Friday, December 11, 2009

The Greening of Socialism

Where did socialism go?

When the Berlin Wall fell twenty years ago so too did the visions of revolutionary socialist utopias. The great socialist dreams suffered an ignominious defeat at the hands of reality. Apparently, human freedom is more powerful than the ideologues had imagined.

Socialism had had its greatest successes in persuading the cognoscenti to join its cause. Great thinkers are always happiest when they are ruminating about a dream. They are much less comfortable when reality judges their dreams.

If reality is right, then the dreamers are simply deluded fools. And we can't have that, can we?

While socialist reality had never been much to write home about, the dream was a wonder to behold. But once the dream died, the dreamers did not just fold their tents. According to Charles Krauthammer, they simply rebranded socialism and turned it into environmentalism. Link here.

If Krauthammer is right, then environmentalism has very little to do with the environment; it is a Trojan horse, socialism in disguise. All the better to indoctrinate and acculturate you, my dear.

The key was turning a reasonable demand that industry clean up the toxic substances it was spewing into the air and water into a mass hysteria about how carbon dioxide-- which we normally exhale and which plants normally use in photosynthesis-- is really the ultimate poison driving us toward an apocalyptic catastrophe.

Thus did reasonable environmentalism become global warmism.

Given that it is more about vision than science, global warmism is not going to be derailed by a scientific scandal, even one as massive as the one recently discovered at the Climate Research Unit of the U. of East Anglia.

Krauthammer implies that environmentalism is more about cultural indoctrination than scientific rigor. It is working day and night, not to save the planet, but to feed you a steady diet of anti-capitalist ideology.

For those who did not accept the party line, namely, that capitalism had succeeded on the backs of the proletariat, environmentalism provides all of us with a new way to feel guilty... for destroying Mother Earth.

People should have been suspicious of the mythos surrounding environmentalism. Intellectuals, in particular, should have thrown doubt and skepticism on its claims. They did not.

Thus, no small part of the population has become convinced that global warming is a dogmatic truth, to the point where they accept that research is shut down and that speech is restricted.

For some this will be good news: socialism lives, albeit in somewhat altered form. If you cannot destroy capitalism by violent revolution, why not try to turn the capitalists into environmental activists.

Even if capitalists would never allow you to take away their wealth and freedom, many of them are more than happy to give it away to the latest feel-good cause.

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