Just Stop Oil have been up to their usual tricks. They dug a tunnel under a road in Grays, but after 13 days they tried to sneak out for a Big Mac and got arrested. [Not really. I don’t know why they gave up.]
“This is the reality of climate collapse and it is happening right here in the UK, it is happening all around the world and it is happening now,” [One of the troglodytes] said in a statement published by Just Stop Oil.BBC
After the tunnel, they decided to block the road at Kingsbury Oil Terminal, but an injunction against them doing that was still in place from earlier in the year. 51 were arrested and remanded in custody, charged with the breach.
As the nation mourns Queen Elizabeth II, climate change protesters said their actions on Wednesday were “not disrespectful”, claiming King Charles III had spoken at the COP26 summit of being on a “warlike footing” in the battle to save the planet.BBC
Among the dimbulbs staffing this protest were a number of grannies. One lives in Yorkshire, so her “story” was picked up by the Yorkshire Post. She also once lived in Exeter, so her “story” was also picked up by Devon Live.
So, what were her reasons for allegedly defying the injunction? Quoth Yorkshire Post:
Retired occupational therapist Julia Mercer, from Todmorden, took part in the demonstration at Kingsbury oil terminal near Tamworth on Wednesday because she is worried for the future of her baby grandchild.
Mrs Mercer said: “I’ve had an amazing life with so many privileges. Now it’s payback time.”
Yes folks, having had an amazing and privileged life, Granny Mercer has decided that her latest grandchild must not be allowed to enjoy hers.
She added: “I look at my nine-month-old granddaughter and try to imagine the world as it could very well be when she is my age. I find I cannot do this; it’s simply too painful a future to contemplate for her. I will do anything within my power to change this: it’s the inertia and unholy power of business as usual that creates this future and it’s this that we challenge in the courts and on the streets.”
To me this seems like a mind constantly resetting itself in order to turn nonsense into sense. If Mercer has her way, her grandchild’s life will be far worse than it will if she just stays at home and knits her a bobble hat for winter.
Quoth Devon Live:
Now living in Todmorden, Yorkshire, with her husband, Julia has eight grandchildren between ages 23 and 9 months. She loves gardening and was a member of Exeter Community Agriculture. She helps make videos of dramatized Bible Stories to spark discussion in schools. Part of her motivation is the ‘sheer injustice of climate breakdown’.
The sheer injustice of climate breakdown! Define climate breakdown, please. Quoting Mercer,
“I can no longer ignore what’s happening to the people of our world who did the least to create it and yet are suffering the most. There are too many hideous examples. One that breaks my heart is that in Bangladesh as the seawater rises it salinates fresh drinking water and pregnant women are miscarrying their babies. I absolutely owe it to these women to be on the streets shouting for justice.”
None of us wants Bangladesh to sink beneath the waves, but “Just Stopping Oil” won’t help. Helping Bangladesh’s people to become wealthy will help. Seawater is probably infiltrating because fresh water is being extracted. Building dams upstream means that the supply of sediment to the delta is reduced, and compaction as the land dries leads to the ground level dropping. Not a good situation for a dense and extremely poor population, especially one in the firing line of tropical cyclones.
Another JSO granny comes from Kendal, so her “story” was picked up by the Westmorland Gazette. Quote:
Ms Rennie-Nash, a retired teacher and grandmother of two, said: “I’m getting more and more desperate and angry with the Government as it drives us closer and closer to the precipice of irreversible climate catastrophe.
“It’s using taxpayers’ money to subsidise the fossil fuel industry to the tune of hundreds of millions of pounds each week while people are dying in their homes because they can’t afford to heat them.
“I will not stand by and watch obscene corporate and political greed rob my grandchildren of a liveable planet.”
Light on facts and high on passion, Rennie-Nash’s plan is to ban cheap energy, and so rob her grandchildren of the life she thinks the “irreversible climate catastrophe” is going to rob from them. And in the real world, a series of entirely avoidable energy decisions by previous governments have left us up **** creek. First because we did not continue building nuclear. Then because we got rid of coal. Then because we decided to plumb in large quantities of “whenever they feel like it” generators, enforcing a high dependence on gas, while running down our own extraction and storage. Dumb and dumberer.
Where do these incredible JSO misapprehensions come from? We all know that unchallenged apocalyptic hogwash floods the media, including the outlets that are supposed to be authoritative and even have what they call, without a smirk, “reality checks.” I rarely hear the scientists pushing back on the ludicrous terms like “climate breakdown” that are used. All I really hear is scientists reinforcing the message by saying this or that disaster was in effect caused by modern civilisation’s addiction to fossil fuels. The JSO people actually believe this stuff – I don’t doubt that. But none of it is true. It’s squit.
Quoth another JSO activist [not a granny this time]:
“…we have just a few years to avoid the locking-in of human extinction.”
For someone who believes such an absurdity, blocking an oil terminal is a perfectly rational response, as is defying court injunctions and mooning at the judge (I don’t think they have tried this measure of defiance yet; they could have STOP on one cheek and OIL on the other; I guess they’ll need a good friend with a Sharpie to help them with that).
Fortunately for us, and them, humanity is not doomed. Even if an impossible apocalyptic climate scenario were to be realised, we would not go extinct. Gaia would have her work cut out to wipe out this particular rat. My own understanding of the situation is that the planet will be no less liveable in 2100 than it is now. And I sincerely believe that, and yes, I have searched for reasons that we might be doomed. I have found none. Just Stop Oil has to tell us what we will die of. If it be famine, war, and disease, I have news for them: their project is more likely to lead to those things than continuing the use of fossil fuels.
The JSO 51, including the grannies, appeared in court a couple of days ago. This from the Guardian, as highlighted in Open Mic by Mark:
But when they appeared at the Queen Elizabeth court in Birmingham and the Royal Courts of Justice in London on Thursday, they refused to comply, standing on chairs, turning their backs to the judge and reading out prepared statements about the scale of the crisis.
One of the defendants took off his shirt to reveal the words “Sham justice kills kids” written on his body, while another held up a copy of David Wallace-Wells’s book The Uninhabitable Earth and recommended it to the court.
Many of the protesters made it clear they would continue to take action at the Kingsbury terminal if they were released on bail, despite an injunction prohibiting protests at the site still being in force.
The question arises: should we be jailing these JSO grannies and their accomplices if they are found to have breached the injunction? I say no. There is no room in jail for all the scallies we need to lock up to protect the public, so locking up ill-informed but obviously honourable demonstrators makes absolutely no sense. On the other hand, they will just go out and do the same thing again if set free, imposing their will on the rest of us. A conundrum, no doubt. If only there was an option to teach the grannies how their lives of privilege and their long and – ahem – active retirements would be impossible without oil. I wonder if any of them know how their food is produced and transported, for instance? Any oil products in that coat you wear? Perhaps a history lesson, too. You know what the life of average Briton was like in George III’s time? That’s what you want for your grandchildren. (Aha! Is this why they glued themselves to The Hay Wain?) Ever heard of the Bhola cyclone, which struck what is now Bangladesh in 1970 and killed upwards of 300,000 of its people? What if those people had good housing, there were good roads leading to safe places, and every family had a petrol car?
Now, all of us would be prepared to break the law of the land under certain circumstances. Probably extreme circumstances in most cases. My recommendation when asked to appear in front of a judge after such an event occurs is as follows: attend at the appointed time. Stand for the judge. Remain quiet unless required to speak. Admit your guilt. Undertake to obey the court (and mean it). Take your punishment in good heart, because you believe your actions were worth it. Don’t wave an unbelievable work of eschatological science fiction in your hand and recommend it to the court. Don’t reveal inane writing on your chest. Don’t turn your back.
And most importantly, don’t moon the judge.
This does not constitute legal advice, which I am not qualified to give.
Some JSO types at Kingsbury. (I think? This might be from a previous protest.) Not all of them are grannies. I’ve tried to turn it into their signature orange, but haven’t quite got that right. Hoo well.