Friday, April 23, 2010

Modern primitive.

No, it is not.

This may come as a shock, but the Earth is not actually sentient. It is not Gaia. It is not your mother. It is a great big rock.

Like all other great big rocks observed thus far, it is inanimate and thus incapable of willful action.

The author of this piece, one Mr. Weisman, gets to ponder about this weighty matter because he wrote a book called The World Without Us, which was aimed right to the wheelhouse of liberal guilt: "I feel bad about me because I fail to live up to mom and dad's expectations. I am a human. Ergo, humans are bad and Earth would be better without us. At least, humans like me and mom and dad are. Charmingly ethnic humans might be okay, as long as they are sufficiently exotic."

Where did Weisman get the chops to discuss plate tectonics and vulcanism? Why, picking up his MA in Lit at Northwestern, of course.

Into the Soylent Green vats with you, prof.


rremington said...

If he feels so strongly about it, he could do us all a favor and off himself.

BobG said...

Another Liberal Arts Scientist. Don't those people understand there is a reason why arts and sciences are divided into two different academic degrees?

OA said...

Bit of a coincidence. I just got done wandering around the USGS site. Noticed there were some larger earthquakes that didn't get much press at all (7.8 in Northern Sumatra on April 6, a 6.8 Solomon Islands quake on April 11, 6.3 in Spain also on the 11th) and found myself wondering if the media is actually feeling sufficiently guilty and thoroughly worried enough to be whistling past the graveyard a bit.

I swear we're about three years away from human sacrifice...

"picking up his MA in Lit at Northwestern"

If someone is sufficiently stupid enough to spend that much money on something so utterly useless should anyone listen to them? He could have gotten the same damn education with a library card.

Anonymous said...

Holy crap, that blurb was from his book and he was *serious*?

'Til I noticed the quotation marks I thought that was you, and that it was some great facetious snarky goodness.

I'm not sure I want his *essence* in my big glass of ice-cold SG, thankya.


Joanna said...

Into the Soylent Green vats with you, prof.

I'm not eating that.

c said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

Be sure to heat the vat to at least 185 degrees, and hold it at that temp for at least 15 minutes.

This all presumes that the slurry is properly masticated before heating.

Nathan said...

He would only provide a sour and desperate aftertaste.

Throw him on the garbage pile and let the crows have him.

og said...

Oh not just no but hell no. This turd doesn't belong in anyones punchbowl.

rickn8or said...

global village idiot--
Life's too short to waste your time reading drivel.

TJP said...

Don't feel left out by the liberal arts scientists; we've got our own blue-collar ones (from the comments):

"Lame article. You only have to look at history. 500 years ago most of the planet was covered in ice."

These two deserve each other.

theirritablearchitect said...

Someone hand this guilt-ridden slob and length of rope...and I suppose you'd need to tie the noose for him too, and probably design and build the gallows (let's face it, a Lit Prof probably doesn't have the tool set for doing so) for him.

Give him a hand into that noose too.

He wants to die.

I say let him get on with it.

Ken said...

Along related lines:

Call me excessively paranoid if you like, but the question "Cui bono?" crossed my mind when Deepwater Horizon went down, and it ain't going away, neither.

(Caveat: Although I usually know which end of the tool to hold, and to wear eye protection at all times, if there is one thing I am not, it's an engineer. So I don't know what would be involved in extemporized sabotage of an offshore drilling platform, or whether it's even feasible.)

ravenshrike said...

Clearly TJP, he merely left out the words hundred thousand from his post.

staghounds said...

So what caused the 1783 Icelandic volcano eruption that killed or drove away about a third of the population?

Sheesh, I wish I could make up stories like this character. Beats working.

reflectoscope said...

I have it on good authority that the rocks are perfectly sociable as long as you don't light a fire in their mouth.


Blast Hardcheese said...

To steal a line from Schlock Mercenary:

I'd punch him but I don't want to get stupid all over my hands.

Timmeehh said...

"This may come as a shock, but the Earth is not actually sentient. It is not Gaia. It is not your mother. It is a great big rock."

Being sentient and being a rock are not mutually exclusive. Just look at congress.

Nathan said...

No, no. Congresscritters aren't sentient.

docjim505 said...

The bigger problem is that a major news outlet gives fools like this a megaphone.

But what can you expect in a world that takes Algore seriously as a scientific authority?

Anonymous said...

From Joe in PNG:

Guys, handing this sorry sack of sad a rope is a waste of good rope. The typical weepy "OMG Gaia hates us" type want to throw us in the vats.
You see, all this drivel is just a bit of ritualistic confession. But deep down, he feels that he's a really great friend to the Earth and environment. Why, he even had solar panels put on his brand new 20,000 sq ft oceanfront summer home! So Gaia is totally down with him, dawg.
But us, the great unwashed, suv driving, rednecked, teabagging (grits teeth) right wing, (shudder) gun owning clingers... well, that's different. The Great Earth Spirit sends earthquakes and volcanos to destroy people who drive instead of take the bus.

Now don't you lot feel bad?

wv: inded- now agree and off yourself.

Kristopher said...


Anthropogenic Plate Tectonics is settled SCIENCE!

First Guam is in danger of flipping, and now global warming is setting Iceland off.

You should do your bit and buy a Stop Plate Tectonics! t-shirt.

nbc said...

I'm not eating that.

It'll go well with brussel sprouts.

wv. dishe (How does google know?)

D.W. Drang said...


Kristopher said...


If it's all one big continent, it not in danger of flipping over, like Guam!

The Jack said...

"When people stop believing in God, they don't believe in nothing -- they believe in anything." -- GK Chesterton

This is a religion.

It has higher powers, has rituals, sins, indulgences, and it all works on faith.

Calling this "science" is darkly cynical.

atlharp said...

Well if he feels that way, I say there ain't nothing like a good old fashioned Thelma and Louise moment. Maybe he can film it and put it on Youtube!

Sendarius said...

Nathan said:
No, no. Congresscritters aren't sentient.

Oh, but they ARE.

Sentient adj. endowed with feeling and unstructured consciousness

Now if you had said that they weren't SAPIENT (adj. acutely insightful and wise), I would have agreed.

rickn8or said...

It IS settled; all this seismic activity is caused by immodestly-dressed women.

Tam said...


"'Til I noticed the quotation marks I thought that was you, and that it was some great facetious snarky goodness."

I was putting the essence of liberal guilt into a made-up quote, not quoting from the guy's book (which is no less silly...)

Anonymous said...


"I was putting the essence of liberal guilt into a made-up quote, not quoting from the guy's book (which is no less silly...)"

I know, Tam...just being a bit facetious my ownself...


Tam said...

I was afeared that I was being subtly chided for engaging in a bit of fake-but-accurate Rathery. :D

Anonymous said...

No fear, appreciation Rather.

I ain't that subtle.