We are all of this Earth, and, save for an apocalyptic few, we all want to preserve it. Why, then, have the rational and pragmatic allowed the basic concept of caring for our planet to be hijacked by the functioning contradiction that is the Radical Opportunist?
One part hysteria, one part greed, with a liberal sprinkling of impracticality, the Radical Opportunist is a beast not to be underestimated. They are the crazy ex-girlfriend you don't remember dating. Anything they say can and will be used against you in their court of no appeals. Facts? No need. Opposing views? Who has the time? There is only enough space on their high horse for them to froth at the mouth and tell us all that we are all going to be under water in five...no, ten...wait...fifteen years!
And this is all our fault.
I have always been a student of fallacies. One can uncover them, brush them off, and remove them from an opponent's rhetoric like a kind of hollow argument paleontologist. The global warming crowd has developed (fairly recently) a variation on one of my favorite relativist fallacies: If-By-Whiskey. Named after a speech given by Noah S. Sweat in 1952, this subjective fallacy usually functions as a way to cover every base/hedge your bets/agree with contradictory evidence/overall cherry-pick all positive elements of any argument as your own. The Gore crew has tweaked this to create an argument that doesn't try to surgically remove inconvenient data nor ignore unfitting phenomenon; rather, they simply include every possible contingency as part of their new agenda. If by climate change you mean warming, then yes. If by climate change you mean cooling, then yes. See? Easy.
Climates change -- undeniable. Man creates pollution -- fact. Humanity damaged the ozone layer, and then made changes to allow it to repair itself -- a triumphant lesson learned. That said, shouldn't I be typing this from under a few feet of water? Why are my socks still dry? Because going back to the new If-By-Climate-Change model, ocean tides not rising is climate change. (It must also be pointed out that if the tides had actually risen, that, too, would be climate change.) No warming for 16 years? Extended periods of temperature flat-lining is the very definition of climate change. Didn't you know that? How simple it continues to be! A is A, B is A -- as well as every other letter in the alphabet!
You see, it was shortly after the smash success of Al Gore's so-called documentary An Inconvenient Truth that Radical Opportunists faced a brick wall of their own fabrication. They had preached about global cooling in the 1970s, they had witnessed about global warming over the following two decades, and then something happened -- nothing. So they decided to rebrand themselves as the Chicken Littles of the new crisis that was all the West's fault: "climate change." And it worked -- at least for a little while.
Then, slowly, more and more people who had bought scuba gear and fan boats and who had studied Costner's magnum opus Waterworld began to feel cheated. Why had they bought all those solar-powered coffee-makers and organic windshield-wipers if the end of the world was not nigh after all? Things looked bleak for those who love to make things look bleak.
Your local Trader Joe's clerk began to panic; the entire town of Concord, MA was heard to wail at the statue of Maurice Strong that I am just going to assume they have in their town center; and Al Gore began to fear that there wasn't a single oil money-backed TV network that would buy anything from him -- ever! But he (and the omnipresent "they") showed us. If you want a bigger party, build a bigger tent. And they did.
The irony is, I might be called a secret hippie. I have a compost bin, I clean up litter along the forest trails I frequent with my dog, and hell -- I'm even thinking about purchasing a solar-powered generator. (The shock of it all!) This is why the environmental movement angers me so. Don't cry wolf about something so serious. These people are the Green Party equivalents to those who file fraudulent rape charges after a night of drunken regret. One cannot undo that type of damage to a serious issue. Lies rust away the truth. Hyperboles break the backs of those with good intentions.
So, to close, allow me to communicate directly with the few (if any) Mother Jones readers out there: we all must work to help-out our planet, for it is all any of us has to call home. With that said, we non-lunatics all must work to make sure that you, who would donate your bodies to hemp science, are forced to double down on your bet. If it's global warming, then global warming it is. You said mankind is causing the Earth to overheat, so focus on that. I will not allow you to change the banner to which you flock mid-battle.
Has the weather been crazy lately? Yup. Is it half as crazy as you ideologues who strive to calm it? Nope. Whatever is going on, I have no idea. And let's face it: neither do you.