I have been following the mucky history of 'fracking' for some time on The Diane Rehm Show. (Regular readers know I get a lot of my foresight from American Public Radio, because whatever horrors are visited on our cousins in the USA, inevitably crosses the Atlantic … ) The promise that fracking was 'safe' because the carcinogens added to the high pressure water jets that break the shale rocks to release the gas, would not pollute drinking water, turned out to be undeliverable. “Ah yes!” The oil industry reassures us, “Faulty kit, not dangerous practice!” Well, really, if the oil giants couldn't get something as important as public health right straight away, why trust them with a second bite of the cherry?
And it's happening. Here it comes. Our lovely government that promised local autonomy is now saying, “Except when you don't allow fracking!” So just wait for it … Some of our most beautiful landscapes will be despoiled, and the lives of many of our citizens disrupted by the roads that have to be laid to accommodate the heavy plant that has to go in and out, by those very goings in and out, and inevitably, someone, somewhere will get a dose of something nasty and everyone in government will be shocked and dismayed, like they didn't see THAT one coming. …
The best science says we can't take out of the ground any more of the greenhouse-gas emitting hydrocarbons without destroying the biosphere. The legacy we leave to our descendants, if we carry on like this, if we allow fracking, is a dying planet. But hey! Politicians only think in bursts of five years, and crossing their fingers, they hope the mess they create now, will either go away, or get blamed on someone else … And now, who knows? With luck, there might not be anyone left to blame them anyway!
My hope lies in a massive awakening of consciousness in the sleeping populace. I thought that very unlikely until hundreds of thousands of disenfranchised Brits joined the Labour Party to vote for Jeremy Corbyn. Who is a both red AND green. You should hear the establishment squeal! They didn't see THAT one coming either.
To destroy the planet for short-term gain is immoral. Corbyn offers a real, alternative to the empowered self-interest that is the current system. He might not be able to stop the juggernaut, but he will stand in its way. Let's face it, someone has to. I, for one, will stand with him.
I am smitten by the number of hits to the story of my grandmother, Ellen Caroline Pitt, who died of complications in childbirth that would not have killed her and her child had she been rich. (She would have had adequate pre-natal care and been saved by a C-section.) The memories of those days are fading now, which isn’t a good thing all round, I think, as I listen to the stories of the men and women sent away by the state to starve when their benefits are stopped.
Well, yes, you stupid people, you SHOULD have gone to that interview, and for not doing so, you deserve to go hungry!
I am exaggerating, aren’t I? Nobody really says that? Maybe not, but it’s what happens. I do not like what we are becoming, and that’s a fact.
This is altogether too serious, so for a little light relief, I took the ‘Would You Make An Entrepreneur ‘ test on the BBC website.
Despite the fact that I signed up for working all the hours that God sends, I failed the test. Even though I lied, and answered ‘Endlessly Thinking Up Ways To,Make Money’ when I really should have owned up to ‘Having Fun’ as being my modus operandi as a teenager.
I thought it was a wind-up, but no, really, this test is promoted by GOV-UK.
I SERIOUSLY don’t like what we are becoming.
I could have opened up with, “Since Becoming Older”, but that's just boring. Who would read that? So.Since Becoming Enlightened, I have been become a whole lot lazier. In fact I would encourage Enlightenment as a good enough reason to wander aimlessly in the wild admiring trees, or to sit still for long periods of time with a beautific look upon one's face.” Wow!” I am thinking, which is probably not what the observers of my beatific countenance are thinking I'm thinking, “This is GREAT. All this doing next to nothing and getting admired for it! What a scam!”
You do know I'm joking. Right? Please engage 'Tongue In Cheek' mode.
The downside to Enlightenment is that once I start opening my mouth and engaging with people, they quickly realise I'm not very Enlightened at all. I get frustrated, angry, petty, and all the rest, just like everyone else. But Hey! Enlightenment has an answer to this too – SILENCE! I am now longer known to be frivolous and empty-headed ( not that I was either MUCH: I'm just making a point here) but WISE.
So here you have it. Sit still a lot, walk aimlessly about a bit, and keep your mouth shut. The secret of a mystical and fulfilling life, admired by all.