Global warming is a unique scientific discovery in history. It was made not by scientists but by a political body, in this instance the United Nations.
Since that organisation isn’t known for dispassionate analysis of painstakingly gathered research data, predictably grand conclusions were reached on scant, controversial and often bogus evidence.
The evidence was scant, but the subsequent expenditure in all Western, and some Eastern, countries was huge. Never in the history of human folly has so much been spent by so many on so little evidence.
As everything is these days, global warming became politicised and quasi-deified. The same people who march to ban free enterprise now timeshare with marches to ban anything other than the pre-technological sources of energy.
Government officials are rubbing their hands with glee: now they can fleece the public even more, perhaps even put a few energy companies out of business by suffocating them with taxes. Their own power will grow, and isn’t that what democracy is all about?
Now Dave has ploughed into the argument yet again, blaming the Philippines typhoon on our overuse of aerosols, under-reliance on wind farms and underpayment of tax. As Canada, Australia, Japan and quite a few others are beginning to come to their senses and relax emission laws, Dave feels he has to speak out.
If others can’t see the light, he declared, Britain will go it alone if she must. Going it alone in the sense of leaving the EU would spell an unmitigated disaster, Dave is sure about that. But when it means continuing to saddle people with extortionate taxes, our country must stand up for her principles.
That, explained Dave, is the right thing to do “even if you are less certain than the scientists” about global warming. I get it. If you’d rather not pay more into Dave’s bottomless coffers, you go against scientific consensus.
If that’s what Dave is suggesting, he’s either lying through his teeth or displaying his ignorance or, in all likelihood, both.
Most scientists, especially those who don’t depend on the UN or other similar setups for their grants, mock the whole global-warming offensive for being a purely ideological contrivance going against all available evidence. In fact there’s more evidence for global cooling than global warming (I could cite the sources, but you can find them on the net in seconds).
Yet Dave wouldn’t be held back by such trivia. Even if there’s only a 60-percent chance that typhoons are caused by not enough green taxes, he says, we must stay the course.
Statistically speaking, I’d say there’s a 100-percent chance that global warming is caused by the hot air released into the atmosphere by madcap activists and those politicians who tout their cause for personal electoral gain. Like Dave.
Those activists are fighting for the cause of global warming with the same fanaticism as their fathers (or on occasion they themselves) fought for the cause of global communism. Our technological civilisation, they scream, is poisoning the environment on ‘our planet’.
Obviously they’d rather go back to earlier times when the environment was safe from greedy capitalists. To the times when the Romans had lead plumbing, when bronze was made by adding not tin but arsenic, when primitive irrigation systems turned the once green and fertile Middle East into a desert, when slash-and-burn agriculture destroyed first forests and then fields, when millions were dying in epidemics, when London was enveloped by smog caused by low-tech industry, when people’s houses were warmed by hearths belching carcinogenic smoke.
What a wonderful world it was then. A world in which pernicious genetic modification of cereals was unheard of and people joyously starved to death in the serene knowledge that their cause was just.
Actually, Rwanda, North Korea and Haiti still feed themselves almost exclusively by organic farming so dear to our environmentalists’ hearts. They apply unimpeachable logic: when organic farming can no longer feed a growing population, the population has to be reduced. Hacking a few thousand or, if available, million with machetes is so much better for the environment than chemical fertilisers and pesticides.
Japan has a much higher population density than Haiti, but it’s in the latter that primitive technology and agriculture are depleting the soil and destroying the environment.
Everywhere you look, the conclusion is undeniable. Technological civilisation doesn’t create environmental disasters – it prevents or, as the Israelis showed in the Middle East, reverses them. And technological civilisation is fuelled by energy that isn’t generated by water, wind or human, equine and bovine muscle.
It’s the non-renewable sources of energy that are primarily responsible for consigning Malthus with his overpopulation theories to the status of a quaint museum exhibit. It’s hydrocarbons and uranium that heat our houses, produce our food, treat our diseases and carry us effortlessly around the world.
None of this has any spiritual content – it’s all crass materialism, but then most of us have a bit of that in our psychological make-up. We’d rather not freeze in the dark if we can help it, and we’d rather not pay through the nose for the privilege.
But there’s also a loudmouthed minority of revolutionaries and Luddites out there who loathe not only the newfangled materialism of the West but also its erstwhile spiritual content. They’ve succeeded in destroying the latter; now they’re after the former.
Global warming is being cannily used as religious surrogate, and the stratagem succeeds because there indeed exists a vacuum to fill. Global-warming denial has become uncool; before long it’ll become illegal.
This creates murky waters in which the likes of Dave love to fish – ethically and renewably, of course. They use shameless demagoguery as their bait, and their focus groups suggest that most people will swallow.
They may well be right. Let’s just hope we won’t suffocate in the resulting reflux.