This is satire.1
Hi, I’m scientist Paul Ehrlich. You might remember me from such failed predictions as “Everybody’s Going to Die by 1984!” and “Tin to Become More Precious than Water!”
Today, I’m going to foretell you another story of coming calamity. This story is about our climate, and how if something isn’t done right now, or even yesterday, we will all, once more, be consigned to cataclysm.
But this time we have a chance! Because this time, we know how to fight back. We know who are enemies are, and we know how to hit ‘em where it hurts.
Before I tell you about that, let me take you on a journey that started in 1968.
It was a time of free experimentation. A time of rebellion, happiness, and unbridled liberty. Everywhere the young were throwing off the shackles of the old. Mankind—and womankind—was growing up.
This wasn’t just happening in popular culture; no, sir! This went on in science, too. In labs all across the country, men—and women—were tossing off their restrictive lab coats and engaging in wild speculation!
And I was in on it. I can proudly say that I led the way. Is was I who began to understand that soon—yes, very, very soon—hundreds of millions of people were going to die. Not millions, not tens of millions, but hundreds of millions!
Why? Because they were going to run out of food. They were going to—I still get the shivers thinking of this—starve to death.
Well, I was off a little in that one. But in my favor, since my book appeared, there have been multiple reports of children being sent to bed without their dinner. Hey, there was actual starvation, too! Though most of it was caused by wars or because of failed socialist central planning. Still, a dead body is a dead body, and each one counts in my favor.
Anyway, if you only look only at the starvation numbers, you’ll miss the frightening fact that population sure did increase since 1968! That has to count for something, right? It’s true I used the term “Population Bomb”, but I didn’t mean that population was going to “bomb out.” I merely meant that population was going to increase. So you can see that I was right after all!
I suppose it’s true nowadays that demographers are worried about underpopulation, particularly in advanced societies. But how many demographers do you know that have a world-wide following like me? How many have received a MacArthur Foundation Genius Award like I have? Since nobody listens to these demographers, but they do listen to me, it can only mean that I know what I’m talking about.
Not convinced? Why, even now I have President Obama’s ear—once removed, through my old, and devoted, student John Holdren. He’s Obama’s Science Adviser. And since he knows what I know—like how badly we need a global redistribution of wealth, and how some women should undergo compulsory abortion—you can bet the President is getting my top-notch advice.
If you concentrate on those missed predictions to dismiss me, you will be making a terrific mistake. Because it’s not the predictions that count, it’s how important the theory behind them is! And no theory is more important than man-made—and woman-made—adverse climate change.
It’s true, I’m not a climate scientist, but I like what those guys are up to. The fundamental basis of their theory is that the world’s weather woes are caused by our greed and excess breeding. That has to be right. I sure want it to be right. Therefore, it must be.
My friends, you have heard that there is a highly organized cabal of skeptics—fattened by the money of oil companies!2—who have the temerity to publicly dispute climate change. These people will not admit that the science is undisputed. This cannot stand.
When those deniers wake up on the morning of the ad placement and have their papers read to them, boy! Will they be in for a gut-busting surprise? You bet. Opposition to our wholly beneficent plans will fold faster than a coward holding a straight flush.
Listen, friends. If we don’t do something now, then everybody’s going to die. No, not everybody, but most everybody. Maybe even me. You already know that my predictions about this kind of thing were technically right before, so you know I have a good chance of being technically right again.
Help by sending money to my organization today. Good day, and thank you for listening.
1I weep that I must have this disclaimer.
2I received no money, nor any other consideration, for this article. Or for any other that I have ever wrote about climatology. In fact, the opposite is true. All work I do comes out of my own pocket.
Thanks to an anonymous reader for help with the research.