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this is the archives of my old blog. Follow me at http://martinrouge.blogspot.com/ whenever I post!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Carbon footprint?

Remember when the big talk around environmentally-conscious was the whales? Or The ozone layer? Okay, so they still talk about the whales (sometimes), but the ozone layer has probably healed by now, since we don't hear about it, right? Now its all about global warming and carbon footprint.Do you know your carbon footprint? What the hell is a carbon footprint anyways?

Honestly, carbon footprint is just a buzzword. Its pretty meaningless. Its yet another way for guilt-ridden comfortably-set industrialized citizens to guilt the rest of the planet into buying into their guilt. Does that mean that its a lie? No. But its more like propaganda than anything else.

If there's one thing that bugs the hell out of me about the environmental movement (such as it is) is that they're not so much about making people aware, they're trying to make them feel bad about using modern tools, technology and power. That's where they hit a wall. The basic idea of using a tool is to make things more convenient; we are after all, a tool using species, thats what allowed us to evolve out of the trees. There's this whole branch of the "green" movement that's about selling you "green solutions" to the "carbon problem"; to me, that sounds like a marketing tool. One thing that isn't mentioned is how much of a "carbon footprint" that fancy lightbulb accumulated by its construction. Funny that.

I also find highly hypocritical the whole idea behind reducing long-distance transportation. While I'm all for buying locally and such, we have to come to term that somewhere, the world has changed and we cant turn back time. Its strange about how they are all about reducing air travel and so on, but somehow, ecologists traveling to remote locations or to global conferences, thats just fine. But Joe public, you better stay home and visit the local ecotouristic site, here's a brochure. Can you see the elitism implied? I wonder how much carbon all those scientific research vessels produce each year. I wonder how they offset that?

In a way, the "greens" are the new feminists. They are from the upper white class, urban and suburban, elitists and full of themselves. They are increadibly conceited in their own self-opinion, as if they knew better than anybody else how to save the planet. They are just as bad as religious wingnuts and political extremists of every stripes. All that they spout is guilt trips wrapped in political and technical jargons. All that they are is double standards.

What is particularly insulting in their discourse is when they attempt to impose those high-faluting values on other parts of the planet. Imposing industrialized solutions on people who cant even afford to feed themselves. Bravo, eco-colonialists, you make me proud. The best way to help the planet is the same way to help the impoverished: help them help themselves. Micro-credit has done more to help people in poor and under-developed areas than all the grants and donations have done. Because there is no corruption involved. No government official will pocket the money and buy himself a jag or whatever. Its because it empowers the people, who find their own solutions out of their predicament. Its about human dignity over hand-outs. If the "green" movement were to be able to get their heads out of their collective asses, maybe a similar concept could be brought forward, where everybody gains out of the environment and every individual will feel not guilt-free but empowered by their actions.

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