Liberals and conservatives are united by their common failure to consider the whole host of globally threatening environmental issues beyond climate change.
Owing to a technical error, the links which the author had originally wished to provide were excluded from this essay upon its first publication. They have been supplied as of 11 October, 2019, with apologies to all readers and commentators for their tardiness.
In times like these, when one is relentlessly bombarded by ever more absurd claims, whether on the non-existence of genders and races, the need for ‘whites’ to compensate for conquests made by their distant ancestors, or the dangers inherent in saying ‘hello’ to a woman, it is not only natural, but absolutely necessary to maintain a sceptical attitude – to use a euphemism – towards the news descending from the echelon of official media or ascending from the chaos of the world wide web. Every thinking person knows that the powers-that-be have taken deception to a scientific level, and that the masses, having lost their character of peoples and become amorphous conglomerates of drifting individuals, are not always capable of critical analysis.
It has become clear that even universities have lost their credibility as providers of independent information, as testified by those professors who lose their tenure or prestige for findings that do not line up with the official narrative that the powers-that-be wish to enforce as the new dogma.
Therefore to feel lost and skeptical in our day is not only understandable, but completely reasonable.
The obvious risk that such an attitude implies is, however, that one may end up disbelieving even the news and facts that are actually true, and downplaying, even ridiculing, information that is in fact of vital importance.
In no field is this more evident than in the environmental issue. The little news that filters through the official media, which is almost invariably about climate change, seems to aim at frightening the masses by conjuring up images of seas swallowing up New York City, or of polar bears desperately clinging to the last scrap of ice.
It is no wonder that such a sensationalistic, theatrical approach to the problem is either met with uncritical fanaticism or scorn and derision. The people who identify as ‘liberal’ usually accept this narrative because it provides them with an additional excuse to attack everything they hate, whether it be ‘patriarchy’ or, more reasonably, imperialism; the people who identify as ‘conservative’ usually reject this narrative because they fear that all of this climate change talk is nothing but a scam on the part of the usual suspects to levy more taxes and exercise more control.
Both approaches, however, happen to be mistaken. Yes, ‘liberals’ are correct in stating that the environmental issue is indeed extremely serious; however, climate change is just one facet of it, and not even the most vital. Yes, ‘conservatives’ are correct in stating that the usual suspects want to exploit climate change for their perceived gains; however that does not mean that climate change is not actually happening.
Let’s look at the facts objectively and disprove both the misconceptions of the ‘liberals’ and those of the ‘conservatives’.
The first necessary observation is that so-called ‘climate change’ is the current obsession of environmentalism. If one had to form an opinion based wholly on the official news, one would inevitably conclude that the CO2 we produce with our industrial activities is the one and only problem facing the planet, and that the obvious solution is to cut emissions and convert to sources of energy that are deceivingly described as ‘green’. The need to cut CO2 emissions has become such a compulsive mantra that any thinking person cannot but wonder what is the real motive behind such ostentatious good will; nor can one help but notice that the profit involved in the conversion to ‘green’ energy is staggeringly enormous, as is the amount of central control that such transition would need in order to succeed. It is no surprise that the techno-financial apparatus is using climate change as a golden opportunity, both to reap huge profits and to march even faster towards global technocratic governance. The vast environmental crisis, which the powers-that-be have chosen to reduce to the picture of rising seas, affords the perfect excuse. Extinction Rebellion, weather it be the creature or the unwitting instrument of the high echelons, seems pushing for some form of directorate that will assume control of energy sources – presumably until the crisis is over, more likely forever. Their plans should be transparent.
The mistake that the less attentive ‘conservative’ commits, however, is to conclude that climate change is therefore a concoction with no real basis, or at most that it cannot be as serious as such hypocritical, corrupt movements would have us believe. This kind of thinking by association rather than by arguments is a feature of the current political and cultural landscape, and is clearly encouraged as a powerful form of mass control.
The unfortunate reality, though, is that climate change seems to be proceeding even faster than what is officially presented. Temperature records keep being broken worldwide, and almost no day goes by without new findings forcing researchers to review previous models, which regularly turn out to be too conservative.
Any scepticism on temperature reporting is understandable yet puerile, when one considers that most of the ice remaining on the North Pole is now one meter thick or less, whereas it used to be two to five meters as recently as 2012. Greenland is melting even during the winter. For the first time in recorded history, this summer the sea off the coast of Alaska was completely ice-free, and local temperatures were higher than in Britain. Antarctica is losing 300 square km of ice every year, and the melting is increasing fast, with deep cracks fracturing glaciers into chunks the size of countries. The fertile area of Australia is getting thinner and thinner, and large numbers of cattle have to be sold or slaughtered for lack of water and forage. Half of the fertile land of Iraq has been lost to drought. In the summer of 2018 Latvia and Lithuania had to declare a state of emergency, France had to shut down four nuclear reactors to avoid overheating rivers, and the Netherlands saw the longest drought ever recorded. This past summer vast portions of the US Midwest were not replanted due to flooding. The list goes on, growing with every passing day, and yet the problem will not seem relevant to the average consumer as long as the supermarket shelves are stocked. The fact that crop yields are decreasing worldwide, also as a consequence of climate change, is unknown to most, and is even explained by some ‘conservatives’ with the bizzarre claim that, while all ice on Earth is melting and there are few glaciers left, a new ice age is approaching.
The absurdity of such claims should surprise no one, because personal motives determine human thoughts much more than facts do. Rather than facing the daunting challenge of re-organising one’s values and lifestyle, it is clearly much easier to embrace some reassuring but utterly nonsensical fairytale, such as the notion that burning 100 million barrels of oil every day doesn’t make a dent in the heat balance of the planet. Like any drug addict, the modern consumer will claim that the drug is actually good, that the more CO2 the better for the plants, despite experimental science informing us that, past some percentage, CO2 is not beneficial to plant growth at all, and that furthermore an excess of CO2 even diminishes the nutrient content in rice and other crops. Not to mention the damage that the CO2 is causing to the oceans, which have grown by now so acidic that most shellfish can no longer develop properly.
Climate change is therefore a reality, and should actually be designated with a far more effective name, such as ‘planet overheating’.
The mistake that brings together most of both ‘liberals’ and ‘conservatives’, however, is not what they believe about climate change, but their common failure to consider a whole host of other even more pressing environmental issues, as dire as they are almost unmentioned. Most ‘conservatives’ deny climate change, most ‘liberals’ are fixated with it, both choose to ignore that there is even worse in store.
It is striking to see, in a world where the interconnectivity of the economy is commonplace, how few realize the interconnectivity of living things and habitats on this planet. Modern life certainly removes man from the realities of the natural world, to the extent that many city dwellers have never seen a real hen, let alone a boar, and few stop staring at their phones to observe the workings of an ant.
But even when the complexity and interdependence of the biosphere is to some extent understood, a powerful motive makes any discussion of its ongoing devastation inconvenient: to stop and deal with the devastation we are wreaking would not reap profits for the techno-financial apparatus; it would, on the contrary, force extremely painful decisions. The choice of the powers-that-be is consequently to ignore it altogether, and they are unsurprisingly followed in this by movements like Extinction Rebellion.
Within the limits of this short essay, I will mention just a few facts that barely scratch the surface of our current multiple assaults on the planet. But before I do it is essential to note that we are not discussing predictions; we are rather registering what has already happened. This is not a hypothetical future, it is the actuality of recent and current events.
It is a marvel of the modern age that the sample of issues I am about to mention can be at the same time so evident and so disregarded: an ominous sign of how former humans, by now mostly reduced to consumers, have lost their ability to understand, even to perceive, the world they live in. I am persuaded that some will demand evidence to prove each point; and my response is that if thousands of scientific papers and pieces of news emerging daily, or even the experience of everyday life, have completely escaped the senses and attention of the enquirer, no referral to articles or publications would be helpful. Indeed in a sane world the following list should not surprise anyone, and the sobering fact that it actually does is precisely what spurs my efforts.
1) Chemical, electromagnetic, and radioactive pollution
We keep producing thousands of new chemical compounds that are alien to the natural environment, yet neither producers or consumers seem to wonder where they end up, and what their effects are. Even our sunscreen contains oxybenzone that damages aquatic life, and 750,000 tons of cigarette butts per year introduce 4,000 different toxins into the environment. Thirteen million tons of plastic end up in the oceans every year; in 2018 the Arctic Sea was found to contain 12,000 microplastic particles per litre; 90% of fish birds have plastic in their stomach, and so do the creatures in the Mariana Trench. Fracking pollutes the aquifers, 100 million barrel of fossil fuels are burned every day, and 5G is being implemented regardless of the damage it causes to cell structures.1 No technical solutions are in sight for the Fukushima reactors, which keep releasing tons of radioactive water into the Pacific every day.2
2) Ozone depletion
On the current course, this factor by itself has the potential of terminating life on Earth. Again, no prediction, but fact: the ozone layer is now already so thin that UVC radiation, the last band before X rays, has started to reach the ground.3 If you notice that the sun rays feel particularly hot and piercing on the skin, this is a fact, not an impression. Do you know what is the main cause of ozone depletion? Keep reading.
3) Deforestation and habitat destruction
Never before in history had the development of new infrastructure been as fast and on such a massive scale as in the present. What is left of tropical and boreal forests is being devastated to build new highways, railways, ports, and airports, while the top soil is being eroded or paved over. In June 2018 alone, 1,100 square km of Amazonian forest were cut clear.
Unprecedented fires are ravaging not just the Amazon, Indonesia and central Africa, but even Siberia, Canada, and Alaska.4 The trees that are still alive are burning away, and in many cases they do not regrow. Do you know why? Keep reading.
4) Oxygen decline
The oxygen content has started to decline, both in the oceans and the atmosphere, faster than the rate at which CO2 is increasing. The differential is due to a decrease in forested areas and, above all, plankton mass. The consequences of deoxygenation on humans and life in general are bound to be felt more and more.5
Currently the most destructive factor of all: in our delusional attempt to stop climate change we are intentionally injecting in the atmosphere some twenty million tons of nanoparticulate every year, through the insane global-scale operation whose academic term is ‘geoengineering’ or ‘solar radiation management’. The nanoparticulate used for geoengineering contains light-reflecting aluminium, barium, strontium, and plastic polymers that are contaminating the soil, the water, and the air, causing the die-off of insects and trees, and a dramatic increase in Alzheimer’s, autism, and other neural diseases in humans. The particulate also acts as incendiary dust that makes forest fires more severe and harder to extinguish. Most importantly, it is the major cause of the destruction of the ozone layer.
We see geoengineering in action almost every day when we look up, and are foolishly made believe we are seeing some unusual water vapour that ends up blanketing the whole sky. Our ancestors could notice the tiny movements of distant stars; we fail to realize what’s happening a few miles above our heads. Have you noticed those trails at all, Extinction Rebels? Any thoughts, Greta?
Apparently not. Nor are any other environmental agencies saying a word about geoengineering, or about any of the ongoing assaults on our planet that cannot be turned into profits for the ‘green’ industry. If it were not for the heroism of independent researchers like Dane Wigington, detailed information on geoengineering would not be propagated to the public at all.6
That we should be panicking is therefore certainly true – but certainly not about New York going under water. The few interconnected issues I randomly and inadequately mention above threaten nothing less than decimating life on Earth.7 By the time the sea rises enough to become an issue, most life may already be gone. And no, it’s not just about the photogenic polar bears or the royal penguins, whose main colony has declined 90% since the 1980s. It’s every living things everywhere, from the soil bacteria to the great whales, from the deepest ocean to the garden of your house.
Six billion trees are lost every year, and the ones that survive are mostly dying off. Have you ever stopped to observe the ill-looking leaves and the branches falling off the trees around you? No, it’s not just the trees by the parking lot. Whole forests even in inaccessible areas are essentially already dead although the trunks are still standing.
Over the last fifty years, pelagic fish have declined by 90%, terrestrial fauna over 40%, earthworms 83%, and plankton (the main source of atmospheric oxygen) 40%; we now catch one third of the fish we used to catch in the 1950s, despite going far asea; fisheries are closing down one after another. The ocean dead zones now cover 246,000 square km; most of the coral reef has gone, and toxic algae blooms are becoming widespread from Florida to the Baltic Sea. That the formerly thriving oceans are becoming stratified, oxygen-deprived toxic environments inhospitable to life is a reality experienced and known by fishermen and researchers – not by the average consumer of canned tuna and breaded cod, who is even unaware of eating microplastics along with the fish.
Meanwhile the number of insects has declined 80–90% on the whole planet, including in the few still untouched tropical forests. Have you noticed at all how few insects dirty your windscreen? No, it’s not just insecticides, and definitely not climate change. The bees that are dying by the billions are found to suffer from symptoms similar to Alzheimer’s, in likely connection to the aluminium used for geoengineering.
Not a day goes by without some officially ‘inexplicable’ animal mass die-off, whether it be aquatic mammals getting stranded on beaches, flocks of birds falling from the sky, or cattle dropping dead in the fields. Life is unmistakably being eradicated.
The fact that the average ‘liberal’ believes the official version, obsessing over climate change and sea level rise and explaining everything through that lens, should come as no surprise given the notorious naivety of the self-identified ‘Left’. But the arrogance with which the average ‘conservative’ dismisses not just the reality of climate change, but the whole multi-pronged catastrophe we are inflicting upon ourselves, is somewhat more sobering, when considering that it was historically the self-identified ‘Right’ that instituted the first environmental protections. In contrast, the modern average ‘conservative’ suspects any scientist who sounds the alarm on the ongoing disaster of being a corrupt shill directed by the powers-that-be to spread alarmist propaganda, when the reality is actually the opposite. The already exceedingly conservative studies produced by most scientific institutions are routinely watered down before being presented to the political class and the general audience. The researchers who sound the alarm actually have a hard time being heard. Professor Peter Wadhams, who has spent much of his life in the Arctic, is nowhere near a public figure and media darling. His concerns about the end of ice and his suggestions on how to try and mitigate the problem are equally ignored. Professor emeritus Guy McPherson is routinely ridiculed for his proposition that human extinction may occur in a matter of a decade. The extent to which his calculations are accurate is not the point; what is remarkable is that the average ‘conservative’ perceives such claims as outright scams. He is facilitated in this by the fact that movements like Extinction Rebellion twist the original message of the scientists in the direction favoured by the powers-that-be. Guy McPherson is a case in point: while predicting near-term human extinction, he nonetheless stresses the fact that reducing the burning of fossil fuels, dirty coal in particular, would paradoxically increase global temperatures in a matter of weeks, due to the consequent reduction of the aerosol masking effect, also known as ‘global dimming’. The gist of his message is therefore that we are in a catch-22 situation, with no clear solution in sight. Curiously enough, though, only the short-term extinction part of the message has filtered through to public attention; the part that negates the alleged salvific effect of cutting CO2 emissions is never mentioned. Why is half of his message being withheld? Obviously because converting to ‘green’ energy makes business, whereas acknowledging the complexity of the predicament does not.
But of course the average ‘liberal’ unconditionally embraces any simplistic worldview which allows him to scream in public and feel morally superior, while the average ‘conservative’ is all too happy to use such childish fanaticism to prove that environmental claims are politically motivated scams.
Besides relishing the obvious inadequacy, hypocrisy, and opacity of the environmental movements, the average modern ‘conservative’ makes up any sort of ridiculous excuses to avoid facing the evidence of the ongoing devastation. He will point out for example that we still do not know how many species there are, so that it is therefore impossible to establish what percentage is being wiped out. Assertions like this don’t seem to be embarrassed by their lack of connection with reality. By what logic should we assume that the destruction we inflict only affects the species we know, but not the ones yet undiscovered? Do the bombs dropped in a war only kill the people carrying identity cards?
Others ask how such a tiny percentage of CO2 and methane in the atmosphere can cause so much heating, while they apparently never wonder how a minuscule amount of plutonium could kill any number of people. The shocking stupidity of similar remarks makes one wonder whether the dumbing-down side-effect of the aluminium particulate used for geoengineering is already at work.
Even when the ongoing disaster is somehow acknowledged, it is usually argued that it would be impossible or undesirable to give up the comforts of industrialized life – as if it was desirable or even possible to give up the air we breathe or the land that supports plant growth. Worshippers of technology, who abound even among self-described ‘conservatives’, never question their irrational dogma that the technology of tomorrow will remedy the damages caused by the technology of today, despite the historical evidence that damages actually build up and expand, far from self-remedying.
Such loss of wisdom says a lot about the extent to which ‘conservative’ culture has steered away from actual traditional concerns towards the exclusive care for the conservation of one’s bank account.
This obviously represents a detachment from the realism of our ancestors, who knew that the soil they tilled was their ultimate wealth. By what stretch of the imagination, through what kind of self-delusion have we come to assume that we can survive the destruction of life on this planet? What mental disease brings us to regard ourselves as separate from nature, rather than a part of it? We even use the term ‘environment’ as if it was something that surrounds us, rather than the very substance we are made of.
Are we so accustomed and attached to the current techno-financial paradigm that we’ll keep destroying our habitat and ourselves to pursue imaginary numbers?
The answer to this question is, probably so. And it may be too late anyway. But if anything can still be salvaged, it will only happen if we face the dire reality rather than seeking comfort in delusions. It is high time to stop being the pawns of big business, in one way or another; it is high time to look for real facts. Dear ‘liberals’, no ‘green’ energy will save us: we don’t need new ways of repeating the same mistakes. Dear ‘conservatives’, no obstinate denial will save us either: let’s resume the wise habit of conserving that which enables us to live. The environmental issue is deadly serious – despite Greta Thunberg.