Global Climate Change, Economy, and Politics

It’s Sunday at about 11:22 am, and already the temperature has reached 90 degrees. Thank goodness for my electric air conditioner at home and the one in my carbon gas emitting car. Otherwise, I’d be sweating and that’s uncomfortable. The problem is, global climate change is happening. Furthermore, scientists almost unanimously agree that it’s a result of the gigatonage of greenhouse gas we emit due to fossil fuel consumption. Unwilling to acknowledge that this danger is a result of natural resource consumption however, corporations (and thus politicians) continue to maneuver around the issue, never addressing it with any real intention of correcting, or adjusting to, the crisis of global warming. Instead, Congress and the social elite submit petty versions of Europe’s cap-and-trade system to stem the rising demand for energy policy reform. So my question is: What is it going to take for U.S. leaders and lawmakers to initiate a major change in energy usage and production? Another Catastrophe perhaps?

It makes me sick to think of how the Corporate-controlled media convinced America into believing that Bush won the election before it was even over and assured us that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction without producing any evidence to anyone. Yet, global climate change is so apparent that you can see it with your own eyes but still our government and the media continue to downplay the issue. It seems that government leaders are more concerned about  producing cheap products than they are about the source of all life as we know it. How fucked is that reasoning? Not to mention selfish. But, when it comes to the environment, most Americans are not adverse to paying more for renewable energy in an effort to reduce carbon emissions. So why aren’t we moving more rapidly toward greenhouse gas reduction? The answer, as usual, is profit.

Corporate America makes a killing on finite resource consumption, especially given our dependence fossil fuel energy. As any econ. 101 class will teach you, the key to capitalist profit making is scarcity. Therefore, renewable energy is not in the best interest of the richest and most influential corporations. These corporations also control the private, advertising-based media that now dominates American journalism. They filter out what they consider to be damaging to their advertisers and corporate sponsors, effectively dictating what is “newsworthy”. Additionally, these corporations are the primary funding agencies for major political party campaigns. Their reach is so extensive and integrated into our society, that I fear only a cataclysm could produce enough support to produce any major reform. Even Hurricane Katrina’s destruction of the Gulf, increased temperatures in arctic regions and erratic weather conditions have been marginalized as “typical weather events” despite what scientists say about their increased frequency.

So here I am sitting at my computer trying to think up ways to deal with this problem and I must admit, my mind wants to abate toward a more pleasant subject. Growing up around the Florida Everglades, I have always admired the power of environmental advocates like Marjory Stoneman Douglas and their ability to curb development in the name of ecological preservation. However, given America’s dependence on fossil fuel, I don’t see the environment as a contending factor in the face of famine and energy shortages as we continue to deplete natural resources. As always, I urge anyone reading this to post a comment about what they think needs to transpire in order to avoid the bleak future that seems to be presenting itself. One thing is for certain though, it will take a global effort and global contiousness to change this course of events 50 years in the making. - knockemdown

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