Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Going Postal? Not..quite..yet...

I figured I'd do a quick followup to the last journal entry. For some reason, my girlfriend reads my musings, and on occasion, she has commented that, considering how nice of guy I am, where does all the venom come from? 

Venom? I'm trying to be smart and funny here you bitch! 

And sometimes smart and funny crosses over into dangerous territory (oops, like probably in that last sentence). But you know, I've always tried to maintain a No Sacred Cows rule in my attempts at humor, and so there you go.

But now let's say there is someone out there that read the prior entry, and they say, "Geez, John. I'm a climate skeptic. Way to go with the diplomatic approach by calling me a dangerously stupid asshole! Way to provide a reasoned rebuttal that will convince me otherwise". 

To which I reply, "Oh, shut the fuck up, you whiner". 

But hey, some of my best friends are climate skeptics, and I regularly call them dangerously stupid assholes. Actually, far worse stuff than that depending upon how much we've had to drink. If they are not offended, and I do not worry about it, why should I care if you, a perfect stranger, are offended?

And besides, I've found, philosophically at least, that one cannot reason a person out of a belief.

I've given up on that. I learned my Internet debate lesson a long time ago. And so now, for the most part, I instead poke fun at you and your rhetoric. 

(It is also why I have kind of given up on watching presidential debates, as there is no attempt at reasoned discourse or critical evaluation, but mere parroting of party ideological positions and well-marketed sound bites. Like Frank Zappa once said "Politics is the entertainment branch of industry").

So then, the second thing a climate skeptic might say (if they had a very, very brief moment of clarity), would be "Okay. Suppose you are right. What then?" 

Whoa! Hit me with a stun-hammer! You really want to discuss this? Okay. Well, then I suppose we need to ask the question "Why am I not an equally dangerously stupid asshole?"

It's question worth asking. The question, more properly phrased, is What Am I Doing About It? And the answer, honestly, is Not Much Dude. 

I, like pretty much all my fellow Americans, am busy making the problem even worse. I'm not changing my behavior. In fact, in my case, my carbon footprint - since I burn LOTS of natural gas to melt metal for casting sculptures - is more like a carbon buttprint.

So, I suppose I'm an asshole as well. Just not nearly as dangerously stupid as you.

But I'm trying in my own way. I'm encouraging my farming friends back in Indiana to cultivate terra preta which not only conserves soil, but sequesters carbon. I'm glad to see China is kicking our ass in green technologies, and shame anyone that can make a difference into noticing. I write emails to my butthead congress and hope that my president will grow a sack and take some action. And when I do write, I stress, more than anything, that Its The Oceans, Stupid. 

And fundamentally, I'm an optimist, but a practical one.  I'm not expecting human ingenuity to make things right. I'm not expecting some hi-tech miracle to be pulled out of our collective ass. I'm not expecting Everybody to start making Nice-Nice. I'm no goo-goo-eyed wobblehead.

And I don't buy into the whole Save the Planet bullshit. The planet, quite obviously, can take care of itself. She's a tough old 4 billion year old monster bitch, with guts of molten iron, and a rock hard hide. Life has made it through plenty bad time, ranging from the Snowball Earth world glaciation events of two billion years ago, to the Great Dying of the Permian Extinction (nightmare global warming) of 250 million years ago, to the cometary greeting card the dinosaurs got 65 million years ago. And this is only the nasty shit we know about. The Old Bitch may have gone through far, far worse. But one thing is for sure - and you really, really need to get this through your head -  We Need Her, but She Don't Need Us. 

So I have to be resolutely hopeful that we can change our ways. This hope of mine, it's a belief, true. But it is a belief I have to keep at the core of my life. We do have the capacity to learn from the past, to recognize when we are fucking things up for ourselves, to realize when we are taking a shit in our own kitchen. 


  1. Well, you make ME laugh.

    I've maintained for years that the human race will be one of the least successful life forms in terms of longevity this planet has produced because we are doing exactly that. We are systematically destroying/poisoning the very systems that we need to sustain ourselves. And yes, the dear old mother will be just fine once she has shrugged us off her hide.

  2. Pagan Culture has given you some link love. Be back and read you later... I need a good healthy laugh.

  3. Surfed over from Pagan Culture...Interesting way with words...I agree,the planet will survive, perhaps not life on the planet...