The Republican controlled Senate voted 50-49 that climate change is not caused by humans. These people are the modern day version of those that persecuted Galileo for saying that the earth went around the sun. Unfortunately for us, these climate deniers’ folly is going to doom a lot of people around the globe. Their ignorance will destroy lives. It is easy to look back at history in disbelief at people believing that the sun revolved around the earth. But that same kind of mindset is with us now. It is created by the same thing: Power that does not want to be challenged. The church didn’t want their authoritarian power being challenged. Today it is the fossil fuel companies who don’t want their power to make money to be challenged. The politicians that voted that climate change was not caused by humans derive their power from the fossil fuel companies. They are bought and paid for. Every major scientific institution has made the case for human caused climate change. The facts are not up in the air, they are just inconvenient to some of those that have a great deal of power. One day they will look as foolish as the church of Galileo’s time does now. Hopefully there will be a civilization around that can afford to laugh at them.
Bloomberg has an interesting article that claims that in the long term there is no doubt that fossil fuels will lose the race with renewable energy. A sample:
The price of wind and solar power continues to plummet, and is now on par or cheaper than grid electricity in many areas of the world. Solar, the newest major source of energy in the mix, makes up less than 1 percent of the electricity market today but will be the world’s biggest single source by 2050, according to the International Energy Agency.
The problem seems to not be if, but when. Can we transition fast enough to avoid the worst problems associated with climate change.
Still, this is good news. I’ll take it where I can get it…
Going camping in the Texas hill country tonight, so this is probably me signing off for the day. The Texas hill country is stunningly beautiful and looks nothing like what myself, and many who have visited, imagined when we think of Texas. Tuscany in Italy is the closest landscape I can think of. It is usually a deep green full of medium sized trees and rolling hills. I have been all over the world and live oak trees are aome of the most beautiful I can think of. They look like they were created with children playing in mind. There is something warm and comforting in the hill country’s beauty. Many beautiful places in nature overwhelm you with their scope. They can leave you feeling small and lonesome even as you stare in wonder. Meanwhile the hill country is inviting and fills you with a sense of safety, even if it is sometimes probably misplaced. If you are a traveler, and haven’t yet been to central Texas, Google the Texas hill country. I think you will be surprised by what you see.
I just checked out Huffington Post to see the latest news. I think if anything Huffington Post is a good place just to check headlines as it is comprehensive, even if many of the articles themselves are not worth reading. The front page headline is about the European plane crash. 150 people died. While this is tragic and horrifying, and definitely sensational, one must keep in mind that 457 people have been killed in just the state of Texas on the highway this year. Maybe this is news, but it is not front page, top of the page news. If it is news, and I mean this in no way disrespectfully of those who might have lost loved ones in the crash, it is something that should be acknowledged for a brief amount of time and moved on from. I wish this accident hadn’t happened at all, but since it did, that it was the worst thing that we had to deal with. However, given the conflicts that are taking place around the globe, the environmental calamities that are threatening us, and the fact that so many people still exist in a constant state of poverty, let alone many other tragedies that are happening all around us on a regular basis, this is distorting our perception of the world.
Wizard Ted Cruz says that global warming alarmists are the equivalent of flat-earthers. It would be easy to get angry about this, except we already know Cruz is saying this to whip people like myself into a frenzy all while appealing to his know-nothing base. I feel pretty confident that people like Ted Cruz, as harmful as they are, are the exact kind of people that are going to doom the modern Republican Party and its anti-science brigade to the history books. I’m scared about what damage they can do on the way down, but there is no doubt that Ted Cruz and his ilk represent the last gasp of a dying order. People become extreme and rabid when they feel something slipping away forever. Ted Cruz, even though he is appealing to the hoopleheads*, really represents unfettered corporate power combined with religious zealotry. Fortunately for us, in a democracy even such power needs a base to support it and that base is mostly old and white on and on the outs. What’s scary though is that we are running out of time to stave off the worst impacts of climate change. So while Ted Cruz and those he represents will not be with us for long, they just might be able to do enough damage to doom the rest of us and the descendants of the human race for a long time to come. So while I don’t think we need to worry much about Ted Cruz, I think those of us that care need to fight his ideas at every turn.
*Hooplehead: a member of the ignorant masses; an uneducated commoner; an idiot. word popularized by HBO’s Deadwood.
Earlier today I wrote about how the media often distorts what Americans should really be concerned about. This is especially true when dealing with thetas that face the American people. The above article gives a list of what Americans are afraid of. In this country we are incredibly concerned about terrorism, which comes in at number three on the list, but not climate change, which comes in at last as things listed on this list. What’s so absurd about this is that Americans had about one in 20 million chance of being killed by a terrorist in a study done in 2010. Meanwhile everyone is going to be affected by climate change in some way.
The above link is to an article about how Costa Rica, for their electricity, have only used renewable energy since the beginning of this year. The country is currently meeting around 94% of it’s total energy needs from renewable. Some of the reasons that they are able to do this are unique to Costa Rica. However, this goes to show that there is no reason that the United States can’t do much more that we are currently doing, which is generating roughly 13% of our electricity from renewable sources.