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Random thought on austerity

It's occurred to me that the 100 (is it?) people who run the world have decided that the Kochs are noisy but crazy and that global warming is terrifyingly real. But they let the Kochs do their thing because tribalism, also too distraction and misdirection, and heck, those crazy brothers are lovable in their own way.

Because think about it:

Since US citizens consume disproportionately in every form of energy and resource, you could view austerity is the very sort of thing that hippies like the Arch Druid support: Simpler life style with a smaller carbon footprint. ON AVERAGE. Because the Gini co-efficient isn't being reduced (as the hippies would do) the austerity are brutal. But that's how you get more carrying capacity on the good ship Planet Sociopath: Heave the passengers over the side, starting with the crowded lower decks. Garçon, more champagne!

Sure, this implies that we know nothing about how the people who run the world make their decisions and that we have no influence on them. But then we knew that.

NOTE * I don't deny that the 0.01% are sociopaths who enjoy inflicting suffering on others. People often have multiple motivations!

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mtngun's picture
Submitted by mtngun on

The elites will not be bothered by climate change.

They own multiple homes. They can just spend more time at their mansion in Aspen, or whatever.

In any event, the climate change issue requires caring for the future and caring about other people and caring about polar bears, etc.. The elites care about numero uno. They know that they will be able to adapt to climate change, perhaps even profit from it.

Food prices will soar ? Then agribusiness will be lucrative.

People will riot in the streets ? The companies that sell riot gear will make a killing.

techno's picture
Submitted by techno on

Jane Hamsher introduced me to the concept of "supermodel stupid." In her telling, the gorgeous women spend much of their formative years surrounded by men who nod and agree with every dumb idea she has because they don't want to screw up the chance to get laid. The result is the there is no idea so preposterous that she hasn't had it confirmed.

I think the same thing happens to rich people. They cannot do anything so stupid that daddy's money and legal team can't get him out of it. They also are surrounded by nodding sycophants who confirm their most preposterous ideas. The goal may be money instead of sex, but the results are quite similar.

It is my guess that even rich fools have to bow to the preponderance of evidence on climate change. The rich don't like change because it means the real possibility that whatever made them rich will change too. But even though climate change is beyond their means to control events, this will not stop them from trying.

wuming's picture
Submitted by wuming on

Because people who are that wealthy and powerful have great lives, and are loathe to do anything that might change that. That an insularity. I like techno's post above, too. Truly wealthy people are very isolated from everyone else, so unless they are going out of their way to see how things actually are for normal people, they're going to have a distorted view of reality. Sociopaths aside, most people want to be nice to their peers as well-- so the nice people don't want to rock the boat and upset those around them.

DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

the only really rich man of my personal acquaintance is not convinced, he has not seen Al Gore's movie. I know many people who are not convinced, none of them have seen An Inconvenient Truth. If you rely of mainstream media, you would not be convinced.

Aeryl's picture
Submitted by Aeryl on

They won't allow their preconceptions be challenged.

High point of my day!(not) My VP decided my dept needed to attend today's monthly sales meeting, where he praised the sales numbers for this month. And warned that things would get worse if Obama is reelected.

Which is true.

But unfortunately he believes Romney will make things better

Submitted by lambert on

Electioneering from the boss. What do they think this is, some kinda company town?

techno's picture
Submitted by techno on

Al Gore turned out to be a profoundly bad spokesman for climate change. It was like he never bothered to watch his own movie. I mean, he makes this movie and THEN proceeds to build this preposterously ugly energy-hog of a house. His solutions like using a clothes-lines again are trivial to the point of irrelevance and his BIG IDEA is carbon trading—an idea modeled on the concept of indulgences that folks found so odious, it sparked the Protestant Reformation.

If you want your friend to understand climate change, have him read James Hansen. Tell him that Hansen was one of only 19 candidates for a Ph.D in astrophysics that was sponsored by the legendary James van Allen (of the Van Allen Belt).

Inconvenient Truth is for kids up to 14. If your friend is an adult, send him to adult section of the literature.