There are all manner of idiots in the world. There are dangerous idiots, annoying idiots, (Lord help us) influential idiots and then there are some idiots who wallow in such specious gibberish that it requires a hard heart to look upon them as anything other than pitiful.
The Guardian (where else?) has a long record of providing a platform for pitiful idiots as illustrated by the column they insist on giving to George Monbiot:
“If we take into account such factors as pollution and the depletion of natural capital, we see that the quality of life peaked in the UK in 1974 and in the US in 1968, and has been falling ever since. We are going backwards.”
Perhaps it’s just you that is going backwards, George. Not sure about the rest of us. Mind you if you right, then perhaps the nutty 60’s has something to do with it.
“The reason should not be hard to grasp. Our economic system depends upon never-ending growth, yet we live in a world with finite resources. Our expectation of progress is, as a result, a delusion.”
Ah George, you haven’t been reading your Julian Simon like a good boy. You haven’t have you? Naughty.
“Speak this truth in public and you are dismissed as a crank, a prig, a lunatic.”
Which you clearly have been.
“The laws of thermodynamics impose inherent limits upon biological production.”
Er, care to explain that, George?
“Even the repayment of debt, the pre-requisite of capitalism, is mathematically possible only in the short-term. As Heinrich Haussmann has shown, a single pfennig invested at 5% compounded interest in the year AD 0 would, by 1990, have reaped a volume of gold 134bn times the weight of the planet. Capitalism seeks a value of production commensurate with the repayment of debt.”
I’d love to give this a Fisking but I must confess that I have no idea what the f*cking hell he is actually talking about. It sounds like the kind of marxoid tripe they teach at universities and which is so deliberately opaque that it must be very clever and authoratative and therefore beyond question.
“Now, despite the endless denials, it is clear that the wall towards which we are accelerating is not very far away. Within five or 10 years, the global consumption of oil is likely to outstrip supply. Every year, up to 75bn tonnes of topsoil are washed into the sea as a result of unsustainable farming, which equates to the loss of around 9m hectares of productive land.”
Time for a ‘Made-up-Statistics’ warning!
“Every national newspaper in Britain lamented the “disappointing” volume of sales before Christmas. Sky News devoted much of its Christmas Eve coverage to live reports from Brent Cross, relaying the terrifying intelligence that we were facing “the worst Christmas for shopping since 2000″.
Suppose that has nothing whatsoever to do with Gordon Brown’s tax increases which have deprived us of so much of our disposable income? No, course not. Silly me for even asking.
“The economist Bernard Lietaer has shown how a system based upon negative rates of interest would ensure that we accord greater economic value to future resources than to present ones. By shifting taxation from employment to environmental destruction, governments could tax over-consumption out of existence. But everyone who holds power today knows that her political survival depends upon stealing from the future to give to the present.”
‘Bernard Lietaer’? Never heard of him but I’ll wager that he’s the kind of smelly, dysfunctional political activist who haunts Labour Party fringe meetings with a shopping bag full of newspaper clipping and scribbled essays in the hope that he’ll get an opportunity to corner some hapless victim and bore them into the grave.
“Everything we thought was good – giving more exciting presents to our children, flying to a friend’s wedding, even buying newspapers – turns out also to be bad.”
Buying the Guardian is definitely bad. Otherwise that one sentence contains everything you need to know about Mr.Monbiot. He is a jealous, begrudging loser who has spun an ideological mask of deceit around himself in order to provide a fig-leaf for his po-faced, anti-human, defeatist miserabilism.
Pitiful. Just pitiful.