On authorities spewing crap

There may be bad things to say about ‘youngsters’ uttering rude/naive/silly remarks, but those bad things fade compared to established, respected authorities spewing crap.

Doris Lessing, in her otherwise beautiful Nobel Prize acceptance speech, famously remarked:

How will our lives, our way of thinking, be changed by the internet, which has seduced a whole generation with its inanities so that even quite reasonable people will confess that, once they are hooked, it is hard to cut free, and they may find a whole day has passed in blogging etc?

Just stick to what you are good at, writing novels.

Today, James Lovelock, esteemed scientist and inventor of the Gaia theory, came out with a whole barrage of arrogant and potentially damaging ‘opinions‘. In summary: contemporary natural scientists are morally inferior to those back in the good old days, the world is screwed, we pulled the trigger and there is nothing to do about it but to sit back and “enjoy life while you can”. Oh, and also, renewable energy technology is not based on “good practical engineering”.

That is an awful lot of nonsense/sweeping generalisations to let out for a 90-year-old!

Ah, but it all depends on if he is right, does it not?

Not really… He may indeed be right about the fate of the planet.

But. Hopefully, many of us will have another +40 years or so to live in before we pass away. In that time, we would probably like to be able to enjoy nature, fresh air and many other things. Ideally, our children would be able to do that as well. Why should we not make every effort – and encourage others to do so – to make this possible? Lovelock is writing out a dangerous carte blanche (‘keep on truckin’ y’all!’) with ramifications far beyond ‘climate change’.

Just because you are on board Titanic, you can still be considerate.

In addition to that, I believe hope and optimism are core to leading a happy, fulfilling life, even in the face of adversity and uncertainty. Of course, when you are 90 years old and already made quite a career for yourself that may not be the case…

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