A Deft And Appropriate Rebuke To Climate Change Hysteria

FLASHBACK: Jonestown combats climate change

FLASHBACK: Jonestown combats climate change

On her blog, Ann Althouse delivered a devastating and ethically profound defenestration to Jennifer Ludden, a  correspondent for NPR’s “All Things Considered” who delivered a mad feature she called “Should We Be Having Kids In The Age Of Climate Change?”  Now, the very question is incompetent and irresponsible, as it treats a speculative future event—she even admits that it is speculative!–of unknown cause, arrival, duration and seriousness as the equivalent of certain nuclear war or a zombie apocalypse. The essay and her attitude represent hysteria, cowardice, scare-mongering and an insufficient appreciation for the importance of continuing the species, or at least having people smart enough to spell “climate change” contributing to the gene pool so “Planet of the Apes” doesn’t become reality. No, the pre-emptive extinction of the human race is not a rational response to the problems posed by climate change, Jennifer, and why the hell are my tax dollars being wasted to hire people who want people to think it is?

That would be my crude response to this cretinous piece. Ann Althouse, however, is far cleverer, constructive, less confrontational and effective in her response, which in its own way is more damning than mine. She launches from this quote from the NPR piece:

“I said to [my children], ‘I hope you never have children,’ which is an awful thing to say. It can bring me to tears easily,” said 67-year-old Nancy Nolan, who had children before she learned found out about climate change.”

Prof. Althouse, contrary to my inclination, doesn’t counter with, “Oh? And what did you ‘find out,’ Nancy? Here are computer printouts of climate trends and projections from five different models. Which is correct? Explain it to me, please. Show me you understand what the hell you’re talking about that is so devastating that you wish your children had never been born, you silly, silly twit!”

Instead, she writes,

If anybody really cares about carbon emissions, stop your crying and be hard-headed about what emits carbon. It’s not the person per se, but what the person does. Back in 2010, I made a list of changes you could make to your behavior. No air conditioning isn’t on the list, because that is already a given. If you haven’t done that yet, Nancy and the Weepers, you are crying crocodile tears. So get up and switch that off. Forever. And now, read my list:

It includes such “common sense’ advice as this…

“Do not go anywhere you don’t have to go. When there is no food in the house to make dinner, instead of hopping in the car to go to the grocery store or a restaurant, take it as a cue to fast. As noted above, your weight should be at the low end of normal, and opportunities to reach or stay there should be greeted with a happy spirit.”

I won’t include any more here. The professor’s clear message: why don’t you make some sacrifices yourself rather than condemn the species to extinction?

Read the whole thing on her blog. Ann earned the click.

19 thoughts on “A Deft And Appropriate Rebuke To Climate Change Hysteria

  1. Would Hillary Clinton’s 20 mile jaunt on a CO2 belching private jet from Martha’s Vineyard to Nantucket to attend a posh de Rothschild fundraiser (at $100 large per) receive special dispensation?

    Perhaps ferry conveyance is for little people?

  2. Actually, I think the NPR piece is simply the perfect articulation of the end game of the environmental movement: remove all humans from the planet so the planet will be allowed to heal. Truly reductio ad absurdum, emphasis on absurdum.

  3. An friend of mine wrote something a couple of years ago on a different site regarding a visit to Madison, WI from the author Naomi Klein discussing climate change and the need to reduce emissions – the article stated 10%. I can’t provide a link because it appears they removed it, likely due to the rather heated discussion that followed the article, I think it’s an interesting opinion and it warrants a reasonable discussion. Here is his comment in its entirety..

    “When are all these activists going to stand up and address the real cause of environmental problems, excessive world population growth! You can reduce the emissions of everything that produces greenhouse gases to 10% of what they are today and as the population grows the amount of emissions to feed the needs of the increased population will increase thus offsetting any progress that they achieved and as the population continues to grow it will just get worse and worse!

    It doesn’t make a heap of difference what these activist propose when the population of the world continues to grow at it’s current positive growth rate. What we NEED to do is to inspire people to have no more than one child per couple so the future population of the world will start to actually decline as parents leave this world. As the world population significantly declines the effects of humans on the environment as a whole will be dramatic. This needs to be a global effort but working on this right in our own back yard and setting the example for the rest of the world is a great place to start.

    What happens when the population of the world significantly out-paces the amount of food we can reasonably produce and massive populations start moving across the globe where the food is being produced, this can happen peaceably or not so peaceably. Humans are the scourge of the earth, we need to voluntarily begin reducing the population of the world now before it’s too late for future generations.”

    That’s his opinion.

    Okay; discuss.

    • I had a discussion with my friend about this not long after he wrote it and he said population growth is the “root problem” of many things on earth and if climate change is the result of human activities then it’s not logical to think that reducing emissions without addressing the root problem will fix the problem. I asked him how society could “inspire people to have no more than one child per couple”; he jokingly replied, “I’m not the how-to guy, I’m the guy that finds root problems” and then he sarcastically mentioned something about how the US government used to pay some pig farmers to raise fewer pigs.

      I think population growth is certainly going to be, or already is, a growing problem, it could be the “root problem”, and it’s likely one of those problems that has no reasonable solution; but should we ignore it?

      • This friend of yours, anyone I know?

        IMHO, Mother Gaia would function better with a couple of billion fewer inhabitants.

        Anywho, it’s been an unfleshed out hypothesis of mine that the Human Haters have an adjacent concern about a warming Planet.

        Now if you’re a firm believer in Dr. Michael Mann-made Global Warming’s Medieval Warming Period (MWP) bereft Hockey Stick theory, read no further.

        The MWP saw great increases in human population and longevity due to advances in food production/availabilty & farming techniques, agricultural methods (domestication of plants and animals), nutrition, trade and a favorable growing climate to boot.


        Scary thought to the Human Haters, am I right?

        It gets worse.

        The MWP’s population increases & mobility also saw the spread of Catholicism and other religions assuming a larger role; many of the great European Cathedrals were built during the time.

        Now, what’s more horrifying to the Human Haters than just more of what they hate?

        More of what they hate being people of faith, that is to say, not thinking the way they should.

        Like I said, this is just a rough theory

        I, I mean ‘it,’ would benefit from a few Brink’s Trucks loaded with free, I mean, publicly-funded research $’s, to carry it a step further.

        In or out…?

        • Paul W. Schlecht said, “This friend of yours, anyone I know?”

          Yup, you know who. I remember reading it in the saved comments that he gave me access to and it was easy to find with a quick search; he posted it in 2014 on a article and it’s been stripped from online existence – at least the saved link doesn’t work anymore.

      • Probably not, if for no other reason than that the greatest rates of population occur in the poorer, less educated cultures.

    • Paul Ehrlich (and his wife Anna, uncredited) 1968, THE POPULATION BOMB. The world was supposed to end in 1982, amid famine, economic collapse and disastrous nuclear war. It is now 2016.

      • dragin_dragon said, “Paul Ehrlich (and his wife Anna, uncredited) 1968, THE POPULATION BOMB. The world was supposed to end in 1982, amid famine, economic collapse and disastrous nuclear war. It is now 2016.”

        I don’t put much stock in such predictions and I can tell you that my friend puts a whole lot less stock in them than I do.

  4. Let’s stipulate that there is some number (“one”) of people on the Earth that is objectively not enough to sustain the survival of the species. Perhaps the actual number is somewhat more.
    Let’s also stipulate that there is some number (“50 mega-kagillion”) that is too damn many to allow the species to continue. Perhaps the actual number is somewhat less.

    Somewhere in between there is some optimal number to shoot for. There would be many variables to take into account, but presumably one could calculate it based on available data, and make as reasonable as possible estimates where the necessary data does not exist.



  5. The maximum number of people on the Earth will be limited by the ability of the planet to produce oxygen. I have no idea what this number is, but it is obviously a finite amount. If you assume you can import oxygen or manufacture it from other extra-planetary resources, then I suppose the number will be limited more to thermodynamics – too much waste heat given off by human bodies and/or human technology would destroy the biosphere, since neither the Earth, nor anything else, is perfect at dissapating heat or recycling heat energy.

    Ignoring these two (depending on situation) Absolute Limits, there are presumably other considerations involved. If you had an advanced Space Economy, you presumably would import most of your materials from space , produce most of your pollution in space, extract fresh water from space, etc. I suppose a world population in this case could be in the hundreds of billions to somewhere between 1 and 10 trillion. You’d have basically a planetary city , with people living under water, underground, and high above the clouds in massive skyscrapers. Even then, you’d presumably want to save some land as parks, some ocean as sea parks, etc, and people would need a minimum amount of space so as not to feel crowded.

    A fascinating topic, but there are two takeaways:
    A. Population will in part be determined by your level of technology and how you wish people to live. Like Sardines ? Or should everyone have their ‘own estate’, say, the size of Tara with robotic servants?
    B. Absent technological considerations there are physical considerations as to how many humans can live on planet Earth. My opinion is that food production will probably be the real limit – there is only so much phosphorus in the world, or in the Solar System for that matter.

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