Progressive Discomfort With Change Extends To Climate

 

There are people in every time and every land who want to stop history in its tracks. They fear the future, mistrust the present, and invoke the security of the comfortable past which, in fact, never existed.Agreed. Let’s talk, then, about the climate and progressives’ patented discomfort with its obstinate refusal to stop changing. Kennedy spoke the above words decades before it became fashionable to believe that the Earth was in the contortions of artificial and catastrophic warming. Also yet to arrive was the nearly as fashionable (and much less profitable) conventional wisdom that preceded it: that the planet was going through artificial and catastrophic cooling. 

Like Robert Kennedy, today’s progressives are infatuated with generic “change,” but their policies suggest a deep suspicion of it. In regard to climate, Al Gore, the UN, Prince Charles, NASA, President Obama, and the Pentagon reflexively and repeatedly “invoke the security of the comfortable past which, in fact, never existed.”

This is also true of scientifically-disinterested Republicans who concede the conclusions of orthodox climate studies so fast it makes your thermometer spin. (I use the term “climate studies” instead of “climate science,” as science requires that failed hypotheses be rejected).

In regard to catastrophic climate change, I couldn’t agree more with Robert Kennedy’s statement. A climate primer: about 20,000 ago — the blink of an eye in geologic time — much of what is today the Great Lakes region of the United States was covered in a sheet of ice up to two miles thick. Fast-forward to the modern era and a young Abraham Lincoln was able to survive an Indiana winter in a lean-to. (Point this fact out to climate-change alarmists and you’ll discover how quickly they change the subject).

Liberal discomfort with with change as such can be seen in the Democrat’s impulse to cast bankrupt Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security as flies stuck in amber. As far as they’re concerned, the future of the Import-Export Bank and the Federal Reserve aren’t even up for discussion. (The notable exception to this is the progressive approach to the US Constitution, which liberals like Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg like to change every three days.

Previous generations understood that people adapted the climate, not the other way around. The notion that the climate remain as it was when Baby Boomers were children is quite possibly the most Baby-Boomer idea ever conceived.

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  1. Kay of MT Member
    Kay of MT
    @KayofMT

    Indeed!

    • #1
  2. The Scarecrow Thatcher
    The Scarecrow
    @TheScarecrow

    Nice.

    • #2
  3. RyanM Member
    RyanM
    @RyanM

    Ha! Yes, exactly.

    Very nice.

    • #3
  4. tigerlily Member
    tigerlily
    @tigerlily

    Well done Sir.

    • #4
  5. OldDan Inactive
    OldDan
    @OldDanRhody

    David Deeble:

    The notion that the climate remain as it was when Baby Boomers were children is quite possibly the most Baby-Boomer idea ever conceived.

    Well said.

    • #5
  6. I Walton Member
    I Walton
    @IWalton

    Beyond climate, the left in all its forms opposes change and always has.   Marxism was born in revolt to industrialization, the destruction and replacement of the landed elite, artisan production.  Their self image is that they support change and progress, but they support economic and political centralization to slow change and reduce new challenges.   The new challenges are always changing and the old order hasn’t been old for long.    The social change they do seem to embrace is more an extended adolescence to break the shackles of old dead moral notions they feel inhibit them, but which provide the order within which change occurs and is reconciled with the past.

    • #6
  7. Pilgrim Coolidge
    Pilgrim
    @Pilgrim

    I Walton: Beyond climate, the left in all its forms opposes change and always has.

    The left is always in favor of changes in sexual mores in the name of “liberation.”

    • #7
  8. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    If warming were the result of emissions from the glorious peoples’ factories in Oceania (and Eurasia and Eastasia), Big Brother would extol the wonders of a warmer and thus more livable planet this productive activity bestowed.

    The conspicuously exaggerated (assumed) sensitivity for CO2, and the assumed ensuing harms are not the product of science so much as the chosen weapon of socialist ideologues to achieve centralized control of all economic activity on the planet.  The “Consensus” is a shared wet dream that all governments in the developed world be bludgeoned into surrendering power to a new global elite under the whip of a fictional environmental catastrophe.

    Progressive/Socialist/Liberal ideology is an outdated, frozen-in-amber political model that was not well-suited to the 2oth century and even less so to the 21st.  Leftist notions of “change”, “progress” and “the future” always turn out to be weirdly archaic goals of a tired old ideology, not unlike a high school loser still dreaming of a kiss from the prom queen 50 years later.

    • #8
  9. Bartholomew Xerxes Ogilvie, Jr. Coolidge
    Bartholomew Xerxes Ogilvie, Jr.
    @BartholomewXerxesOgilvieJr

    I’ve been making that argument for a long time. To me, the question of whether humans cause (or contribute to) climate change is irrelevant. Climate change is inevitable; it’s going to happen. The notion that we have the power or the wisdom to affect that in any controlled way is nonsense. All we can do is adapt.

    A related question that I sometimes ask is why environmentalists get so upset about the idea of any species going extinct. Yes, there are many species that are endangered and may soon disappear. That just happens to be part of how evolution works: species disappear as their ecological niches shrink, and new species arise to occupy new niches.

    Yes, I would be sad to see the last rhinoceros or gorilla die, because I enjoy seeing them in zoos. But in real terms, big-picture-wise, the extinction of those animals would be no more tragic than that of the giant sloth, the triceratops, or those carnivorous kangaroos that used to wander Australia.

    • #9
  10. Hypatia Inactive
    Hypatia
    @Hypatia

    The only change the Left can really get behind is elimination of humans. The Green movement started out in opposition to nuclear power, not cuz it pollutes, but cuz it would be too efficient, permitting more growth and prosperity for our species. Now, the movement still seeks to deprive humans of inexpensive fuels like coal and oil, causing increasing immiseration. The real goal is not controlling earth’s temperature ( it’s ludicrous to think we can do that!) but enforcing a meager income and resource equality on our planet. With everybody eking out a cold, grey, pleasureless existence, maybe our species will stop breeding, and the earth can regress to a wild vegetative condition.

    • #10
  11. Randy Weivoda Moderator
    Randy Weivoda
    @RandyWeivoda

    David Deeble: A climate primer: about 20,000 ago — the blink of an eye in geologic time — much of what is today the Great Lakes region of the United States was covered in a sheet of ice up to two miles thick. Fast-forward to the modern era and a young Abraham Lincoln was able to survive an Indiana winter in a lean-to.

    People often speak of the Great Ice Age, when they should say the most recent one.  There have been five great ice ages, and nobody knows how many little ones.  And do you know what happens between the ice ages?  A horrible thing called global warming.  Good article, David.

    • #11
  12. David Deeble Member
    David Deeble
    @DavidDeeble

    The Scarecrow:Nice.

    Thank you, Bruce: glad you enjoyed it.

    • #12
  13. David Deeble Member
    David Deeble
    @DavidDeeble

    RyanM:Ha! Yes, exactly.

    Very nice.

    Thank you, Ryan.

    • #13
  14. David Deeble Member
    David Deeble
    @DavidDeeble

    OldDan:

    David Deeble:

    The notion that the climate remain as it was when Baby Boomers were children is quite possibly the most Baby-Boomer idea ever conceived.

    Well said.

    Thank you, Old Dan.

    • #14
  15. David Deeble Member
    David Deeble
    @DavidDeeble

    I Walton:Beyond climate, the left in all its forms opposes change and always has. Marxism was born in revolt to industrialization, the destruction and replacement of the landed elite, artisan production. Their self image is that they support change and progress, but they support economic and political centralization to slow change and reduce new challenges. The new challenges are always changing and the old order hasn’t been old for long. The social change they do seem to embrace is more an extended adolescence to break the shackles of old dead moral notions they feel inhibit them, but which provide the order within which change occurs and is reconciled with the past.

    Well said, Walton. Be my ghostwriter!

    • #15
  16. David Deeble Member
    David Deeble
    @DavidDeeble

    Randy Weivoda:

    David Deeble: A climate primer: about 20,000 ago — the blink of an eye in geologic time — much of what is today the Great Lakes region of the United States was covered in a sheet of ice up to two miles thick. Fast-forward to the modern era and a young Abraham Lincoln was able to survive an Indiana winter in a lean-to.

    People often speak of the Great Ice Age, when they should say the most recent one. There have been five great ice ages, and nobody knows how many little ones. And do you know what happens between the ice ages? A horrible thing called global warming. Good article, David.

    Thank you, Randy. And well put: it seems to me we are due for another ice age and of orthodox climate theory is correct co2 may be staving it off.

    • #16
  17. SParker Member
    SParker
    @SParker

    David Deeble: Previous generations understood that people adapted the climate, not the other way around. The notion that the climate remain as it was when Baby Boomers were children is quite possibly the most Baby-Boomer idea ever conceived.

    Actually the idea that Baby-Boomers are exceptional is the Boomer conception.  Previous generations back to Adam might have been more comfortable with the notion that lighting a fire or taking off a few clothes or moving your feet when the water reaches your ankles as the situation dictated was more practical than expending thought and effort on climate control.  But that ignores the multitude of unlucky livestock and virgins and all the other pointless sacrifices and dizzy rituals expended to do exactly that over our history.  James Frazer thought that magic is a response to a world we clearly can’t control and that magic would be replaced by science.  He probably didn’t anticipate the two would be sometimes indistinguishable.

    • #17
  18. Mark Wilson Member
    Mark Wilson
    @MarkWilson

    Your closing sentence is brilliant! It reminds me of this xkcd cartoon: https://xkcd.com/988/

    • #18
  19. Paul DeRocco Member
    Paul DeRocco
    @PaulDeRocco

    Here’s the goddess-eye view:

    https://goo.gl/maps/NKaDw7Yw95N2

    • #19

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