GEORGE Orwell argued that ‘some ideas are so stupid that only intellectuals believe them’. The floods and overflowing dams around Sydney prove the Australian climate activist Tim Flannery must have been in la-la land when arguing that global warming would inevitably lead to droughts and empty dams.
Ever-increasing energy prices and the danger of blackouts caused by closing power stations sourced by coal and gas and relying on unreliable and intermittent wind and solar power is another example of alarmist academics getting it wrong.
Based on the scientific advice given by supposed experts such as Flannery, the Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews (aka Dictator Dan) justifies banning searching for on-shore gas at the same time as making more efficient and reliable coal-powered stations uneconomical.
A podcast released by Sydney’s Festival of Dangerous Ideas featuring a professor from New York University, Dr Matthew Liao, and his solution to global warming proves, yet again, how many academics must be living in an alternate universe.
Dr Liao’s presentation argues that urgent and immediate action must be taken as ‘it is too late to prevent human-induced climate change’ and too risky to employ ‘mitigation through techniques of geo-engineering like giant space mirrors or seeding the oceans with iron to prompt carbon-absorbing algal blooms’.
Dr Liao suggests a ground-breaking solution guaranteed to solve the problem of humans infecting the Gaia and causing such wanton destruction.
Dr Liao suggests: ‘Why not address the source of the problem and engineer humans to reduce our environmental impact and adapt? Genetic engineering could make us smaller or reduce our appetite for meat. Doses of oxytocin [a hormone which facilitates childbirth] could make us more sympathetic and co-operative. Such possibilities are criticised as extreme but are they more so than re-engineering the planet?’
Much like Jonathan Swift’s fictional Academy of Lagado, where scientists work to extract sunlight from cucumbers and turn human excrement back into food, Dr Liao’s idea to reduce everyone’s carbon footprint by employing genetic engineering and drugs to make people smaller and easy to control appears laughable and beyond reason.
At the same time, given the strategies addressing climate change and the global Covid-19 pandemic recommended by bodies such as the World Economic Forum and the World Health Organisation, it’s wrong to dismiss Dr Liao’s idea as unrealistic and implausible.
Across the globe there are ever more examples of governments embarking on crazy ideas to reduce carbon emissions, improve the environment and save citizens from Covid-19 and its variants, all based on so-called reputable and rational scientific advice.
The New Zealand government, even though the country’s contribution to global emissions is only 0.17 per cent compared with China’s 30 per cent and America’s 14 per cent, plans to tax burping cows and sheep and thus penalise one of New Zealand’s most important agricultural industries.
One of the reasons Sri Lanka is an economic basket case and suffering food riots is because the government, on the advice of scientific experts, banned synthetic fertilisers and pesticides and made farmers go organic, as TCW reported here. Domestic rice production fell 20 per cent in months and now rice has to be imported at great cost.
Farmers in the Netherlands, who recently blockaded roads with hundreds of tractors, reported by TCW here, are facing similar pressures by government to reduce fertilisers and cut back on livestock based on dodgy scientific advice.
Ignored is the world’s capacity to grow more food and feed billions more people, especially in underdeveloped countries, because of scientific advances using man-made fertilisers and pesticides which are more efficient and productive than organic farming.
Similar to the issue of how best to respond to global warming, the emergence of the Covid-19 virus also illustrates the dangers of governments overreacting and adopting dangerous and irrational policies based on hasty and unproven scientific advice.
As a result of draconian lockdowns and border closures across Australia, millions have suffered mental illness, ill health and financial ruin, while the promise that experimental vaccines would provide immunity has proved illusory.
Worst still, the World Health Organisation is campaigning to mandate a global pandemic treaty giving it the power to enforce lockdowns, mandatory jobs and digital health IDs designed to monitor citizens’ movements. So much for national sovereignty and the right to liberty and freedom.