Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Human Energy Needs vs. 'Mother Earth'

Sometimes, the real motive behind the anti-fossil fuel movement is exposed for all to see. In Southern New Jersey, South Jersey Gas is trying to get approval to build a 22-mile natural gas pipeline through part of what is known as the Pinelands. The purpose of the pipeline is to enable a coal-fired electric generating plant to comply with a state regulators’ order to convert to natural gas.

Like pipelines all over NJ and America, South Jersey Gas’ application faces fierce opposition from climate catastrophists. Most opposition at least pays lip service to human well-being to cover up the anti-humanist premises of environmentalism.

But this letter was refreshingly blunt: S.J. Gas pipeline bad for Mother Earth. Steven Fenichel wrote, in part:

At last there is a slender ray of hope for Mother Earth: A lawsuit has been filed against the Pinelands Commission and the state Board of Public Utilities (BPU)over their approvals of the South Jersey Gas Co. pipeline.

I don't believe that ordinary citizens who support this 22-mile natural gas pipeline through the Pinelands realize how dangerously close to the point of no return the Earth is to irreversible, calamitous climate change from fossil-fuel derived greenhouse gasses.

For the sake of Mother Earth, our future generations and ourselves, may the lawsuit filed by the Sierra Club-N.J. and NJ Environment receive justice in this morally challenged time.

But less hope for humans.

I left these comments, slightly edited for clarity:

The Earth is not a mother. It is not a conscious entity of any kind. It is a giant ball of raw materials. Human beings survive and thrive by harvesting these raw materials, turning them into resources that then can be turned into life-enhancing material goods and services—like fossil fuels.

Energy is the industry of industries that powers the technological improvements to the Earth, turning the hostile and dangerous natural environment into one conducive to human well-being. Fossil fuels are the most progressive energy source we currently have, providing the cheap, plentiful, reliable energy we need to live clean, healthy, prosperous lives. From the standpoint of human life as the moral standard of value, natural gas pipelines are good, because they deliver the energy of life that powers humans’ ability to remake the Earth in the image of their values.

“Mother Earth” is a fantasy peddled by those who value unimproved, unaltered nature above human well-being. The idea of a “Mother Earth” is a superstition more befitting a primitive witch doctor than an enlightened mind. Don’t listen to these climate witch doctors—euphemistically called “environmentalists”—who want to take away the energy our lives and environmental safety depend on. These days, the witch doctors seem to be wherever any reliable energy project is proposed. Morality is not on their side. The moral high ground is occupied by the people who value human life above raw materials. Thank God for the Pinelands Commission’s courageous stance in support of the pipeline.

The author of the letter, Steven Fenichel, MD, replied directly to me:

This is the view that the Earth is to be dominated and exploited.

It clashes with the indigenous cultures who were caring stewards of Mother Earth. " Man did not weave the web of life he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web he does to himself".

The Earth will show sooner than later which philosophy is connected to life and which to death.

If you ever doubted that anti-humanism and mysticism lies behind environmentalism, this removes all doubt. We have no value. We are mere “strands” in the “web of life.”

I left this response to Mr. Fenichel’s reply:

The Earth will show sooner than later which philosophy is connected to life and which to death.”

“The Earth”—i.e., reality—already did. Just compare the miserable, short, brutish, poverty-riddled, sickly, hopelessly stagnant lives of the peoples of “indigenous cultures” past (and present) to the lives industrialized people live today, where increasing use of reliable energy from fossil fuels correlates to better and longer lives for more and more billions of human beings. It’s the life of a glorified animal vs. a life proper to human beings. Primitive life is what it means to be “caring stewards of Mother Earth”—except that there’s nothing caring about wanting that.

The ability and freedom to “dominate and exploit the Earth” for human betterment and flourishing is precisely what’s needed to live like a human being.

I shudder to think of what awaits my grandchildren should the Steven Fenichel’s get their way. And he calls himself an “MD.”

Related Reading:

Fossil Fuels and Climate Change: Remember Life Before Them

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