RCoA and his lovely GF observed Earth Hour tonight at 8:30pm by turning off the lights for one hour. RCoA’s two cats are mostly unaffected, except that Cat #2’s heating blanket is being turned off as well. The other cat doesn’t use electricity. Cities, villages and towns across the world are taking advantage of this event to vocalize their feelings about global warming and the future of worldwide energy. For me it’s a statement against our voracious appetites for energy. In my humble domicile, I am also attempting to reduce other electrical usage in the hut where practical. The folks at EarthHour.org did, for example, encourage bloggers to write live posts about their event, which we would be unable to do if we turned off our routers and DSL modems. I opted to use my laptop battery to power my internets. That should cut down a few watts over the hour… Dare I pull the plug on the refrigerator too? Why not.
I’m aware of Earth Hour counter-protesters. I couldn’t really find a cogent argument for why they were doing it, except just to be contrary and to mock the “sheeples.” It’s sort of ironic if the core of your enlightened protest against the sheeples is to do exactly the opposite of what they say. Kinda makes you a knee-jerk anti-sheeple, and I’m not sure which is worse. Most of the sites I accessed seemed to be run either by ultra-conservatives or the anti-Illuminati. The ultra-conservatives usually have their hackles up against anything even remotely liberal, and that’s fair, I guess. Earth Hour seems like a fairly left-wing idea so I guess I understand where they’re coming from. They’re being consistent. But some members of the conservative groups also vocalized tangential protests, like how they would turn on the engines of their gas guzzlers and burn a few steaks on the bbq and smoke cigars as double, triple and quadruple protest! Wow. You tell those liberals! The anti-Illuminati types seemed to be against participating in environmental issues because it is a form of mind-control and possibly a mechanism of that dark New World Order spook. Oh, and there was a presence from the Ayn Rand disciples who essentially perceive Earth Hour to be a suppression of the symbolic achievements mankind has made from cave to skyscraper. An hour of elective darkness against millions of years of mankind? I don’t get the comparison.
I’m not a scientist and I don’t have access to the global warming statistics, nor would I know how to interpret them convincingly enough to counter all arguments from either of the groups mentioned above. I do know that America is a gluttonous country that seems to be progressing and consuming far quicker than its infrastructure will allow. Energy has a cost no matter how it is produced, and wasting any bit of it is foolish. Burning coal, a finite resource, to produce electricity is neither a good long-term solution to America’s energy needs nor is it conducive to clean air. I don’t understand how turning on more lights in protest of EarthHour is going to add to national coal stockpiles. Moot if you don’t live in a coal region maybe, but valid if you do. And if you are one of the stogie-puffing chest-thumpers who are snarkily igniting your sport-futility vehicle engines to teach the liberals a lesson, your point has been made, and kudos to you for being wealthy enough to take last year’s ridiculous gas prices on the chin, or to eagerly and freely donate the lives of your corn-fed youth to fight oil wars so that you can retain your god-given right to drive your over-powered urban assault vehicles.
Environmentalism as religion is no good, I agree. Environmentalism for many is nothing more than a personal sport and it has roots in the old camping rule, that you leave your campsite in the same or better condition than you found it. The wastrels don’t understand that, and that’s why many Americans hate camping alongside you.
[c] 2009 Russ of America