This evening I want to think about climate, covid and racism. Nothing too controversial then. In fact, let me generalise two and narrow the third. I wish to look at progress, real and perceived, in three key areas: environmentalism, public health and racial discrimination in the USA.
My thesis is pretty simple. In 1 and 3, I aver, there’s been too much progress for the liking of powerful vested interests, who’ve managed to persuade those with more emotion than sense that things are far worse than they really are. Whereas in public health we were being too optimistic, about viruses at least, until Covid-19 hit. Rational Optimist Matt Ridley being a key voice who admits he made that mistake. Though I think he might now say that we also got lucky.
Good answer to something of which Willis Eschenbach said pretty fairly Could you possibly be more ugly, vindictive, or condescending?
But Amy wasn’t the only one. Fresh from his triumph at the box-office in Planet of the Humans, Bill McKibben also sought to combine the same two of my three and got a fine answer on the US racism front:
That piece by Andrew McCarthy happens to be the best summary I’ve seen of the stats that convince me the ‘institutional racism’ story in the United States, about which we’ve been hearing so much, is by 2020 a myth. It wasn’t always a myth of course. Massive progress has been made.
Interestingly, unlike Amy and Bill, Jesse Jackson has been sticking to the fake news he knows and caring less about faux environmentalism. So two cheers, at least, for that.
I could say more but I want to see the anger and disappointment!