Hurray for the new year

January 10, 2019   ·   0 Comments

By Constance Scrafield

What if tragedy was comedy? Well, it is currently keeping the stand-up business booming. What I’ve been offering with all due seriousness and a pallor of doom, may have made a better impact if I had been cracking jokes about it all. 

Might as well laugh it up ‘cause nobody’s taking it seriously.

What the hell – a chap on the radio confirmed, with firm authority, his chin tucked in to emphasize his presence, looking at us all from under his imposing eyebrows, “We’ll be using fossil fuels for 100 years! Let’s get those shovels in the ground and get that pipeline built!”

What a thought. Our fellow columnist, Gwynne Dyer, referred to the possibility of employing geoengineering as a (probable) stop-gap for holding global warming at bay until we sort it out. Did he have 100 years in mind?

Ill advised, sir, with all due respect, this is as bad and worse than what we are already doing. This is a looney tunes plan to shoot billions – trillions, now, I guess: a million dollars has been reduced to the level of pocket change; billions are being spent on lunch for one of those consultations on the importance of what the global language on Mars will be – where was I? – oh yes, geoengineering. This is really dodgy.

They can shoot trillions of teeny little mirrors into the atmosphere to reflect the sun’s rays back into  space, deflecting it from earth’s surface. Which sci-fi disaster movie is this?

So, those teeny mirror bits do many things: they possibly give temporary relief from global warming, more time to sort ourselves out, which we won’t, of course. I mean, why would we? We’re making zero, give or take, progress now when the warnings are so dire – still stuck with pipelines up our collective … and being led by non-believers. 

The new Brazilian president, Jair Bolsanaro, plans to open the Amazon jungles the whole world relies on, to lumber and farming…

So, those little mirrors do their thing and and there is – only possibly – some relief. We carry on, thinking we have time, but the little mirrors mess with the atmosphere (this information is correct, by the bye, not just me imagining), they also fall back down to earth and more need to be shot up, to continue messing with the atmosphere, creating the kind of real end-of-earth scenes we can barely imagine.

I am reading a book about the universe and where we are within it. A great book, using monumental numbers trying to describe, in a meaningful way, the distances involved in measuring the universe (which might be infinite, when you think about it). Anyway, author Christopher Potter talks about about the stars and the planets orbiting them and there are a huge – truly huge – numbers of them. This was very reassuring for me.

I have never, ever understood why life on other planets is a question mark. Because we haven’t had any contact with them? With our puny little equipment and our puny little minds that can only see as far as our noses, wrapped up in our puny politics of destruction and waste – oops, slipped off the edge  – so, just because we can’t find them in all that massive space sure doesn’t mean they aren’t there.

Maybe they know about us and would rather not make the acquaintance;  did our scientists ever think of that? If other species from other worlds are monitoring this one, they would know that an olive branch of friendship from humans comes with no guarantees of longevity.

Most people are not Donald and his ilk. Problem is, it is Donald and his ilk being voted in by the rest of us who are not like them. Actually, it is the fault of those of us who are not like Donald, that he and his would-bes are voted in. Because they shouted, drowning out reasonable voices; because we consented with our complacency to their ascendancy to governmental thrones.

Now, it is like a disease spreading everywhere – a horrible measles of  politics that no tiny mirrors in the sky can heal. Only a resurgence of reason in high places can slow this tide.

We thought Trudeau jr was Canada’s answer to the problem, so shiny, true and ready to fix it was he. Yet, bit by bit, the thumb screws were on; industry sat him down like a kid at school and read him the riot act about money, jobs, his position as PM. Who knows?

What we do know is how he has backed away from so many of the fine ideas that washed the country in red last election. What happened to the young, gorgeous PM who was determined to lead his country into the next decade, strong and green. How did he come to buy a pipeline?

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