Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Never Mind the Real Threats

In the past few weeks, Earth had a close encounter with an asteroid--which was not detected by scientists until a few days before it passed closer to the planet than the Moon--we've had major vocanic eruptions in Iceland and in Japan, and we've had our first "domestic" case of the Ebola virus.  And yet, what was deemed the "greatest threat to humanity" at the United Nations General Assembly last week?  Of course, Global Climate Change.

Now I can understand dismissing the threat to humanity from volcanic activity.  I don't think man will ever be able to develop technology to prevent magma from coming to the surface through the Earth's crust--or to even control its release so as not to threaten human population centers.  But having serious conversations about vulcanology and plate tectonics would kind of ruin the narrative of climate change alarmists by pointing out that Mother Nature is actually the biggest producer of greenhouse gases on the planet.  Unfortunately, you can't tax a volcano or make it buy carbon credits--and you can't just ban the super-volcano that sits below Yellowstone National Park--whose eventual eruption will pretty much spell the end of life on North America for a few thousand years.

But there are things we can do to address the other two clear and present dangers that were made evident recently.  Asteroid detection and avoidance is a woefully underfunded effort.  We can only scan small sections of the sky for potential threats--and even if we did detect a rock big enough to cause serious damage--we don't have a plan nor the technology to mitigate the threat.  We'd probably be more committed to that effort if it didn't require the so-called "Military-Industrial Complex" to solve it.  Many of the weapons production companies would be the ones to develop the technology and build the equipment that would be needed to first detect an incoming asteroid or comet and then go into space to deflect it onto a new course.  Unless someone can come up with a giant "Space Windmill" to "blow" the asteroid off course.

And then there is the viral threat.  We humans have managed to ward off nature's attempt to exterminate us a few times before. The plague, polio, smallpox, and AIDS have either been wiped out or greatly curtailed by continued advances in medical treatment and global immunization efforts.  So Ebola really shouldn't scare us that much.  But to continue to stay one step ahead of fast-mutating viruses we need big bio-medical corporations, genetic modification research programs and pharmaceutical companies with the capacity to mass produce vaccines and antibiotics.  Unfortunately, those are all the businesses that are endlessly targeted by the left for their own form of "extermination".

So I guess we can either put all of our time and money into fighting a "problem" that for some reason can only be solved by limiting the growth of the American economy and reducing our standards of living--or we can get to work on addressing the real threats to our species.  You know, it was almost like the planet was trying to send us a message.........

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