I interviewed Elizabeth May yesterday on my “Climate Change Reality Radio Show,” Breakin’ Ice, and she’s certainly a smart cookie. By far the most knowledgeable of the federal leaders on global warming, greening the economy, and so on, she’s also the only one who ‘gets’ the danger of climate change. I’ll post back when the podcast is available.
But there is one critical thing she doesn’t get, and neither do most well-meaning people: Those she is up against have a different morality. I have called it the Predator Morality, as it accurately describes the behaviour of the deniers and free market fundamentalists. Think about the Canadian Harper government; these are people who wrote a secret manual on subverting our democratic system. Do you really think they are going to negotiate in good faith or that their word can be trusted?These are people who put ideology before their own children. Calling them predators is not name-calling; it is an accurate description of their observed behaviour.
To a predator, all truth is relative because Might Makes Right. Predators believe that he with the power makes the rules, and therefore the only thing that matters or is true is the truth as he sees it. To a predator, it is not wrong to lie to achieve power or other goals. It is perfectly acceptable to sacrifice others for your good; they were obviously weaker. If inconvenient scientific ‘facts’ arise, then they should be suppressed and the blasphemous scientists discredited or fired.
This is not new; religious predators did this for centuries and now the torch has been passed to corporate and political leaders. Until those who seek to save the world get this, the predators will continue to win.
This is also a lesson the developing countries are learning the hard way, with the leaking of the “Danish text,” a document by Denmark, the U.K, and the U.S. that contains a double-standard in favour of the rich countries. Essentially, it allows the rich countries to emit more than the poor countries until 2050, turns control over to the World Bank, and so on. The poor countries are considering walking out of the Copenhagen climate talks.
A walkout would be viewed as a victory by deniers. They got what they wanted, which was…nothing. No action on climate and a divided world which will be unable to agree on hard targets. A walkout is counter-productive, but hard action is needed. The developing countries should band together and should charge Rex Tillerson with crimes against humanity. The only way the rich countries are going to respect the poor countries is if the latter flex moral and actual muscle.
Do you really think the Canadian Prime Minister or the U.S. President care what happens to the people of Maldives, or Bangladesh, or any other sinking country? Do you hear them offering land for a new country? Do you hear them suggesting Canada or the U.S. open their doors to take in millions of climate refugees? Hardly. They won’t even commit to doing anything to prevent making the problem worse, never mind taking responsibility for causing it. The Maldivians and Bangladeshis and everyone else will drown or find some other sucker country to take them, but no predator is going to offer to help unless there’s something in it for him.
Until the do-gooders and sinking countries realise who they are dealing with, they will continue to lose.