POLLUTER BORN EVERY MINUTE
WAYS TO REDUCE CARBON FOOTPRINTS:ACTION: (Measure: Lifetime carbon dioxide saved in Metric Tons)
Recycle newspaper, magazines, glass, plastic, and aluminum cans – 17
Replace old refrigerator with energy-efficient model – 19
Replace 10 incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient ones – 36
Replace single-glazed windows with energy-efficient windows – 21
Reduce miles driven from 231 to 155 per week – 147
Increase car’s fuel economy from 20 miles per gallon to 30 – 148
REDUCE NUMBER OF CHILDREN BY ONE – 9,441 tons (The only way to logically and democratically achieve this would be through a process of sex education and health care, with emphasis upon the consequences of human overpopulation. Of course right wing churches would go nuts).
Data from U. S. Environmental Protection Agency’s personal emissions calculator and calculations by OSU statistics professor Paul Murtaugh. Annual totals based on lifespan of 80 (female expectancy U.S.) Source: Paul Murtaugh.
Under current conditions, each child in the U.S. adds about 9,441 metric tons of carbon dioxide to the parents’ carbon legacy during his lifetime. That’s 5.7 times more than the average childless person.
A child born in China has a fifth of the impact of a child born in the U.S.
The carbon legacy and greenhouse gas impact of having a child is almost 20 times more important than other ecologically minded lifestyle choices like driving a fuel-efficient car, recycling or being energy-efficient.
The same conclusions roughly apply to fresh water consumption.
Many children are born to people who are not ready or willing to raise them.
Many parents are less ecologically responsible out of convenience, e.g. using disposable instead of cloth diapers; buying an SUV instead of a compact (“The family is so much safer.” Not in the long run, Mom, bad choice).
Abstracted: “Not So Carbon Friendly” Jennifer Anderson, Portland Tribune. Sound Off – Comment: www.portlandtribune.com
Hysterical right-wingers and Christian fundamentalist whack jobs already label the above findings as a call for euthanasia.
“See, I told you so! Obama wants to kill your previously brainwashed children!”
We might consider a tax penalty (disincentive) for having more than two children – no exemption for more. However, we want to take care of the children; they are in extremis through no fault or will of their own. Maybe the parents should go to jail for child abuse, if they can’t responsibly control themselves or use protection. They create a child victim if they cannot take care of it, and that seems like a criminal act to me. The fact that they are the parents and it was just an “oopsy, we were so in love,” doesn’t cut it. No more obscene Octi-Mom Baby Bank careerists. We really must resolve this issue to the best of all concerned.
Right wing nuts pressure congress to exclude reproductive health care, including abortion, and want to limit a woman’s ability to choose a health care provider. Women deserve full access to health care without outrageous ignorant moralistic religious impositions on the national law and health of American citizens. Make these superstitious fanatics take their filthy claws off American women. Separate church and state. Millions of women rely on community health care to provide the full range of services to those who desperately need it.
Women’s basic health care is a priority; women must not be worse off under health care reform. Health care reform should INCREASE access, not DECREASE it. Health care should include reliable practical information on birth control, and explain the real consequences of human overpopulation. We must resist the control freak loonies who distort our national dialog and cause countless deaths and untold misery to serve an archaic, nihilistic and arguably suicidal ideological madness.
I first became a genuine environmentalist while in the Navy. I did some South Seas reef diving and became a bogus shell collector, proud to take only “live” shells, boiling them clean when I got home, thinking that the conchs smelled like particularly good seafood. The conchs taught me what I needed to know. I found one lying on the sandy bottom, spotted more, and soon harvested five. Score! I took them home, and while they were boiling, did the research – which strikes me as humanity’s general approach to nature, learning about it after we’ve shot, stabbed, strangled and/or overbuilt it. On this occasion I learned that conchs eat the brittle star, which eats live coral, exposing the reef to erosion, which exposes the island to the waves. I had helped to destroy the balance, enabling one species to overwhelm another, breaking the co-dependent chain that sustains all. My ignorance gave the planet deeper grief than could be guessed. Multiplied by a legion of ignorantly indifferent shell collectors, the islands were doomed. Adding greed and superstition to the equation, which institutionalizes and exalts ignorance, we have the entire human race’s approach to the planet today.
Global warming, global dimming, and overpopulation beset us. We are overheating the planet, interfering with its rainfall, changing the ocean currents, destroying the bottom of the food chain, and breeding like rabbits. But, not to worry, it’s all in some cockamamie book or other; written by ancient nomadic desert dwellers that knew nothing about science, who maintained – unreasonably – that’s it’s all out of our control. Some supreme invisible sky being is “planning” everything for us and in the end, if you believe this drivel, all will come out just hunky-dory. It’s all for the best, just ask Pat Robertson, or any other cockamamie right wing true believer.
The rich who benefit most from natural destruction, and all who help them, are intentionally committing high crimes and misdemeanors against life on this planet; they would be felonies if committed against human beings – “but we gotta kill those forests to feed all those babies” (lining fat pockets). Until it ends. The numbskulls are corrupting our laws and tossing aside every value other than material profit and individual power, still subdividing farmland, planting high-rise condos on our waterfronts, eating the spoils of the global holocaust, and taking immense pride in their ability to waste gas and ruin the air in a Hummer.
Many people care more about some bastard’s paternity on the Maury Show, than the planet’s survival. Money, sex, drugs, and cheap thrills prevail – as commodity, as constant pastime, as life pursuit. It’s obvious that we’re much too stupid as a species to prevent our own extinction; it’s just too bad we have to take most other species with us when we go – bad sports us.
Alas, it was such a beautiful planet. Now, it’s on its way to becoming a lifeless and barren husk. Don’t think of it as desert, think of it as Palm Springs after all the water runs out. Mars is us.
According to the best science, we’ve got ten years left to take this issue on seriously and save our butts. It may well be less, no one can accurately predict the rate of decay. It will take most of us to accomplish any earthly salvation – a genuine World War II worldwide effort – but if we don’t confront and dispose of our garbage: including religion; overpopulation; short-term economic self-interest; and our ostrich-like tendency to duck and cover in order to avoid seeing our approaching doom, we’re screwed.
We must stop over consumption, kick capitalism into a servant’s status in our democratic life, and curb the excesses of individual and tribal (read also national) self-interest. Impossible, you say? That’s my point: good luck and the spin of prayer is about all we seem willing to invest in our own survival.
Homo sapiens, man the “wise,” we called ourselves; Homo sapiens sapiens, man the “doubly wise” some scientists call us now. Yeah, right. If so, there’s only one way out of this – not some external savior superman, God or alien – it is each one:
“Act. There may be no result in your lifetime, but without action, there will be no result at all.” – Mahatma Gandhi.
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