The Electric Commentary

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Happy Earth Day

Instead of watching Captain Planet reruns on Boomerang today, I suggest heading over to your local book store to pick up Bjorn Lomborg's classic, The Skeptical Environmentalist. Not only will it make you smarter, but your purchase of a book will slightly increase the demand for paper, which will increase the demand for trees, which will increase the number of trees on earth. You could plant a tree of course. Some people do that on Earth Day. Just remember that you can accomplish basically the same thing by purchasing paper products. The more books, paper plates, newspapers, boxes, etc., that you buy, the more trees will be planted by tree farmers in the future.

And since we are in no way running out of landfill space, you don't even have to feel bad about those paper plates.

On this Earth Day, remember first and foremost that the Earth spends most of its time trying to kill you. Environmentalism shouldn't focus on the Earth itself, the Earth is just scenery. It should focus on people (and animals and plants, yes, but people first).

The often romanticized "primitive state of nature" was a terrible time where death and disease was the norm. The best thing that we can do for the environment, and for ourselves, is to learn more and continue to invent new technologies. It is the only way we will ever get off of coal and oil for power. It will help us live longer. It will aid in the restoration of the environmental damage that we have caused. It will make the world a better place.

Those that would impede advancement are the true enemies of the environment. In fact, when you're finished reading Bjorn, why not add a few more incentives to the tree growers and pick up Ray Kurzweil's The Singularity is Near too?

It's about 74 degrees out right now, sunny, with a nice breeze, and I think I've spent enough time behind a computer for the day.

2 Comments:

  • I would bring my own reusable grocery bags to the grocery store, but two things are holding me back. One, I don't go grocery shopping. Two, europeans do that, and I ain't no europhile.

    Now then, I agree with most of what you say, but I think you are painting environmentalists as all the same in their ridiculousness levels.

    Yes, some are crazy and romanticize the wilderness when they only ever choose to live in that wilderness one week out of the year, if that. But, there is somehting to be said for conservation efforts, preserving Grizzly bears and wolves because they are sweet, cutting down on pollution because of its bad but hard to detect effects, etc.

    I saw my first bald eagles in Wisconsin, and that is worth, I don't know, maybe around 20 bucks to me.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:39 PM  

  • Technology also helps the environment by speeding up the time it takes for humans to leave Earth and terraform / settle other planets.

    By Anonymous Rashid Muhammad, at 8:58 AM  

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