In one Seinfeld episode, Kramer has joined the annual Manhattan AIDS walk but has refused to wear the symbolic twisted red ribbon. He is confronted by an angry group of fellow walkers, and one asks him, “What’s the matter. Why won’t you wear the ribbon? Aren’t you against AIDS?”
That last question was revealing. It tells us that the walk participants hadn’t the least interest in the science of disease transmission, of proteins and polymerase chain reactions, of horizontal DNA transmission rates, and so on. Being against AIDS—and all that that entailed—was all that mattered.
But you cannot be against a disease. Viruses and bacteria aren’t political, don’t take a stand, and haven’t even the nervous system to be aware of their disruptions. They are immune to protests and activism. No matter how politically pure of heart you are, you can still be infected.
And now we learn, via the Telegraph, that a number of prominent celebrities have “have all joined protests against climate change.” Miley Cyrus herself has even penned a song which contains the line, “You know that you want to” help the Earth. Deep. Cate Blanchett has dictated, “Political failure at Copenhagen in December is quite simply unacceptable.” Unacceptable!—do you hear me?
Yes, star power will help. Gaia herself will finally awaken and decide that, from the moment Leonard DiCaprio became environmentally aware, the Earth’s climate will henceforth no longer change. It will remain static and ideal. Every day will be like a summer’s afternoon, rain will be plentiful, clouds will be fluffy and inspirational, and those who own expensive beach houses will never again have to worry about erosion.
Sigh. You cannot be against climate change. The climate has never, not ever, been static. It is always changing, and always will change. No matter how many activists, no matter the number of celebrities or how pretty they are, none can ever change the fact that climate change is normal and unstoppable. Perhaps not always beneficial—that’s just tough if it isn’t—but entirely natural.
But logic hasn’t stopped Global Cool, which calls itself “an environmental charity” and “which has enlisted celebrities”—celebrities!—“to help to make saving energy an ‘aspirational lifestyle'”, whatever the hell that is. If you really want to depress yourself, log on to their home page.
It is yet more evidence that man-made global warming—a.k.a. climate change—has always been more about politics than about science. Scientists like Jim Hansen et al. have forever tarnished their reputations and invited skepticism of their work by engaging in “activism.” We can never be sure that scientists are telling us the truth about their research when they are also engaged politically. Climategate has enforced this already common view.
And since we learn that Global Cool also engages in “carbon coaching,” we can see that global warming is also about making a fast buck. Well, we already knew this when we saw all the big-name companies jostling to take sides in various Cap and Trade schemes. How to cash in? What politicians can we get on our side? were the big questions. Al Gore, like the television preachers of the ’80s, famously became wealthy by touting his hellfire and death scenario. And celebrities, as they always do, looked to see what cause was most popular and then competed with one another to be more “for” it than their colleagues.
But these ploys were for the already rich and famous. It took some time to figure out how the little guy could cash in. This is why we can be grateful to Global Cool (no doubt there are other firms), for its gift of a workable environmental get-rich-quick scheme. And a perfectly legal one, too!
Like becoming a “life coach”, signing up as a “carbon coach” requires no expertise nor credentials, and clients expect no success, which would require a quantitative definition, of which there is none. In the days of yore, the equivalent scam was psychic forecasts and palm readings. But you have to be careful about those, because in some locales fortune telling for money is illegal. Not so for preaching the green.
Thus, my official announcement: I am now a carbon coach. For every $39.99 sent to me, I will detail one way in which you can become greener. Cash or Paypal accepted. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
This is a serious offer! I will gladly accept your money.
Update: It’s been several hours and nobody has yet availed themselves of my services. So the next ten emailers get a 50% discount, plus their third carbon coaching session free!
Update: I was a little late in posting this, but reader Ian sent these cartoons in. Blunt by Knutz.