The way China has become the “˜love-bunny’ of the greens is indeed funny, its human rights records is still awful, its building coal fired power station as fast as it can and it’s pollution and environmental problems far surpass anything seen in the west, hardly the hallmarks of eco-hero’s you would have thought.
China is also the “love-bunny” of a certain influential op-ed columnist (which I’ve previously discussed here and here). The weird thing about Hansen’s China-related op-ed and follow-up article (both which you can see here at his site) is that he doesn’t acknowledge the two energy faces of China (I guess he can’t in an op-ed for a Chinese newspaper). I mean, China is in no way banking on renewables to meet it’s voracious energy needs in the decades ahead. Happy talk of green tech aside, China is making deals all over the world to secure unfettered access to fossil fuels, including Canada’s oil sands.
Lastly, I’d be rather sparing in my praise for a country that keeps the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize locked away in jail.
This Guardian piece made me wonder: what if Oprah Winfrey, during her long-running and hugely influential daytime talk show (which is ending this year) had devoted a fraction of air time to sustainability and climate change issues that she spent on promoting dubious, New Age medical cures?
Given that Oprah often vaults books and health products into instant best-sellers, is there any doubt that she could have kept climate change on the front burner if she chose to? I say this not because Oprah is a celebrity in the same way that Leonardo DiCaprio is a celebrity–she’s more than that. She’s a revered, trusted brand, a kind of pop culture Cronkite:
Winfrey’s show has often been that national voice. When she covered the topic of mad cow disease, the nation’s dairy farmers watched sales plummet; when she selected James Frey as an author to watch and later admonished him, the nation went right along with her.
Still, I have to wonder: if Oprah had regularly highlighted on her show the climate change issue as much as she did the latest wrinkle-free cream or faddish diet, could she have kept global warming floating in the public consciousness? Rather, she seems to have treated concern for AGW as a passing fad.
I mean, if this is the story of the century, as so many scientists and climate advocates keep insisting, then why aren’t they hounding the gatekeepers to pop culture, such as Oprah, to do their part? She is one of those rare persons with a huge, devoted following that hang on her every word and follow her guidance. Oprah has the power to influence individual minds and actions in a way that no journalist could.
Last year, I found this commercial hilarious (unlike many greens and climate concerned).
So I find this new British sketch similarly funny (and it appears that the inclusion of the lame laugh track is to make sure we know it’s humor).
I’m sure some of the paranoids in the skeptic wing will view this video as more evidence of a green police state in the making.