Opinion | Opinie 11/01/2010

I’m hoping to find time to write more about global warming (AGW to be precise), meanwhile I’ll just state my opinion:

Global warming will not be prevented, the Earth will warm up; and we will not even be able to limit the increase to 2 degrees.

So we’d better start to cope. In my darker (more sensible?) moments I’m thinking that I should put my money where my mouth is and 1) move to a country that will benefit from global warming or where the effects will be minimal and 2) find a job in a company that will make shitloads of money from global warming.

On to what I really want to write today; I recently read Isaac Asimov’s Foundation – great little book, looking forward to reading the rest of the series – and was struck by some of what Asimov wrote in the earlier parts. I think they sum up quite well why I think “AGW” is unstoppable.

(very short background: the “messenger” of the bad news (i.e. the predicted fall of the empire), Dr Seldon, is taken to court for high treason; this is the interrogation in court. Questioning is the advocate for the state, Answering is Dr Seldon)

Q (…) Would you repeat, Dr Seldon, your thoughts concerning the future of Trantor?

A. I have said, and I say again, that Trantor will lie in ruins within the next five centuries.

Q. You do not consider your statement a disloyal one?

A. No sir. Scientific truth is beyond loyalty and disloyalty.

Q. You are sure that your statement represents scientific truth?

A. I am.

Q. On what basis?

A. On the basis of the mathematics of psychohistory.

Q. Can you prove that this mathematics is valid?

A. Only to another mathematician.

Q. (…) Your claim then, is that your truth is of so esoteric a nature that it is beyond the understanding of a plain man. It seems to me that truth should be clearer than that, less mysterious, more open to the mind.

A. It presents no difficulties to some minds. The physics of energy transfer, which we know as thermodynamics, has been clear and true through all the history of mankind since the mythical ages, yet there may be people present who would find it impossible to design a power engine.

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