October 31, 2019
Earlier this week, we published the essay “Stop Scaring the Children” by American economist Stephen Moore.
We got some great responses… Like this note from reader T.A.
When I was 8 years old, they showed us pictures of a nuclear blast blowing away buildings – we’ve all seen the sequence. Then they told us we would hide under our desks. All of this is nothing new, same concept; different bugbear. And they wondered why we boomers became a generation of hedonists.
And Rob M., who wrote us…
How come none of these fear mongers have ever considered what our planet would be like if the ice-age had not ended???
Of course, we can’t please everyone… nor do we try. Pamela M. wrote in to tell us Moore has it all wrong…
I’m about to turn 60 and I think we have been totally irresponsible in our handling of so many issues and to expect our children to fix it determines what history will say is that we are a me me me generation of narcissists and self-serving people… I’m proud of Greta and all teachers who are speaking up. How about blaming yourself for the situation and they have to speak upon the first place…
Pamela, we wouldn’t think of arguing that the government hasn’t been irresponsible. That’s what the government does. But claims that politicians have “stolen my dreams and my childhood,” as Greta Thunberg put it, are a tantrum thrown by a teenager.
The world isn’t going to end in 8.5 years… 10 years… or 12 years. And no politician is ever going to fix the climate.
But the good news is that – just as the world has improved in the past 100 years… with less pollution, less poverty, and less disease – the world will continue to improve in the next 100.
Thank each new generation of inventors, entrepreneurs, and investors for that… not backward-looking governments or activists.
What do you think? Will we face an apocalypse in the next decade? Let us know by clicking here.
In the meantime, our Editor in Chief P.J. O’Rourke’s does have some tips for saving energy…
- Unplug all your “smart” appliances. They may be smart enough to turn themselves back on when you’re not there… The clothes washer giving itself a relaxing soak in the tub, the dryer going for a spin-cycle joyride, the stove deciding it wants to look “hot,” and the refrigerator trying to be “cool.” This can add hundreds of dollars a year to your utility bills.
- Replace standard light bulbs with LED bulbs. Or just go without light bulbs and stick your fingers directly into the light bulb socket, which will light up your whole head.
- Sushi preparation is very energy efficient, but don’t limit yourself to just raw fish. Try it with chicken and pork, too.
- Cut your driving mileage with badly behaved kids. When you drop them off at school in the morning, just wait in the parking lot until they’re expelled. Saves one round-trip each school day.
- Most gasoline is now at least 10% ethanol. (This is mandated by the government, so it must be good for the environment.) Keep and save leftover alcohol at your house – from beer cans, wine bottle dregs, and what’s left in the cocktail glasses after you’ve made a pitcher of martinis… Then pour it in your gas tank. If this makes your car stop running, that’s even more energy efficient.
- Adopt 40 large dogs to cut down on winter heating bills.
- Stop watering your lawn. Lawns consume 15% of the water used in the United States. Lots of things will grow without watering. Weeds, for instance. Buy a sheep to eat them.
- If the 40 large dogs you adopted are all German Shepherds, and they start fighting over which one of them gets to herd your only sheep, congratulations! You’ve just conserved the Earth’s resources by not needing to build a fence.
- Eat the sheep. (See Tip No. 3.) Let the weeds grow. They’ll conceal the house, and it will never need painting again. This saves a lot of energy. (Yours and the house painter’s.)
- Board up the house windows in the spring to preserve winter’s cool temperatures indoors all summer. Then board up the windows in the fall to keep summer warmth inside all winter.
- Air-condition your home without using any energy at all. Husbands, tell your wives, “I’m buying a Harley.” Daughters, tell your parents, “I’m dating a pot grower. He says legalization is coming soon.” The frost in the air will chill the whole house.
- Hear that squeak from the exercise wheel in the gerbil cage? Why let this energy go to waste? Build a bigger exercise wheel, equip it with fan blades, and install it in your bedroom window.
- Speaking of rodents, let mice insulate your home. I have examined fiberglass insulation and I have examined mouse nests, and the two are highly similar – except that one is pink and itchy and the other is fluffy and smelly – but they probably both have the same resistance to conductive heat flow, or “R-value.”
- Attract mice by leaving the door of your unplugged refrigerator open.
- Wear all your clothes at once. The extra layers will allow you to turn your thermostat down in the winter, while the evaporation of heavy perspiration will have a cooling effect in the summer.
***Above cartoon masterfully inked by cartoonist Kevin “Kal” Kallaugher.
Now here are some of the stories we’re reading…
If Valentine’s Day is a Hallmark holiday, Halloween was made for Instagram… Nearly half of millennials admitted making Halloween purchases strictly for the social media posts.
On Halloween, the media scare people with stories about dangerous costumes and poison candy. Most of the stories are not even true… American Consequences contributor John Stossel goes to Times Square to ask people what scares them.
An artist’s obsession with listings for the cursed, doomed, and otherwise unexplained…
Halloween spending in the U.S. is projected to reach $8.8 billion in 2019. While it’s always had a morbid, spooky vibe, the festivities have changed quite a lot over the centuries.
Watch our own P.J. O’Rourke in this quick video from 2010 where he explains how similar politics are with today’s trick-or-treating holiday… Hint: not much has changed.
And let us know what you’re reading at [email protected].
Publisher, American Consequences
With P.J. O’Rourke and the Editorial Staff
October 31, 2019