Sunday, July 12, 2009

Ecopolypse 96 Months From Now, More or Less

Jug-Eared Prince Chucky who still pines for George III, that much maligned historical symbol for the rights of hereditary powers, has ventured to set a date five years AFTER the Mayan end of days, but the red squirrel [I was bitten by one after knocking it from a tree David-like with a stone in northern Wisconsin] may have two more years before vanishing, according to the PoW's calendar of doom. Prince Chucky's giant otological appendages may have picked up some of those noises that dogs hear, but we citified humans cannot. Or perhaps like Siegfried, his German Cousin, he can understand the language of birds. More likely, he is a spokesboy for his American Cousin in the ear department, the formidable Teleprompter Kid, and given geneological charts, Obama's slave-holding Kansas ancestors may have some of Sang-Royal which a short trip through the Almanach de Gotha could solve.

Mark Stein has a lot of fun with all this, including some particularly witless noises from a SF guru:
I always enjoy it when the masks slip and the warm-mongers explicitly demand we adopt a massive Poverty Expansion Program to save the planet. “I don’t think a lot of electricity is a good thing,” said Gar Smith of San Francisco’s Earth Island Institute a few years back. “I have seen villages in Africa that had vibrant culture and great communities that were disrupted and destroyed by the introduction of electricity,” he continued, regretting that African peasants “who used to spend their days and evenings in the streets playing music on their own instruments and sewing clothing for their neighbors on foot-pedal powered sewing machines” are now slumped in front of Desperate Housewives reruns all day long.

One assumes Gar Smith is sincere in his fetishization of bucolic African poverty, with its vibrantly rampant disease and charmingly unspoilt life expectancy in the mid-forties. But when a hereditary prince starts attacking capitalism and pining for the days when a benign sovereign knew what was best for the masses, he gives the real game away. Capitalism is liberating: You’re born a peasant but you don’t have to die one.

Of course, Mark omits the endemic civil wars and socialist chicanery which blotches the entire Dark Continent, but conditions of space and the necessity to insert knife into hereditary prince's ribcage [besides the USA, PoW Chucky thinks that modern architecture is a mistake---too many elevators and escalators for those peasant masses] hamper Mark's emasculation by character assassination. [And PoW Chucky IS a character!] Mark goes on in an amusing and instructive toney rant on how the ecopolypse is simply Al Gore's way of gaining control of the planet by other means than election fraud [just kidding]. Anyway, here's Mark's divagation from political correctness:
You can work hard and get a nice place in the suburbs. If you were a 19th-century Russian peasant and you got to Ellis Island, you’d be living in a tenement on the Lower East Side, but your kids would get an education and move uptown, and your grandkids would be doctors and accountants in Westchester County. And your great-grandchild would be a Harvard-educated environmental activist demanding an end to all this electricity and indoor toilets.

Environmentalism opposes that kind of mobility. It seeks to return us to the age of kings, when the masses are restrained by a privileged elite. Sometimes they will be hereditary monarchs, such as the Prince of Wales. Sometimes they will be merely the gilded princelings of the government apparatus — Barack Obama, Barney Frank, Nancy Pelosi. In the old days, they were endowed with absolute authority by God. Today, they’re endowed by Mother Nature, empowered by Gaia to act on her behalf. But the object remains control — to constrain you in a million ways, most of which would never have occurred to Henry VIII, who, unlike the new cap-and-trade bill, was entirely indifferent as to whether your hovel was “energy efficient.” The old rationale for absolute monarchy — Divine Right — is a tough sell in a democratic age. But the new rationale — Gaia’s Right — has proved surprisingly plausible.

The Young are Killing their Ancestors, and Civilization and its Discontents is engendering The Future of An Illusion, to get all Freudian about it. Mother Earth is swallowing her children rather than the nasty old Titan Dad Cronus [Time], but the effect is the same. Mark defines a deeper agenda at work beneath the PoW's false-prophet ravings:
Beginning with FDR, wily statists justified the massive expansion of federal power under ever more elastic definitions of the commerce clause. For Obama-era control freaks, the environment and health care are the commerce clause supersized. They establish the pretext for the regulation of everything: If the government is obligated to cure you of illness, it has an interest in preventing you from getting ill in the first place — by regulating what you eat, how you live, the choices you make from the moment you get up in the morning. Likewise, if everything you do impacts “the environment,” then the environment is an all-purpose umbrella for regulating everything you do. It’s the most convenient and romantic justification for what the title of Paul Rahe’s new book rightly identifies as “soft despotism.”

Taxing everything means controlling everything, and that's the inexorable fate of failed Republics, which defines the current starte of American politics. Norman Thomas was the candidate on the Socialist ticket [his scion Evan is a Beltway pundito] and famously opined that America would become socialist without the word ever being employed. At the moment, a silent majority still sucks its collective thumb as the slap-happy Dems pass otherworldly laws against imaginary climate & health emergencies. Mark finishes them off verbally, the Dems, with his good news that Europe is the US's canary-in-the-coal-mine:
he good news is that, at this week’s G8 summit, America’s allies would commit only to the fuzziest and most meaningless of environmental goals. Europe has been hit far harder by the economic downturn. When your unemployment rate is 17 percent (as in Spain), “unsustainable growth” is no longer your most pressing problem. The environmental cult is itself a product of what the prince calls the “Age of Convenience”: It’s what you worry about it when you don’t have to worry about jobs or falling house prices or collapsed retirement accounts. Today, as European prime ministers are beginning to figure out, a strategic goal of making things worse when they’re already worse is a much tougher sell.

Though no longer a Republic, the USA is still a democracy, much to Prince Jug-Ears chagrin, and the ex-colonists might take a tip from the former imperial power that the UK might go Tory soon and then follow by evicting the squatters in DC in 2010.

No comments :