Mr. Crankypants is so pleased that Al Gore has won the Nobel Peace Prize. What self-respecting liberal isn’t? All the conservative pundits are foaming at the mouth, rabidly furious at the thought that some crazy Swedes (who are probably Commies anyway) dared to give any kind of public recognition to Evil Al, the Climate Change Kid. Mr. Crankypants just loves the thought of conservative pundits foaming rabidly at the mouth.
However. While Mr. Crankypants is amused at his effect on conservative pundits, Mr. C. thinks Al Gore has missed a key point. The world doesn’t really need carbon offsets. The world doesn’t really need that Kyoto treaty they all talk about. The world doesn’t even really need hybrid automobiles. What the world really needs is about five and a half billion fewer human beings.
Stanley Schmidt makes this point in the November, 2007, issue of the magazine Analog: Science Fiction and Fact: “If population continues to increase, it will overwhelm any per capita decrease we make in any of the problematic variables associated with it, like resource use, increase in greenhouse gases, and other forms of pollution.” Elementary arithmetic will show you that this is a true statement. Schmidt goes on to make this statement: “All places will need to think about controlling population growth. It will be controlled, sooner or later, whether because of voluntary restraint, government-imposed limits, or catastrophic collapse because a stability limit has been passed.”
Three options: (a) voluntary restraint, (b) government-imposed limits, or (c) catastrophic collapse. Which one of these do you think is the most politically palatable option? Which option do you think Al Gore would choose? Remember that Al Gore has not publicly advocated for either voluntary population restraint, or for government controls on population growth. Therefore, if you chose (c), catastrophic collapse, as the preferred political option for controlling population growth, you are correct! Your prize will be ocean-front property in the state of Arkansas.
And which of those three options do you think is the most religiously palatable option for most of the world? A few religious liberals would vote for option (a), voluntary restraint of population growth — indeed, some religious liberals deliberately limit their offspring to one, or adopt children rather than procreate themselves, or have no children at all, as a matter of religious principle. But most of the world’s religions seem to prefer option (c), catastrophic collapse — presumably under the untested theory that their deity/deities, or other supernatural power, will come to rescue them.
Mr. Crankypants doesn’t want this to be completely depressing. So he will point out some more good news — after the sea level rises, Arizona might just have oceanfront property as well!