Sunday, January 4, 2015

Sustaining our climate disaster : 'talkin' about my generation' --- the hyper-active Rogue Boomers ruining our planet, with our passive help

True : we didn't start the fire - blame the beginnings of our carbon burning frenzy on our parents, grandparents and great great great grandparents.

But we are the generation in charge now - in fact the generation in charge when the global (rather than local) dangers of the Big Smoke first became apparent to all but those of closed minds.

So the responsibility for ruining paradise is really upon us, the Boomer Generation - those of us born roughly between the early mid Forties and the early mid Sixties.

We'll be the ones still in charge when the CO2 and elevated temperature levels rise so high they tip us into irreversible disaster.

Most of us - in fairness - believe in human induced climate disaster and worry what can be done.

But we worry and fret so completely passively that we might as well not even show up o to be weighed on the moral scales.

Meanwhile some of us Boomers are moral monsters - hardly sleeping or taking vacations we are so busy thinking of new ways to dig up, transport and burn ever more carbon, ever faster.

These rogue Boomers run countries as Prime Ministers, Presidents and Dictators (pardon my redundancies), run big international corporations, run big international media empires.

But they are a minority - albeit a very active and self confident minority - and they only get away with it because we in the vast Boomer silent majority let them, all because we hold our own convictions so lightly and feebly.

They - the rogue Boomers - privately admit, in their heart of hearts, that human carbon emissions are changing the climate.

But they remain (both publicly - and much more crucially, privately) convinced that real world human engineering can quickly, cheaply, easily overcome any problems that the egghead scientists in their ivory tower labs can detect.

Yet another postwar Manhattan Project will solve any problem.

Telling indeed that the people most convinced of the efficiency of WWII bureaucracy were the ones who never personally suffered through it's chickenshit, to use the words of Paul Fussell, who did know of it first hand.

I would say it was the youngest of the young adults from the WWII - those too junior to know of the mid level real world frustrations - together with all those too young to know much (or anything) personally of WWII.

They are the ones who fell hardest for the carefully cultivated postwar myth of the efficiency of the Manhattan (nuclear) Project's secretive, un-democratic, throw big money at any problem approach.

That meant almost everyone in the  postwar world born after 1920 initially bought into Vannevar Bush's Big Lie.

Over time, personal experiences with postwar bureaucratic failures and revelations about what really went on in WWII converted many us to becoming a Doubting Thomas about the touted advantages of another Manhattan (nuclear) Project type operation to solve anything.

But clearly the rogue Boomers (in terms of personality: action-oriented unreflective, shallow types) never got the memo : because most never ever read a book - or ever changed their mind - after college.

What I think I can bring to the effort to fight to save our climate before it is too late is all the research work I have done on the Manhattan (nuclear) Project's little-known alter ego : the Manhattan (penicillin) Project.

It was everything - in almost every detail - that the nuclear project was not and so it offers, I believe, a way out of our climate dilemma ....

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