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Dry Season

Felix Dennis
March 24, 2006
Mandalay, Mustique
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A sun-baked cedar leaf scrapes by my chair;
In dappled shade I stroke the parent’s bole
And scoop its leather offspring to my care:
A cast out victim: symptom of the whole—
The dead dry days are passing in a rush;
The world is topsy-turvy.  Seasons lie,
And what should be a desert now is lush,
While back in England arid snowdrops die.
The wisest of the wise debate a cause,
Man-made— or else some cycle of the sun;
Yet nature shuns indifferent applause
For causes; what is done has long been done.
  Come now, my friends, the change, perhaps, is real,
  But let us break no ‘traitors’ on the wheel!

Many environmental fundamentalists (eco-Nazis, I call ‘em) are quick to point the finger and swift with their doom-mongering advice.  Let them read this, a précis in ‘The Week’ magazine August 31, 2007 from an original article in ‘The Boston Globe’:  

“If there’s anything climate-change crusaders are adamant about,” writes Jeff Jocoby, “it is that the science of the matter is settled.”  But it’s not.  In fact, science’s view of how the climate will be affected by green-house gas emissions “changes all the time,” with some very reputable scientists questioning whether a man-made disaster is looming at all. NASA administrator Michael Griffin recently pointed out that the climate has been fluctuating for millennia, and that it’s arrogant to assume we now possess “the optimal climate.”   Scientists recently admitted that their understanding of future sea-level rises is “limited,” and dropped estimates from the catastrophic 3 feet trumpeted by Al Gore to 17 inches.  This month, climate scientists had to admit that 1998 was not the hottest year on record after all— 1934 was.  After an error was found in previous data, in fact, it turns out that five of the hottest years in the U.S. occurred before 1940, with only three in the last decade.  Do this mistakes mean global warming is entirely a myth?  No, but it does mean that “the science of climate change is still young and unsettled,” with years of trial and error ahead of us.

I am not saying we should do nothing.  But I argue strongly that the rantings and terror tactics of eco-Nazi crusaders is counter-productive, as well as suspect in its motive.  Beware of Jeremiahs.  The world is as full of them today as it has always been.  Perhaps it makes them feel important to make the flesh of others creep and to boss us about.  But let us remember this: they know little more than we— and many know a damn sight less.