March 10, 2009

Thank You, Greatest Generation!


I don't read Thomas Friedman's column regularly, but if he promises to quote The Onion and make me think of Wonder Showzen from now on, I'll give him a chance. The Onion quote you can read for yourself. But these paragraphs could come straight from one of Showzen's most unspeakably brilliant segments, "Thank You, Greatest Generation!" A kid in a Little Lord Fauntleroy costume stops 60+ year-olds on the street and says, "Thanks for nuclear proliferation!" "Thanks for acid rain!" "Thanks for sewing the seeds of the Apocalypse!" and "Thanks for inventing the TV which rots my brain!"

"We created a way of raising standards of living that we can't possibly pass on to our children," said Joe Romm, a physicist and climate expert who writes the indispensable blog We have been getting rich by depleting all our natural stocks -- water, hydrocarbons, forests, rivers, fish and arable land -- and not by generating renewable flows.

"You can get this burst of wealth that we have created from this rapacious behavior," added Romm. "But it has to collapse, unless adults stand up and say, 'This is a Ponzi scheme. We have not generated real wealth, and we are destroying a livable climate ...' Real wealth is something you can pass on in a way that others can enjoy."

The Inflection Is Near? [nyt via south willard]

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