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Manual for screwing the Earth – Part two: Strategies (ii)

By Elizabeth Dangerfield  

Continued from Manual for screwing the Earth – Part two: Strategies (i)

Strategy Two – Create a Parallel Universe

Remember the movie Back to the Future 2 where Biff goes back to the past, buys a racing almanac, returns to the future, and uses it to bet on horse races to become one of the richest men on the planet? He creates a parallel universe, one that is dystopian for all but sociopathic Biff. Creating an alternative universe where black is white and white is black is a really good tactic for screwing the Earth. The only real prerequisite for this alternative construction of the truth is that you need to be able to lie ruthlessly and convincingly. Fortunately, people rarely challenge what they want to hear and they really like strong leaders in uncertain times.

A few white lies didn’t hurt anyone, right? People seem to have no qualms about posting lies on social media. President Trump uses lies very effectively to convince people that the truth is fake news. Three years after taking the oath of office, President Trump has made more than 16,200 false or misleading claims. This is a great strategy if you want to screw the Earth, because the only way to save the Earth is to face up to the reality that is the truth. So, you want to practice being audacious and blatant. After all, it has been said by an expert liar, that if you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.

The good thing about lies is that they are endlessly modifiable. So, start with the most brazen – the Earth is not warming up at all! We are overdue for another Ice Age so don’t worry. If that doesn’t go down too well, try – the Earth has gone through periods of global warming before – it’s all part of the great cycle of life. A geologist or two are quite happy to bang on about this, as is Donald Trump who has made it very clear; “It’ll get cooler. It’ll get warmer. It is called weather.” That should fit in well with people’s idea of the seasons.

Image from churchandstate.org.uk

With all those maximum temperature records being broken people might just become a bit suspicious so you could try – the Earth is warming up, but this has nothing to do with humans. This is a very important lie because if global warming is not caused by humans then we do not have to worry about continuing to use fossil fuels and we can continue to exploit every possible resource on the planet.

Some people might begin to make a bit of a fuss about the continued use of fossil fuels so you could say – maybe greenhouse gases building up in the atmosphere are a problem but we can’t stop using fossil fuels because it would absolutely wreck our economy, put thousands and thousands of good people out of work overnight and renewables are unreliable – they cause blackouts.

Of course, those bad bushfires were a bit of a bummer but you can say – We have had bad bushfires, droughts and dryness and storms before, not to mention very high temperatures – what is happening now is nothing new. Okay, we may be experiencing climate change just a tad – there is no dispute!!! But it is easy to deal with, we will just burn all the undergrowth in all our forests, create deserts around towns, arrest all the arsonists and ban greenies. We are doing enough to reduce emissions and now we just have to adapt and show resilience. Not only that, climate change should be embraced it is good for us, so be happy.

Of course you have to be really superb at ignoring the facts and immensely talented at telling falsehoods to get away with so many big lies because there are so many experts, climate scientists, reputable bodies, well regarded organisations and even the saint of all biologists, David Attenborough, coming out and insisting that climate change is happening, humans are causing it, it is already causing a lot of damage and it is going to be disastrous for the world.

So, this is where you need to bring out your big guns – Scientists, scientific organisations, the United Nations, NASA and similar bodies are all liars and deceivers. They are part of the big climate cult conspiracy – all of them. Nothing they say about climate change can be believed. Not only that they are all in it for the money. David Attenborough is so old he has gone daft – been living with the gorillas for too long. But don’t worry we are onto them.

It is easy to discredit scientists, just troll through all their work until you find a mistake. Then you say – told you so, you can’t trust them. They only have to be wrong 0.1% of the time to be discredited but you can be wrong 99.9% of the time and people will still believe you. Another trick that works a treat is to misquote the work of a scientist or quote it out of context. You can use that to say black is white and white is black before the scientist knows what has hit them.

You can also say you are doing one thing when in actual fact you are doing the exact opposite. Take a leaf out of Mr Morrison book he says his government is doing really well at reducing emissions and will meet the Paris Agreement targets in a canter which is the opposite of what we are actually doing.

Then of course you just have to get one scientist to come out as a climate denier and you are home and hosed. They don’t have to be a climate scientist they just have to wear a white coat. It is staggering what people will accept. One climate denying scientist’s opinions is worth more than the combined opinion of 11,000 experts in climate change.

You can grab onto one fact and use it to discredit a whole institution. For example, you can find temperature records from colonial Australia in 1896 which show some very high maximum temperatures. Therefore, you can say that the climate in Australia has been as hot as it is now for over a century and the Bureau has deliberately falsified the facts by not counting recordings made before 1910. It matters not to you that the temperatures were recorded in the sun, that thermometers were hung in different places depending of the whims of the recorders, that standard recording equipment was not uniform and properly used until after the turn of the century. Who cares about scientific method and the complexity of an issue if you can just seize on one figure to convince Australians that meteorologists are liars!

It is like living in medieval Italy where the thought that the Earth revolved around the Sun and not vice a versa was so inconvenient and so disturbing to the powers-that-be that they would have tortured and no doubt burnt at the stake the greatest scientist of the age if he had not recanted his outrageous and unwanted views. Maybe we need the Spanish Inquisition. Don’t worry the following strategy will show that we are going down that path.

Continued tomorrow with Manual for screwing the Earth – Part two: Strategies (iii)

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  1. Pingback: Manual for screwing the Earth – Part two: Strategies (ii) #newsoz.org #auspol - News Oz

  2. Ill fares the land

    If you look at the last 4 Ice Ages (the last ending around 12,000 years ago), plotted as temperature and over the last 400,000 years, the Earth’s temperature has followed a clearly recognisable pattern; to the point where you could take one Ice Age “section” and superimpose it over another, they would virtually be the same, and largely indistinguishable. Indistinguishable that is until you get to the last few hundred years.

    One of the key features of the graph is that when temperatures peak and then start to decline, the transition is really rapid, possibly in as little as a few hundred years and then global temperatures drop rapidly initially and then the rate slows until we get to a temperature nadir, at which point temperatures rise quite rapidly. But this time, whilst the rate of temperature rise largely reflects previous Ice Ages, global temperatures are tending now to “level out” more, all the while tending to rise. The graphs suggest that we were not far off heading into another Ice Age, but the graph behaviour now is extremely unusual compared to past Ice Ages and it would appear that instead of heading into another Ice Age, earth temperatures are doing something very different – and the single most likely causative factor is the dramatic post-industrialisation rise in CO2 levels.

    Small problem – at both the macro and the micro level, few are really committed to changing their behaviours.

    Governments like the LNP rabble refuse to acknowledge climate change and will continue to lie about the reality that confronts them.

    This suits many individuals, who are driving urban streets in gas-guzzling and high-polluting “trucks” – of any 100 people in sedans who go to buy a new car tomorrow, about 45% will buy an SUV or a dual-cab ute. Any government that tried to price these wasteful vehicles (they are not cars) off the roads would likely be committing political suicide – but as a transition to electric/hybrid cars as the dominant vehicle, how about discouraging people from buying woefully inappropriate vehicles for everyday use. How about amending the tax and fringe benefit tax laws to remove the FBT exemption for dual cab utes (because, so the reasoning went, tradies use them). Well, the availability of an FBT exemption (economically equivalent to a tax deduction for 100% of your private mileage) has only encouraged many, many non-tradies to buy such vehicles.

    But more generally, we live beyond the means of our planet (western countries consume about 3 to 4 times more per person than the planet can cope with), but still expect governments to work miracles and do all of the work to reduce emissions. We, on the other hand, want to be able to traverse the globe in cruise ships that pollute both the air and the water and travel to far-flung exotic locations so we can boast to our friends about how superior we are. We want to have fridges the connect to the internet (WTF?).

    We listen gratefully when governments like the LNP proclaim they have “achieved” increases in GDP, so let’s pat them on the back for their miraculous economic management, when the reality is that we have long passed a tipping point – whenever any western nation reports higher GDP, it is invariably at the expense of the earth – our over-consumption measured as GDP uses up more resources than are really available if the earth is to replenish itself. There is the point that as GDP’s have risen globally over the last 40 years or so, more people are now living in poverty, especially in western countries – what does that tell you about rises in GDP as a measure of “well-offness”? Unless and until individuals, industry AND governments work as a collective, little will change and every indication is it is already past a point of no return.

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