WE’D RATHER FEEL THAN THINK
The late physicist Alan Cromer suggested that scientific thinking is not a natural process for the seven billion of us who muddle through this life. “Human beings, after all, love to believe in spirits and gods,” he said. “Science, which asks them to see things as they are and not as they believe or feel them to be, undercuts a primary human passion.”
BLOOMINGTON REDUCES ITS GAS PAIN
Environmental issues, both local and global, are in the news this Saturday morning.
The Herald Times reports that the City of Bloomington used five percent less gasoline in its fleet vehicles during the first half of this year, as compared to the same span in 2010.
Good news, no?
Less Of This Here
It’s important to keep in mind, though, that Bloomington, being the capital-in-exile of the former Soviet Union, is chock-full of liberals, Democrats, and other sinners who go in for that kind of Earth-y stuff.
The rest of this holy land? Well, you know.
WHAT DO THOSE DUMB SCIENTISTS KNOW ANYWAY?
So, the South Africa climate talks are petering out with no agreement in sight.
It’s the usual snag: the big countries (like you-know-which holy land) that pollute most are pushing for a tepid pact to curb greenhouse gases and other flotsam and jetsam. Developing nations, which have a lot less to lose economically, want strong environmental safeguards.
I understand the motivations of corporate robber barons and their coatholders in Congress who want to forestall any restrictions. It costs dough, after all, to sanitize smokestacks that belch toxins.
The Sweet Smell Of Success
Why, though, would that certain segment of the general populace that drools before any TV screen with Fox News on it not want stringent global environmental laws? Don’t they want to breathe fresh air or drink clean water?
Perhaps not. Perhaps they wish only to inhale Camels and slurp Diet Coke.
Anyway, that gang doesn’t believe the overwhelming majority of climatologists who are convinced humankind is mucking up the atmosphere so badly that Hurricane Katrina in a few decades will seem like a spring shower.
Many of them do believe in things like ghosts, UFO visitations, astrology, intelligent design, spontaneous human combustion, numerology, angels, homeopathy, feng shui, clairvoyance, Nostradamus, and other fairy tales.
In that sense, the Fox News audience is far more “natural” than I am.
MERCY MERCY ME
Heck, let’s stick with the ecology. Here’s the final track on side one of Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On?” vinyl disc, released in May, 1971. For my money, it’s the best pop album ever made. Enjoy.
WE DO FACEBOOK SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO
◗ Chicago Sun-Times movie critic Roger Ebert can’t speak anymore but his voice rings out louder than ever these days. He’s become a writing machine. He reminds us that Kirk Douglas is now 95 years old.
By the way, you have to read Roger’s take on the Occupy Movement. He goes a little too soft on the Democratic Party, IMHO, but his righteous indignation is refreshing.
◗ And so we’ll stick with the Sun-Times. Columnist Neil Steinberg writes today about the Chicago Police. The boys in powder blue will be on world display next spring with the G-8 and NATO summits coming to town. The CPD has been tarnished through the years by the Summerdale Scandal, the ’68 Convention, the Jon Burge torture case, and too many others to name here. I personally took a beating in the back seat of a squad car once for the unforgivable sin of being a mouthy sixteen-year-old. Steinberg is no more popular with Chicago’s cops today than dopey kids like me were back then. His FB link illustrates why.
FYI: It was Steinberg who, as a pseudonymous critic of a well-known, pathologically flatulent Chicago newspaper columnist back in the ’90s, inspired the title for this feature. I wish I could tell you what Steinberg’s nom de plume was or who was the blowhard he skewered but, well, I just can’t.