More people read my Twitter-stream and my Google shared items than read my personal blog these days, but I feel so strongly about this one, I need to adapt my comments from a recent Google Reader Shared Item to blog format, just so I have this saved for posterity and can easily refer people to the sort of stupidity the eco/green debate has devolved to.
I’ve been following this sort of backlash and back and forth the green world has had when someone they respect, the guys from Freakonomics, slaughter the sacred cow of the Al Gore style green movement, cap’n’trade, carbon credit eco movement. There’s a fellow named Richard J. Walker who’s been sharing out items in Google Reader on this topic, and I generally scan them and move on.
As an aside, I generally like Richard’s shares. They challenge a lot of my core beliefs. He seems to be an atheist (I attended seminary), he seems to be an environmentalist (I am a skeptic when it comes to most eco-claims), and he seems to be somewhat of a hippie-happy Californian (I’m a gun-totin’ Texan). Plus, he has a ton of nifty bleeding edge science shares that really spark the imagination.
At any rate, though, the latest few shots across the bow were chronicled in a post over at “Climate Progress,” and mostly concern a Literature major-cum-environmentalist’s quest to discredit the Freakonomics guys and their position that emergent and bleeding edge science has a much better chance at saving the earth than economically crippling solutions generally proposed by green movement leaders.
I won’t go blow by blow, Climate Progress does a decent job of that.
The post over there ends with the quote from the gal who tries to tear apart the Freakonomics guys:
To be skeptical of climate models and credulous about things like carbon-eating trees and cloudmaking machinery and hoses that shoot sulfur into the sky is to replace a faith in science with a belief in science fiction. This is the turn that “SuperFreakonomics” takes, even as its authors repeatedly extoll their hard-headedness. All of which goes to show that, while some forms of horseshit are no longer a problem, others will always be with us.
Yeah – these back and forths have been happening in The New Yorker and the NYT, by the way. Just so you get a sense of how big the stage is and how passionate these ecotards are getting about defending their turf.
Here was my response on the GRSI:
I’m sorry – anyone who buys into the author’s point of view here, especially in light of the quote this thing ends on – is a full-on retard.
Replacing a belief in science with one in science fiction? I’m sorry, if you truly believe that, you need to read more. The promise of scifi (sans the flying cars) is here today. Just look around. Watch a TED presentation.
That’s right, I said it. Full on retard.
I stand by that, too. Full on retards, man. If you can’t open your eyes and look around you at what’s possible now as opposed to simply a year ago? Yeah. You’re retarded. That’s your only excuse. Only a retard wouldn’t be able to look around and see that tech has advanced to the point where our machines are almost freakin’ sentient now, as opposed to two or three years ago, where they were still making movies about that stuff.
And frankly, I think my judgment may be a slight to retards everywhere. I mean heck, while these ecotards are fighting it out at The New Yorker and The New York Times, even retards know that print publications are just about the easiest way to publish something and have absolutely no one read it.