Abolish Earth Day

In: Uncategorized

21 Apr 2010

It should come as no surprise to readers that I think Earth Day should be abolished. To me it is a celebration of backward and misanthropic ideas.

Environmentalism essentially holds that humanity should agree to be bound by nature. It seems humans as simply another part of the natural world – on a moral par with all other animals.

Green ideas are set directly against those of the Enlightenment and even the Renaissance. The goal of humanity attempting to take control over nature first articulated by Francis Bacon (1561-1626), a key figure in the development of the scientific method.

Nevertheless the an examination of the celebration helps reveal several characteristics of environmentalism:

* During the 40th annual Earth Day tomorrow it is worth remembering that green ideas have been mainstream for a long time. The 1970s was the key decade with the outlook going from a minority to a majority one. Since then it has become more dominant still but it is not a new set of ideas.

* Green ideas are influential in America too.  Many of the European chattering classes still seem to assume that environmentalism is a small minority trend in America. In reality the US, like Britain and Germany, is a bastion of green ideas.

* Environmentalism is a conservative outlook. The new year’s message at the start of 1970 from Richard Nixon, the Republican president, emphasised environmental themes. (Although a least one conservative commentator has tried to draw conclusions from the fact that 22 April was also Lenin’s birthday).

Earth Day should be replaced with a Human Achievement day which could look at human advance in many areas including art, engineering, medicine, science and economics. I will say more on this theme tomorrow.