A Few Words About Climate Change & Blame.
Here’s the thing. I have been working hard to pay attention to all the shit going on in the world. Extra hard since I moved out of Toronto, because I have had more time.
The conclusion that I am able to draw from all this paying attention is that the world is a fucking mess.
Personally, my life isn’t all that messy. Not yet. My wife and I have worked hard to get our ducks in a row. We play by the rules. Do as much of the right stuff as we can. Try like hell to be good citizens.
And we’re not alone. I live in a small city now where there are a lot of people like us. People who worked hard all their adult lives and are kicking back a bit and trying to enjoy the fruits of their labours.
We are the early boomers. And frankly, we’re the ones who are catching all the shit for the way things have gotten so fucked up.
We could have done this...We should have done that...We were selfish and didn’t think about what life would be like for future generations.
It’s one thing to throw that kind of crap around. But it’s quite another to drill down and try and understand why things happened the way they did.
Yeah, we benefited from all the hard work that our parents did to build the industries we worked in. I worked in advertising and did my bit to keep the wheels of commerce turning. My wife worked in the music business to help keep people entertained.
And our stories aren’t all that different from most people our age. We did the best with the information we had. Sure, we were all working for the man and we all know that the man was getting rich off our labours.
But we didn’t resent that. We knew that was just the way the system worked, and if you were entrepreneurial, you could get out there and become the man yourself and have other people working for you and make big bucks and all that good shit.
In my work, I interacted a lot with various levels of government and back in the 70s and 80s. There were a lot of good people there, working hard to make sure that some sort of balance was maintained. Any corruption there was was very well hidden and the ways to uncover it were quite limited.
We had a good life, and when it was time to have kids, my wife was able to be a full time mom and make sure they were raised the best they could be. I did a lot of extra work on top of my job to help make that happen, and it did. And we don’t regret a fucking thing.
But now, the boomers are catching a lot of flak for the way things are in industry especially, now that climate change is a reality and the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is getting to a critical level.
I don’t want to sound like I’m wimping out here, but that was not my responsibility. I was, like the vast majority of us, way down the food chain and even if we had gotten all political about whatever shit was going on regarding the business operations of our clients or employers, we would have been out on our asses. Period.
But all that aside, this was not stuff that we thought about in any sort of universal way. We were kept too busy just doing our jobs, raising our families and spinning gold for the owners that nobody really got all that political about stuff that had to do with the environment.
Even the labour movement seldom if ever talked about pollution control. Because they knew, I assume, that the money it would take for the mass adaptation of environmental controls would have most assuredly come from the wages and jobs of their members.
The best I could do personally was to get myself onto accounts like the Non-Smoker’s Rights Association and Pollution Probe, and try and make a some sort of difference that way. But back then, all of this was in its very early days and the public education job that was required was massive.
And honestly, even though I became fairly literate about pollution and its potential ramifications, hardly anyone, except the extreme alarmists in my generation, ever really believed that it would get to the point where this pollution could actually affect the climate. It was just not a connection that people made back then.
There was no real unified climate change movement that we knew of. In fact those two words were seldom, if ever used in the same sentence, even by the Pollution Probe people.
But now, here we are counting down to the time when the air will become unbreathable, the oceans will rise, the storms will become more cataclysmic and the amount of human suffering will increase exponentially. Or so we are told.
And why is this happening?
In hindsight, it's very simple really. Once the so called Titans of Industry realized that all the shit they were doing was starting to really fuck up the environment, they also realized that they would have to go through a massive retooling to get their businesses under control. This would be very expensive for a lot of mid-sized businesses and very inconvenient for the shareholders of the larger businesses.
So instead of investing what they needed to invest in pollution control systems and better operational and recycling methods, they invested considerably less and bought politicians. A big win for them. A big loss for the planet.
And now here we are on the edge of extinction. Because, as the great George Carlin pointed out…they just wanted to keep you smart enough to do the work, but dumb enough not to question their motives. Because once you develop any level of critical thinking, the first thing you will realize is just how badly you are being fucked over and just how much shit these so called Titans of Industry are getting away with. All in the name of greed.
So you can blame us all you want. It doesn’t really mean much these days, because there is just fucking chaos everywhere you look.
But I will say this. If there had been a recognizable organized movement back when I was a lot younger and this problem was a lot smaller, I don't believe it would have gotten much support because of the level of ignorance about the subject and the fear people would have about losing their livlihoods of they became active insuch a movement.
The best we can hope for these days is that a lot of industries will start to be held more accountable, not by governments, because they’re all fucked anyway, but by banks, venture capitalists and investment groups, who have more influence over these industries than any politician ever could.
I’m trying to be optimistic about a situation that looks on the surface to be a day late and a dollar short. But wondrous things are happening every day, and it’s up to all of us to recognize and support them the best we can.
Anybody who is a climate change denier these days is either a fool, or totally owned by the fossil fuel, and coal industries.