We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

The more anti-carbon governments become, the madder protesters are

Seen on a friend’s Facebook page:

I’ve regularly said that Extinction Rebellion and Just Stop Oil types are the most ridiculous people in society right now – their combination of intellectual ineptitude and ethical irresponsibility makes both a mockery and a disgrace of them as human beings. And I think it’s clear to see now that the more they persist, the more harm they are doing to the cause they claim to support. I think ‘claim’ here is the operative word, because it is obvious that lies are at the heart of what they are doing. In case you missed it, the big giveaway is this. It’s that the more this country and its politicians, establishments and media institutions cravenly bend to their narrative, the more paranoid and frenzied they become.

If you’ve not noticed this, you’ve not being paying enough attention. Politicians have done way more than is needed in terms of enshrining extreme climate policies in law, allocating billions to green projects, subsidising renewables, imposing Pigouvian penalties on carbon emissions, and pushing for the Overton window to be shifted to the extreme left on environmentalist dogma. While at the same time, we’ve seen the eco-alarmists grow ever more extreme, hysterical, hateful, immature and resentful of human achievement and material progress, trying more and more outlandish things in order to get attention, and disrupting society from within the purview of their entitled, middle class playpens. They will never be satisfied, because the only thing that could begin to make them see the light is a total transformative escape out of their narrow, bitter and parochial minds.

The comment got me thinking that with certain types of protesters, what they want is to protest, period. The last thing they want is for businessmen or politicians to actually do things that are practical or necessary. They crave a cause, and developments such as more fuel-efficient cars, or carbon capture technology, are cases of “shooting their fox”. I get the impression that in much of the West (this seems less so in Asia) a part of the affluent class of young and not-so-young feel they missed out on the “great causes” of civil rights in the 60s, or anti-war protests of various kinds. I think this explains some, if not all, of the rage around the trans lobby and aspects of Critical Race Theory. (Mind you, I haven’t seen a lot of protest from such people about the brutalities of Iran, or Russia’s criminality in Ukraine, or the persecutions against various groups by the Chinese Communist Party.)

What we are seeing are the frustrations of those who crave membership of a cult and I think demonstrates the loss of any coherent philosophical anchor in their lives.

On a separate and related note on the “green” front, I see that France has banned short-haul domestic flights. So you have to take the train, drive, cycle, ride a horse, or walk.

32 comments to The more anti-carbon governments become, the madder protesters are

  • Paul Marks

    Johnathan Pearce – yes.

    The “protests” are essentially Astroturf – they are not protesting against government “Green” taxes and regulations, they support them. The “resistance” is funded by Big Business (the international corporations) and supported by the international government bureaucracy – they are not the “resistance” they are the system.

    And the more “Policy” (they decide what policy is – hence the capital P) is pushed – the more they demmand.

    Imagine how real resisters would be treated – say a protest against the covid injections or a “white lives matter” protest against the murder of white people.

    The protestors would not last long.

  • Paul Marks

    By the way – none of this is really about CO2 emissions, if it was then “Just Stop Oil” and so on, would be targeting the People’s Republic of China, which produces vastly more C02 than anyone else.

    This “protest movement” is about pushing totalitarian collectivism and destroying the West – not “Paul being paranoid again”, it does not take long to find the published writings of the leaders of these groups, and they are all filled with fanatical hatred for the West (we are “patriarchal” and “racist” – and China is not?).

    It is not about C02 – it never was. It is about destroying what is left of liberty and setting up a system of totalitarian control.

    And, tragically, international Corporate Big Business and international government bureaucracy (not that these is much of a distinction between the two in this age of public-private-partnership “Stakeholder Capitalism”) is fully on board with this agenda.

    It would be better not to be alive in such a time, but we are alive – we are where we are. So, we must fight as hard as we can – even if defeat (slavery) seems likely.

    “Do not go gentle into that good night – rage, rage, against the dying of the light”.

  • TDK

    Mind you, I haven’t seen a lot of protest from such people about the brutalities of Iran, or Russia’s criminality in Ukraine, or the persecutions against various groups by the Chinese Communist Party.

    Of course you haven’t. If Post Modernism teaches us anything it is that there is no absolute truths. Therefore the protestors can’t criticise “them” they can only criticise “us”. We can’t judge “them”. But We are guilty. That’s how they can judge Islamic countries to have more freedom for women than the west.

    I asked my nephew who is an active supporter of ER why he didn’t protest outside the Chinese embassy when they were building something like one power station a fortnight. “They are poor and are catching up” and have “promised to cut down in the future” and “besides which we have a long history of emissions and their emissions per capita are lower than ours”. “But surely” I replied “if carbon emissions are bad then it doesn’t matter whether one man emits a billion tons too much or one billion people each omit one ton too much. Both have to stop”. “That’s beside the point”. “What!”

    Just to add an irrelevant aside: My nephews father was a CEO until 10 years ago and lives in a £3M house and owns 4 flats for sublet including one in Paris.

  • Paul Marks

    TDK – yes, their evasions are disgusting.

    But, please remember, your nephew is being manipulated by groups whose leaders do not care about C02.

    They really do not care about C02 – C02 is not what this is about.

    For example, Dr Klaus Schwab was pushing the same policies of international governance (Corporate State “Stakeholder Capitalism”) back in the 1970s – when the fear was global cooling, not global warming.

    What they say it is about is never what it is really about – and Dr Schwab is no mastermind, he is just one member of an international class committed to tyranny.

    Tyranny, world governance, is what this is about – the excuses change over the years, but the objective remains the same.

    Is there a contradiction between the international Corporate State types and the radical (often semi-Marxist) activists on the ground?

    Yes there is a contradiction, I do not deny that, but presently they are on the same side.

  • John

    I have read reports that in Tuesdays mid-terms 18-29 year olds voted +29% for the Democrats although admittedly I cannot find figures which show the actual numbers of this traditionally low-voting age group.

    There can be little doubt that your nephew has been indoctrinated by the same education system albeit in a different continent and now holds the same unquestioning world-views.

  • Paul Marks

    Yes John – the education system has become an indoctrination system, and not just in the United States.

  • Johnathan Pearce (London)

    Paul, another thing that backs up your point is look at what these goblins attack: Western works of art. This is about attacking culture, talent, greatness, merit.

  • Dave Ward

    @ Paul Marks, TDK & John – I nearly spat my cereal over the breakfast table this morning:

    I’ve been cancelled in my own home… by my four YIP children

  • Steven R

    The last lines in the story Dave Ward linked to:

    So how do I deal with my YIPs? I’ve no magic solution, but I do find that smiling brightly and offering them a nice cup of tea is one way to put a dampener on their self-righteousness. No one can be cross for long when faced with a plate of biscuits. The small screams of exasperation I save for later, when no one can hear.

    Tell the 19 and 26 year olds to get out, today. They’ll still be outraged over everything, but at least you won’t be silenced in the home you’re paying for. And make sure you tell them, and the 15 year old, why you’re doing it.

    Go be outraged, but do it somewhere else.

  • Sam Duncan

    France used to have an entire airline with a monopoly on internal flights. One of the shareholders was the SNCF. From Wikipedia:

    SNCF, one of Air Inter’s two largest public sector shareholders, was also the company’s main competitor on domestic trunk routes inside France. This intensified when SNCF began high-speed, high-frequency Train à Grande Vitesse (TGV) services on purpose-built tracks from 1981.

    Hmm. Air Inter lost its monopoly in the early ’90s, and was absorbed into Air France in ’97, which, in turn, was denationalized a couple of years later. And… well… er… the SNCF’s stil state-owned, isn’t it?

    I’m sure they’re just trying to Save the Planet.

  • Kirk

    The really amusing thing is going to be watching these “Young Indoctrinated Pipsqueaks” try to administer the world or get anything done in it.

    We’ve allowed the schools and the culture to be taken over by ideologues who have never, ever faced the tests of reality. Reality bites; what doesn’t work, won’t work, no matter how hard you want it to.

    In the end, whose fault is it? I have to lay that at the door of the people who ran these institutions for decades, going back to the early “Progressives” like Woodrow Wilson, himself an administrator at a major US university. Whoever let him and his ilk at the levers of power bears the responsibility, I’m afraid.

    The other factor here is what I’ve been saying for years, now: The entire West is on the wrong damn track with this entire aspect of civilization. We’ve effectively put into place the same system that crippled the Chinese Imperial Dynasties, that of the Mandarin State. The only difference is, the Chinese were at least working off a decent philosophical system, that of Confucius. We’ve got whatever the flavor of the day is, and it shows.

    It’s the same syndrome, when you back up and look at the whole picture: Tests made proxies for virtue, selections and promotions based on tests. Authority stemming from an entirely delusional system of selection and training, which eventually augurs into the ground like an aircraft that’s lost one of its wings.

    The disconnect is that there is no feedback loop from reality saying “Yes, this worked… No, that did not…” into the system. It’s all test, select, educate based off those tests, test some more, school some more, and on and on until you get the numpties we have running things. Who’re never held accountable for their failures, and whose carefully-worded theories hold sway even in the face of total abject failure of their ideas and policies. Because, they all are convinced from childhood that the words they speak mean more than the reality around them; they are purely creatures of the diktat, and can conceive of nothing that might contradict the things they bring to reality with their words.

    You can see that very clearly when they talk about things like their beliefs. It’s not reality they are concerned with, it is instead what they perceive, what they say; they can countenance no contradiction because that would then call into question their entire worldview, which is absolutely reliant on their words creating reality around them.

    Students at one of the leading college preparatory schools in Chicago recently protested one of their administrators who vainly tried explaining to them that the uniform one of their fellows wore to a Halloween function was not, as they thought, a Nazi uniform. It was, instead, an East German Border Guards uniform. They still protested, calling for his removal, because they felt that they were right in identifying it as a Nazi uniform, never mind the facts.

    This is what we’ve trained up in the schools, my friends. It starts in the primary grades, with the teachers propagandizing, and it ends with the final product being unable to function as an independent, thinking human being when they graduate from college. We’re not educating; we’re indoctrinating. Any parent that allows their child to go to a school where the teachers are more concerned about inculcating the latest shibboleth about recycling and endangered species only has themselves to blame. Greta of the climate change scam is a perfect example of the problem; she’s been driven insane by the natterings of her teachers, to the point where she thinks she has God-like knowledge of how the world works, based on what she’s been taught by the propagandists.

    I’d laugh about the Nazi/East German thing, but… Wow. Irony is, the East German Border Guards ought to be looked at as being about as bad as concentration camp guards, but the truth is, if the idjits had known what they were really looking at, they’d have likely applauded it, ‘cos they like them some Socialism.

    Our educational system is to blame here, and the people who should rightly be worried about what it produces. We haven’t been watching, and while we weren’t, the academy was taken over by the nutters. We’re reaping what was being sown back when I was a child, and all I can say is this: I’m really, really glad that the distaste I developed for their delusional world kept me out of it, because I’d have probably become another Unabomber if I’d spent the time undergoing the educational processes they wanted me to.

    There’s an essential and inherent falsity to the academy, these days. You can’t avoid it, and the root fact is this: What they teach does not work.

    You have all the evidence before you, in the various delusional mandates made by the nutters we have running our politics: Here in my home state, they’ve passed legislation that says “No more fossil-fueled vehicles to be sold past date X”. Well and good; the rub here is that if you look to the inevitable requirements of that bit of fantasy legislation, they’re going to need to upgrade nearly every inch of the grid, with the commensurate requirement that they’re going to need a hell of a lot of copper or some new and as-yet-unknown technology to transmit power from as-yet-unbuilt generation capacity that they’ve signally failed to budget for or even make easier to build. Effectively, that initiative is going to die an ugly death when the facts come clear, namely that we can’t even begin to make it happen on the timeline they’ve laid out, and that the environmental damage we’d do making it happen would dwarf the current fossil-fuel system we have going. I can’t wait to see what they do when they realize that they’re going to have to put in a minimum of at least one 40 amp car charger in every house, and build out the grid to support that. It’s gonna be epic, and ugly… Hell, if they got started today with a crash program of utility upgrade and generation capacity build-out, they’d likely be completely unable to do it in the time they’ve allowed.

    Notably, there wasn’t any consultation with the engineers and technicians that would have to make this happen; they just threw a date at the wall, wrote out their little mandate, and haven’t done a damn thing to try and actually make it happen.

    Remember what I said about “creatures of the diktat“? These misguided children think that the words they speak in the real world have as much power as those they spoke in their old classrooms, and they’ve no idea at all about the hard work they’d have to do in order to realize the proud promise that they’ve spoken.

    This is the precise sort of thing that happens when you let your civilization be taken over by a Mandarin class. We only have ourselves to blame. Well, us and the assholes we let do it… I can’t make up my mind on whether or not they’re just that stupid, or if there’s a hidden conspiracy behind it all. I suspect, however, that they’re really that stupid. A conspiracy would have a plan with a chance of working, which these assclowns manifestly do not.

  • Kirk

    Meant to say this, and managed to rant well past making the point:

    I would not mind the idjit ideologues, if what they want and do worked. It manifestly does not.

    I may come off like a heartless bastard, discussing the current so-called “homeless problem” here in the US. I’m really not; I feel compassion for these people. Somewhat. Not so much when I’m scraping human feces off my feet, but enough that I feel bad seeing how they live.

    The thing is, however, that I also have the clarity of vision and honesty with myself to acknowledge that all the touchy-feely “feed the homeless” crap is not working; we’re not seeing a net reduction in these creatures of the night. What we’re doing is enablement, more than anything else, and all the feel-good programs the luvvies come up with are doing is making it easier and easier for people to live like that: “Smoke your rent; live in a tent…” is something I’ve actually seen as graffiti near homeless “encampments”.

    The various initiatives to “defund the police” and do away with the evils of “cash bail” are identically non-functional; they don’t do what it says on the tin. The ideas are ludicrous; you want to defund the police, the most effective way to do that is to make them irrelevant by reducing crime. You don’t defund them, and then somehow hope that that will magically reduce crime, because that’s not how it works.

    It’s magical thinking, all the way down to the bedrock with these people. And, they get that way because that’s how they were taught in the schools; Little Suzy was carefully taught to “care”, through senseless programs like recycling and concern about the poor, pitiful Polar Bear. And, her parents looked on, approving, never realizing the monster they were nurturing. What should have happened is that Little Suzy should have been taken down to the local recycling center and made to do the hard work of sorting all that trash, only to see it hauled off to the landfill because there’s no damn market for it; she should have been taken out to actually meet a Polar Bear in that bear’s natural environment, and gotten to watch it feeding on its prey, observe the males killing the cubs of other males, and all the rest of nature, red in tooth and claw.

    Instead, we brought up delusional Little Suzy on a steady diet of Bambi and Disney princesses, and we wonder why the silly little bint is super-gluing herself to our priceless cultural heritage. You want someone to blame? Look in the damn mirror.

  • Paul Marks

    Johnathan Pearce – good point, I had missed that. But what you are saying makes a lot of sense.

    Kirk – ranting is O.K.

    I have been close to out of my mind the past few days (with a mixture of anger and despair)- it is just as well I live alone.

  • mikesixes

    There’s no paradox here. When the government caves to their demands, the wackos see that their tactics are working, and they redouble their efforts in order to bring their Utopia into being more quickly. Meanwhile the government, seeking bribes from “clean energy” grifters, is more than happy to yield to their tantrums. Everybody, except sane taxpayers, is getting what they want.

  • Fraser Orr

    Just to be clear, France banned short haul flights for the ordinary folk. For those who have access to private jets it does not, of course, apply.

  • Kirk

    In the end, the whole thing will collapse into a welter of its own inherent and inescapable contradictions.

    What I can’t wait for is the spectacle of these bright lights hitting that light at the end of the tunnel, and realizing how thoroughly they’ve screwed themselves with all that they’ve done. “Oh… We can’t charge our electric cars because we refused to build the new generating capacity? We can’t feed our kids because we wanted everything grown organically with no GMO or fertilizer? Oh, the electrical grid is caving in on us because we didn’t allow anyone to mine the copper to build it out, or spend the money to actually do that? Oh, dear…”

    It will be epic. And, I would be laughing my ass off, but they’re dragging the rest of us along on their little excursion into fantasyland.

    Gods of the Copybook Headings, indeed.

  • Johnathan Pearce (London)

    Just to be clear, France banned short haul flights for the ordinary folk. For those who have access to private jets it does not, of course, apply.


  • Russell Weatherly

    You pay too much attention to the excuse. They are doing what they want, bullying people by being nasty little pricks. They just happened to have seized upon an excuse that they’ve gotten people to accept.

  • sonny wayz

    What we are seeing are the frustrations of those who crave membership of a cult and I think demonstrates the loss of any coherent philosophical anchor in their lives.

    An unfortunately recurring theme on David Thompson’s blog. Also Russell Weatherly’s comment on the desire to be nasty little pricks.

  • Kirk

    Perceptive little essay I’ll excerpt from:

    “Our governing elite are increasingly selected not for intelligence or ability, but for conscientious, agreeability and conformity. The consequence is a new kind of midwit tyranny.”


    Worth a read, and entirely in line with that which we are speaking of here.

    System’s broke, yo… Time to recognize that our “meritocratic elite” ain’t demonstrating much merit, or that they’re an elite. Although, they do pretty well as a confederacy of dunces.

  • johnd2008

    I discovered this morning that I am now able to offset the CO2 produced by my dog.Yes, if I pay someone some money, they will plant a tree to offset my pets lifetime emissions. Well, they are going to be waiting a long time to receive my donation.

  • John

    Donations are not necessary, your taxes will do nicely.

  • Paul Marks

    mikesixes – the government does not “cave into their demands”, the government education system and bureaucracy (and the ministers who are the front persons for the machine) are actively pushing this “narrative” themselves (and have for years)- this is not a “protest” movement, it is not opposing the “Green” narrative of the international establishment (the endless taxes and regulations), it is supporting that narrative – the “movement” is Astroturf, it is supported by the international establishment, both government and corporate.

    Kirk “it will end in collapse” – they want collapse, the basic purpose of international policy is collapse. Collapse, to them, “is not a bug – it is a feature”. Then, when there is economic and social collapse, the international establishment get the excuse to impose the totalitarian system, “digital currency” and all, that they crave. Control over ordinary people – reducing people to serfs in all but name.

    Surely Kirk you do not thing this is about C02? It is not about C02 – emissions of CO2 are just the latest excuse for what the international establishment (government and corporate) want to do anyway.

    If it was about C02 they would be massively denouncing the People’s Republic of China, refusing to buy goods made in China and-so-on.

    But they are doing nothing of the kind – indeed they all support “free trade” with China (as if the term “free trade” has any real meaning when dealing with a totalitarian “Social Credit score” regime).

    Indeed they, the international establishment, what a People’s Republic of China style Social Credit system in Western countries – that is what such things as the SEG (Social and Environemtal Governance system) are about – power and control. How else can they maintain their fiat money (Cantillon Effect) wealth and power – if a small elite are going to continue to dominate, they have-to go down this road.

    They, the international establishment, make no secret of this, they are quite open about their aims – yet people put their hands over their eyes and go around chanting “la, la, la”. Refusing to see or to hear.

  • Kirk

    The point is, Paul, that they think they’re going to benefit from triggering the collapse. They’re like that idiot standing there banging away at the bottom of the concrete grain silo, oblivious to the fact that when it all comes down, it’s coming down on top of them.

    They think it’s a ploy, and a brilliant one, believing that they are somehow immune to the effects they’re bringing about. Which they are not.

    Like I said… If they were competent, they wouldn’t be doing this. They aren’t, so it’ll be a spectacle. Sorta like the intellectual class that supported Pol Pot, in the cities of Cambodia, before he took over. Few of them survived, and indeed, were among his very first victims.

  • Alex

    Regarding the article about the kids “cancelling” their mother, she obviously crested the problem. She says that she and the daughter’s father tried to talk to her about the appropriateness of clothes once and were ‘scorched’. No wonder the girl think she can talk this way to her parents.

    If her phone and internet access privileges had been revoked for a few days she would soon have apologised and agreed to talk about the issue. But her kids, like so many today, have grown up believing that all they need to do is shout and argue and the parents will rollover.

    As for the older kids, kick them out. Can’t keep a civil tone or live and let live, they need to learn the hard way that they have nothing without their parents. If they find their feet and leave home, good. If not, a few days sleeping on a friends sofa or a park bench should work miracles for their agreeableness.

  • Kirk

    I’m of the opinion that a lot of the problems with modern Western societies begin with the very most basic of social relationships: Parenting.

    There are fewer kids born, these days, and the little darlings are treated as though they were the lords of creation from birth. They never encounter duty, they never encounter responsibility, and they never get taught that they’re born into a web of duties and obligations that they have to fulfill from birth. It’s all about them, their self-gratification, and whatever they want. Which, they feel, their parents and society are there to provide for them. They see “obligation” as a one-way thing: From others, to them. They’re raised to be self-entitled brats from the womb onwards, and that’s precisely what they are.

    Few kids aren’t raised like this, today. The really bizarre part about it all is that, for many of them, their parents were not raised like this. As late as the 1970s, things were close enough to the bone that you knew you had to contribute; I think my generation may have been one of the last to be raised to feel like that. Today’s kids are more the “Gimme, gimme” mob, who think they “give back” by putting up a Tik-Tok video of them unboxing their latest toy. Which Mom and Dad paid for…

    You can’t build a lasting social structure on people like this, not without hugely destructive effects. There’s no sense of duty, no sense of service to others; it’s all self-service and gratification for most of them.

    And, it comes down to the life-experience we’ve given them, the parenting. You wonder who tore down Western Civ? Don’t look at the kids who joined Antifa and Black Bloc, look in the damn mirror: Who raised up these vipers? Yes; you did.

  • Paul Marks

    Yes Kirk, the international establishment do think they will benefit from the collapse – that it will allow them to establish the totalitarian system of world governance, that they crave. The system they want has more in common with the ideas of Saint-Simon (the early 19th century French Collectivist) than Karl Marx – but when there is a boot on one’s neck, the colour of the boot does not much matter.

    You are also correct that the family, and civil society generally, has fallen apart. Not everywhere, for example most of Utah is still fairly sound in terms of family structure and so on (although Salt Lake City is not).

    This is the great difference between America in the 1930s and America today – the economy collapsed in the 1930s, and it is going to collapse again, but in the 1930s basic American SOCIETY was sound – personal behaviour and family life, now society is a total mess.

    And that is true of the United Kingdom and other nations as well.

    Economic collapse when society, personal behaviour and family structure, is a mess – well that is something much worse than the 1930s.

  • Regarding the article about the kids “cancelling” their mother, she obviously crested the problem. (Alex, November 11, 2022 at 1:24 pm)

    Responsibility for their kids’ common behaviour may come from the parents indirectly, not just (or even mainly) directly. For example, could the parents’ choice of school be a key factor. Like any cult, woke teachers that want their indoctrination to stick will encourage, even train, the propagandised kids to resist counter-argument as best they can. Teaching them never even to tolerate hearing a counter-argument is an obvious move. Choosing such a school would indeed have been an error on the parent’s part, sure, but one made a long time ago when perhaps the school was less woke than it is now.

    And there again, much responsibility for the kids’ behaviour might come from – the kids themselves. Whatever they were taught, deliberately by teachers and unwittingly by parents, they chose what to learn and not learn.

    I assume the article itself is their mother’s latest attempt to talk to them. Will their determination never to listen to her extend to never-reading-it? I doubt they have that kind of self-control. And of course many of their acquaintance will read it, and some may mock them. It’s one way to attempt to start them thinking.

  • Steven R

    It doesn’t really matter what or who created the problem of the childrens’ behaviors. What’s done is done. The parents need to grow a backbone and tell the two that are over 18 to hit the road. No one should be silenced in their own home that they pay for.

    The kids can still be outraged at the world, but they can do it somewhere else.

  • Steven R (November 11, 2022 at 10:43 pm), it may be relevant that the mother is a therapist – trained to respond to difficult clients calmly, to enraging clients sympathetically, and above all not to laugh when the self-pitying client is unwittingly ridiculous. When she should have been helping their characters form, she may have made the terrible mistake of treating her children as if they were her patients.

  • Bruce

    Kirk; you posted:

    “The really amusing thing is going to be watching these “Young Indoctrinated Pipsqueaks” try to administer the world or get anything done in it.”

    I am not sure if “amusing” is the right word.

    The “model” which these psychopaths most admire is that of the”purest” socialist government thus far inflicted on humanity; the Khmer Rouge.

    Because that demonic regime was the plaything of the CCP, the realities of its behaviour have been systematically “memory-holed” / “cancelled”.