Tuesday, March 17, 2009

My environmental pet peeves

I wasn't going to post so soon, as I'm busy hammering out the details of a series of posts that I'll be making shortly, but this article on Crazy Sexy Life basically contains every last pet peeve I have against the Green movement.

I'm not anti-green. We recycle. We conserve (saves on our utilities bills). We bike everywhere, use public transit, make homemade cleaners, and I'm working on getting a bunch of newspaper to try for a batch of homemade kitty litter. I believe in doing what we can, but I also believe in common sense and science--not in any religious way, but as a guide to point us towards what is possible and why.

Alas, science and common sense are lost amidst the moralizing grandstanding of the morons who write articles like the one at Crazy Sexy Life. Even if the guy is absolutely correct on all of his scientific points--that genes bleeding into the environment could be catastrophic (something I've not seen reported anywhere)--there is still one major reason why research on GMOs and using them can NOT be allowed to stop: 6.1 billion people, and the shrinking acreage of arable land. If you forbid the usage of GMOs (assuming, of course, that you can even define them), you essentially condemn farmers to pre-Industrial Age technology and breeding methods--and the poorer parts of the world to death by starvation. And that is a true moral travesty.

I also abhor the shoddy reasoning concerning his ideas on evolution: on the one hand, he suggests that old-fashioned selective breeding is best, since it allows life to exist along it's "evolutionary reality" (I shit you not, this is a phrase he uses). On the other, he bemoans the mutations that are arising in heirloom crops, which he blames on GMOs (even though he doesn't give a source for it). Surely, he didn't think that evolution could occur without mutation?

Science is not a system of morals, and I understand that. Common sense is not a system of morals, either. Science builds us a gun, but it can't tell us not to bust a cap in our neighbor's ass, that sort of thing. But "bad" and "good" are not reasons to be against GMOs. The reason why the Green movement against GMOs will lose (and it will) has nothing to do with money, power, or politics. The reason why the Green movement will lose this fight is because they insist that GMOs are bad, rather than giving reasons for why they are so bad.

Y'know, just for fun, one of these days I'll come up with an post or two with real reasons to be against GMOs. Ones that are actually backed up with evidence (and not wishful thinking).


Studd Beefpile said...

It makes a lot more sense when you realize that modern progressivism (of which environmentalism is a major part) is a direct philosophical descendant of Puritanism.

Anonymous said...

Fantastic! I wish I can figure out how I can follow your blog, but I'm an idiot.