You Don't Want to Live in the Amazon, Why Would They?

Bloggified by Jake on Monday, February 25, 2008

Global warming is a reality. Even the Bush administration admits as much, a prospect that was unthinkable just a few years ago. All of the world's top scientists agree that the human race has permanently changed the way the planet functions. In fact, we changed the Earth so drastically, it will show up in the fossil record, leading geologists to recognize the present as the dawn of a new geological period.

Al Gore made the quintessential case for acknowledging global warming and won an Oscar and a Nobel Prize for his efforts. Yet NPR feels the need to waste our time with a story like this?

Unfortunately, because what was once radical propaganda is now mainstream belief, the propagandists have to shift even further if they intend to continue to outrage anyone. And lest you assume I'm painting liberals and leftists with this broad stroke, the same goes for right-wingers who can't seem to settle on what punishment will be sufficiently cruel for Mexicans who dare to cross the border illegally so they bring you fresh hotel linens.

Who are these idiots who claim roads could lead to an increase in malaria if the economic boost generated attracts workers from outside the region who might have malaria? You might as well say combing your hair could kill your dog because there's a chance--regardless of how small--that you might get distracted while combing your hair and accidentally pour weed killer into your dog's food dish instead of Kibbles 'n' Bits.

Meanwhile, one of the highly-degreed scholars acknowledges that the roads will mean more trade, better lives for the villagers, economic growth, better education, and everything short of Jesus himself flying in on a zipline to carry everyone in the Amazon to Heaven in a giant backpack, but sighs that it will come at the expense of losing "uniqueness" and "quiet." True, but 150 years ago, you could have made the case that the cotton gin would come at the expense of the Negro slaves' culture of cotton picking.

Tell the farmers who will be able to sell their crops to a wider market, tell the kids who will be the first generation to have opportunities outside their insular villages, tell everyone whose life will be improved by having any one of the hundreds of electrical appliances you take for granted every day that they'll be living in a less unique place and none of them will care.

That's because when you boil it down, the reason a remote village in a chigger-and-snake-infested jungle with no electricity is "unique" is because no one would ever try to duplicate those conditions. It's a veritable hell on Earth that even the scientists in the story are eager to escape, calling for a boat after two days of hiking, yet while they use their cell phones to call for help and wait to be bailed out, they heap liberal guilt on everyone who isn't outraged by those who try to steal this hellish life from the same people who discuss how much they are looking forward to the roads.

The story seems to be trying to convince us that deforestation of the Amazon is a bad thing, which everyone already knows. Since just telling us that global warming is bad isn't enough though, the story goes further, telling us that in addition to the climate changes inherent in the activity, the roads are also bad because they rob people of the bass-ackwards lifestyle they are begging to escape and reduce the number of places in the world where you can go to be eaten by soldier ants and bot flies.

Joanne Silberner, I understand that you spent a week or more with these narrow minded pseudo-intellectuals and wanted to subject us to the same stupidity you had to endure, but when I'm fighting rush hour traffic with two kids who for some reason cannot understand the words "stop hitting each other" in the backseat, I hardly need you to pipe eight minutes of your frustration through my radio.

2 sarcastic replies:

Christian said...

Eh I don't really buy it. 25 years ago every scientist on the planet was horrified of global cooling and the onset of a new ice age. The reactionary groupthink surrounding global warming...well let's just say if I wanted to sign on with a cult, I'd at least find one that had hot women.

Jake said...

Oh, things could reverse 180 degrees again at any point in the next century. For that matter, they could do it a few times. I was just a little disappointed by a story that seemed like it might have been topical and cutting edge six years ago being aired today.

It's kind of the same way I feel when I see a cautionary story about some guy who sent all his bank information to a Nigerian prince in exile.

Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom)