The environmentalists have of course been greatly aided by having an entire U.N. bureaucracy working on their behalf. And a gullible, scientifically and economically illiterate, left-biased media keen on sensational headlines doesn’t hurt their cause either. Nor does a phalanx of sympathetic Hollywood stars which, if Oscar nominations mean anything, includes Al Gore and his "An Inconvenient Truth" scary climate catastrophe flick.
Agitprop in the classrooms
A key component of the environmentalists' propaganda strategy is the education system. From K-on-up the system is heavily dominated by unionized ‘educators’ who have, for decades now, been very well indoctrinated in socialist utopianism. There can be little doubt that the system has a strong left-inclined bias. So pushing environmental causes comes quite naturally to them. In his excellent column in today’s National Post, Peter Foster emphasizes this angle. Beginning with an anecdote about his daughter’s Grade 6 class viewing Al Gore’s PG-rated movie, he highlights the role of the school system in promoting junk environmentalism:
...if kids need guidance on anything it is about the bizarre notion that they should be saving the earth before they've come to terms with feeding the hamster.
I pride myself that I have done a reasonable amount of environmental childproofing of my daughter. When she came home from kindergarten telling me about the wisdom of Chief Seattle, I was able to explain that those fine words about looking after the earth had in fact been penned by a television scriptwriter. When her school concert featured a little boy pontificating as David Suzuki, and an evil entity named "Exxon," I explained carefully to her why I was writing a nasty letter to the school authorities.
Tony Blair's government is sending a copy [of Al Gore’s movie] to every secondary school in the country. According to a report on the CBC Web site, the film "illustrates the dramatic change to the environment caused by burning fossil fuels." No other factors apparently need apply.
Whatever Mr. Gore's future political aspirations, one can't help thinking of H.L. Mencken's insight that: "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule it."
Shades of Orwell's young "Spies" in Nineteen Eighty-Four. The environmental movement has long had a clear role for children in its campaign to end industrial civilization. Children are to be indoctrinated, and in turn badger their parents.
It is disgraceful to use children for environmental agitprop, but it starts by filling their heads with stories they are ill-equipped to evaluate...
In the current ‘climate’ of environmental hysteria together with a heavily biased media and education system, opposing scientific and economic views seem hopelessly disadvantaged. In fact anyone expressing views counter to the prevailing politically correct world-view set themselves up for insult, abuse and shunning. This is hardly a healthy ‘climate’. So what possibility is there that this situation can be turned around? Is there any hope at all?
One of a very few sources of ‘alternative’ thinking (the best in Canada) on this subject can be found in the Financial Post ‘Comments’ section, featuring the writing of Peter Foster, Terence Corcoran, William Watson and Lawrence Solomon. The web obviously also has many sites. But I suspect that these are mostly received by the converted and it’s just a small trickle against a deluge of alarmist propaganda to the contrary.
Perhaps the best and only real hope is ‘reality’. Flawed climate science and associated socialist ‘solutions’ will be overcome when reality catches up with them. Flawed science is invariably remedied by new discoveries and new data. And socialism is inherently at odds with most economic reality - hence its track record of failure. Unfortunately, the remedies served up by reality may begin only after great damage has been done. And even then corrective action may be a long and uncertain process.