Sagan put together a road
show of "mainstream scientists" to promote the concept of a

The firestorms generated by a nuclear strike would generate smoke so
thick as to block out the sun across much of the northern hemisphere,
causing a collapse of the terrestrial ecology. Nuclear winter never
quite caught on outside of certain elite circles, in part due to
flaws in the theory. Sagan's specialty was exobiology, the study of
possible extraterrestrial life-forms, and it developed that the
climate model he'd used was based on the atmosphere of Mars, a planet
locked in an ice age for the past billion years. Nuclear winter faded
with the nuclear freeze movement. All the same, just before his death
Sagan made it known that he'd willingly accept a Nobel for his role
in preventing World War III.

Ozone depletion, the next environmentalist flurry, was a little too
esoteric to generate the uncritical devotion accorded to pollution
and overpopulation. It involved arcane chemical reactions, took place
in the stratosphere, and seemed to be confined to Antarctica.
(Although the northern hemisphere was home to the bulk of the
offending chlorofluorocarbons, the Arctic didn't seem to have the
same problem.) But ozone depletion did serve a useful Green purpose
in drawing public attention to the atmosphere, and confusing people
as to exactly what the problem was all about. (I would guess that
something like two-thirds of the people in this country believe that
ozone depletion and global warming are part of the same phenomenon.)

But in fact, global warming has actually adapted elements of all
previous environmental crazes. It holds that carbon dioxide (a
naturally-occurring compound that comprises a large portion of the
atmosphere) is a form of pollution, the same as Carson's detested
synthetic chemicals. Like that involving overpopulation, the
threatened catastrophe is universal, and implicated in everyday
practices and institutions. As with the universal famine, the effects
are concrete and horrifying, though the dates have been left vague -
'in the coming century', rather than in a year or two. As with the
nuclear freeze, the human villains are easily identified, their
actions, which place all human life in jeopardy, beyond redemption.
As with ozone depletion, mainstream scientists have a remedy - even
if it's unproven and unnecessary.

The lessons of previous environmental panics have been carefully
applied to global warming No other environmentalist program has been
prepared with such detail, purpose, and conviction. A skilled cadre
of scientists, activists, and publicists exist who have devoted
entire careers to nothing else. A vast literature has appeared
analyzing not climate as a whole, not the interactions of the entire
system, but solely and uniquely global warming. In many ways, warming
has become both more and less than an ideology: it has become an
industry, one that with such financial elements as carbon offsets can
easily support itself.

The global warming program has been in play for a quarter of a
century. It has been quite successful, convincing a small majority of
the population that such warming is in fact occurring and is caused
by manmade emissions. It is not a fad of the decade like
overpopulation or nuclear winter. Nothing, not scientific evidence,
not common sense, not the fact that much of the United States is
basking in subfreezing temperatures as I write this, will be allowed
to overturn it. The environmentalist movement has staked everything
on this program. Not for the sake of science; most of the science is
wrong or fabricated. (This week's IPCC report marks no change in this
regard.) Not for humanity; they have never cared for humanity. Not to
alter the climate itself; no such program has been suggested, and in
any case the earth's climate, an unstable planet-wide chaotic system,
will go its own way no matter what we do. But for one reason: to make
environmentalism a basic element of millennial society.

And that's where the danger arises. The problem with this type of
pseudo-religion is that they're essentially heresies, and like most
heresies far more bloodyminded than the parent religions that they
otherwise mirror. This is obvious when we examine Nazism and
communism. The same strain in environmentalism may be hidden, but
it's there. This creed has killed massive numbers and forthrightly
contemplated death on an even larger scale.

The banning of DDT in 1971 resulted in the
<http://www.cei.org/gencon/019,05534.cfm>deaths of tens of millions
of people in the developing world, most of them children, from
insect-borne diseases such as malaria. (This despite the fact that
the use of DDT to fumigate homes could have no serious effect on the
environment.) Yet no environmental group has ever made note of the
fact, and all oppose the reintroduction of DDT for any purpose. The
DDT ban places Rachel Carson in an exclusive circle shared only by
Karl Marx as a writer whose work alone caused vast amounts of human
misery. (Adolf Hitler was, of course, more man of action than writer.
It's doubtful that Mein Kampf in and of itself could have triggered
the same upheavals as Hitler's actions.)

Death on a scale beyond even Mao was something openly contemplated in
respectable circles of the cult. One byproduct of the universal
famine panic was a concept called "triage". Adapted from the
emergency medical technique in which the dying are put to one side
while the less injured receive priority treatment, triage advocates
suggested that certain "failed" nations be completely isolated from
the rest of the world to bring about a "die-off" of their "excess"
population, a process that would have resulted in the deaths of
hundreds of millions. This was not a crackpot notion; it was
presented as a serious policy issue and discussed as such in outlets
such as the New York Times and the Washington Post. The particular
"failed" nation always suggested by these people was India, one of
our epoch's economic powerhouses.

For a third example of bloodymindedness we need only mention the
environmentalist and animal rights "direct-action" groups that have
utilized terrorism, sabotage, arson, assault, everything short of
murder in their campaigns against offending companies and even
innocent third parties.

Increasingly strident rhetoric of the kind being heard from public
figures such as Heidi Cullen and even
Charles may well result in a vicious circle in which public
frustration leads to violent action leading to more frustration and
on to the inevitable climax. Up to this point, environmentalist
violence has been held in check by force of law - and only by force
of law. How long this will remain the case depends on how much power
the Greens are allowed to accrue.

True believers, a millennial creed, and easy targets - these have
always and forever made for an unholy mix. Nothing about
environmentalism suggests that it won't follow the same ugly path.

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Received on Fri Feb 2 14:26:45 2007

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