Tuesday, May 2, 2017

More Bill

If he would stop feeding me these easy lines, I would find someone else to pick on. This time, in an interview on Democracy Now, Bill said: "...weekends are for fighting tyranny." Which is the essential liberal-activist slogan. And sort of how it felt here in Missoula Mt.during Saturday's People's Climate March. For a nice walk with nice people on a nice day we get a crowd of 700. But try to stop a coal train using direct action and you can expect 40, with maybe 5 willing to risk arrest. And again, all around the country, march, listen to speeches, go home. At some point all these expressions of outrage just meld into one another, into an amorphous blob of outrage. A very "dull tool" to use one of Mc Kibben's expressions.

NPR contributes to this dullness with it's special brand of "neutral, objective" climate journalism. A perfect example was the piece they did on "clean coal", or the state of carbon capture and sequestration on Monday's Morning Edition. They report that "two groups usually at odds with one another- environmentalists and coal companies- want carbon capture to succeed." Enter the "environmentalists"- Natural Resources Defense Council, Environmental Defense Fund, etc..- whose prime mission is saving capitalism from itself. They want us- the tax payers- to fund more research into CCS so coal can make a profit (the industry has already conned the government out of billions for such research, something NPR fails to mention). Also not mentioned is the fact the research to date has only confirmed the absurdity of this project. Magical thinking. But NPR loves the whole working-together-consensus-saves capitalism AND the environment narrative.

Unfortunately,the goals set in the Paris Accords of keeping warming below 2 degrees C are dependent on lots of this magic. Lots of CCS is built into their models because they have no expectation of actually cutting emissions fast enough. Of course this means millions of lives will be deliberately sacrificed for our economy and "jobs" but they will be buried far away. And we will have a wall to keep them out. And entertainment to keep them out of mind.