Save the planet, bah! It’s us that need saving
This is my tribute to the late great George Carlin. A smart man, we agree on most everything. That doesn’t make me smart, just agreeable.
Save the What? Save the Planet? (insert the same laugh track but run it twice as long). There has never been more of a ridiculous example of collective human conceit than this. It’s beyond silly. I’m sure those people a couple of weeks back who gathered together to “Save the Planet” with their protest had good intentions but they would have served more value to “us” by acting as human UV shields right at the heart of the “global warming” hole in the ozone layer.
We could have taken them up in Richard Branson’s cool new space jet, push them out at just the right altitude and for that six or seven seconds before they lost consciousness and burnt to a cinder, we might have gotten just 0.0001 seconds of UV relief. Short of that, they were wasting their time because here’s the thing — the planet doesn’t need saving, WE DO!
It’s fair to say I didn’t pay a lot of attention in geography at school but I listened long enough to know the planet has been here for a bit. It’s survived an ice age, volcanos, meteors, floods, earth-quakes, tectonic separations, droughts, fires and in all this time, its managed to rotate around the sun at the same speed. It’s pretty obvious the planet is reasonably self-correcting. If we wipe ourselves out with a nuclear holocaust, it might take a few million years but I’d take the punt things would get back to normal. Save the Planet? We’d have more success drilling a hole in a concrete block with our index fingers. The planet has just has one worry — and one alone. It’s called the sun.
See, when the sun goes super nova in a few billion years or so, the planet will need a big hand. Then we can whack up a huge inter-stellar neon sign, with the flashing message: “Save the Planet”.
Until then, our little and exceptionally futile battle to Save the Planet is over because we can’t.. It’s super-trendy to go to war on things. War on Drugs, War on Terror, War on Fat, today there’s a new war: War on Us or W.O.U. (pronounced Whoa!). W.O.U. ground troops will carry hefty black puddings and wander the Earth, like Kane out of Kung Fu, belting Save the Planeteers — especially those annoying celebrities — until they realise their cause is silly, conceited and they should just stick to acting — most of them badly.
The planet doesn’t need saving. It doesn’t care if we are here or not. Only we care. The planet will continue to spin on its axis, all the while circling the sun — we don’t help it do that. I don’t see 100 million of us riding bike-powered “Earth-rotator rubberbands” like good little hamsters in a wheel.
And what about the animals? Hundreds of animals are on the brink of extinction. Save the panda, save the seals, soon we’ll have no fish? So? Whose fault is that? Ours? As social satirist George Carlin (aka Rufus) says: “We didn’t kill them all”. Have the STPs ever considered the possibility more species died — probably thousands — before we even arrived. Save the Planet? Then there’s this little gem along the same lines as this age-old riddle: Q. How do you confuse a tree hugging greenie. A. Give him two shovels and tell him to take his pick.
Has it even been considered the melting of the arctic regions of our planet is actually CREATING life? D’oh! What do we do now? Perhaps the melting ice is releasing many thousands of dormant single-cell creatures that have been waiting in their frozen tombs since the first ice age — ready for a crack at the new world. Stop the melting and in the process kill new life? Isn’t that completely against the fundamental beliefs of the Save the Planeteers? Ouch! Didn’t plan on that one, did we.
Have we considered those single cells are destined to become us. They’ll crawl out of the water, learn how to make a roly-poly round object that makes moving things easier and something that gets hot you can cook food on. Then they’ll try to work out what the heck created all these tall glass thingies — and where did they go? They will even ponder the question: Why are we here? Ever considered, we might be answering it right now.
*This was first published in The Northern Territory News last decade. It still seems relevant today.