In Two Visions of a Sustainable Future the image of the Golden Gate Bridge and an image of a "specially designed composting pail" provide an opportunity to analyze the concept of "sustainability" and:
dramatize...two warring visions. One picture represents retrogression back to the life of an ignorant peasant sorting through trash and hiding seeds in bunkers passively awaiting a prophesied global apocalypse. The other is a picture from another part of San Francisco. The Golden Gate bridge represents reason, production, progress, and human happiness. It represents true creativity and more importantly, true sustainability - the kind that follows from a moral philosophy which holds man’s life as the standard of value.
In The Story of Stuff is The Stuff of Evil, I analyze an environmentalist propaganda film in detail, making the case that it should be banned from public schools on the grounds that its unscientific content violates the separation of church and state:
The fact that the film is factually inaccurate, philosophically false, and contains ideas beyond the conceptual level of children are grounds enough to prohibit this film in public schools. But, there is an even deeper reason why it should be prohibited. This film should be banned from public schools on the same grounds that any religious material is prohibited in government run schools. Just as intelligent design and creationism have properly been prohibited in schools on the grounds that teaching unscientific ideas would constitute a state sanctioned promotion of religion in violation of the First Amendment, this film and all environmentalist propaganda should also be prohibited.
In Written in Disgust of Vulgar Superstition, the Keats poem of the same title provides inspiration to answer why "the hysterical doomsday predictions of the modern environmental movement increasingly resemble the apocalyptic rantings of ancient mystics" and to answer the following:
What is the connection between biblical prophecy and modern scientific warnings about the end of civilization due to "global cooling", "global warming", or "climate change"? When observing the spectacularly absurd predictions of Malthus in 1798, lamentations about the end of discovery in the 1800's, or Newsweek's dire warnings of global cooling in the 1970's, and in light of overwhelming evidence that modern climate scientists do not fully grasp, uh, well, climate - how can someone like Peter Cosier claim that the "science is over" and that "urgent action" is required?
I will end this post the same way I did the above:
Modern civilization is founded upon the recognition and celebration of the power of the free and independent human mind to discover, create, and build. The Dark Ages and any dictatorship is a consequence of the rejection of the efficacy of the individual mind in favor of revelation and faith in mystic, supernatural forces conveyed to the ragged masses by self-anointed "experts" able to divine real Truth or the will of God. You choose which world you wish to live in.
I came across this poem which inspired this post and I think it eloquently captures the essence and suffocating sense of life of the mystic or in modern times - the crusading
Written in Disgust of Vulgar Superstition
The church bells toll a melancholy round,
Calling the people to some other prayers,
Some other gloominess, more dreadful cares,
More harkening to the sermon's horrid sound.
Surely the mind of man is closely bound
In some black spell; seeing that each one tears
Himself from fireside joys, and Lydian airs,
And converse high of those with glory crown'd
Still, still they too, and I should feel a damp,
-A chill as from a tomb, did I not know
That they are dying like an outburnt lamp;
That 'tis their sighing, wailing ere they go
Into oblivion; - that fresh flowers will grow,
And many glories of immortal stamp.
John Keats, posthumous