Recently, The Sun — hardly the most erudite or sophisticated of Britain's newspapers, I grant you — published a feature article entitled "Why is TV more keen on Paris Hilton than on saving the planet?" Actually, it's not so much an article as a write-up of an interview with none other than Al Gore.
"Al Gore is a man on a mission to save the planet — and is enraged that everyone else seems more interested in saving Paris Hilton," writes reporter Victoria Newton, who had a talk with the former Vice President.
Now, I'm a little tired of Gore's schtick. He is incapable of even trying to consider that there may be perfectly natural forces contributing to climate change, ones that mankind is powerless to act against. "He believes we have just ten years to begin saving the planet before it is too late," writes Newton. I wonder if Gore has considered a resolution to stop solar flares? Only ten years left, worth a shot! Let's all hope China and India will agree to that because they're certainly not about to reduce their carbon footprint anytime soon.
If Gore is really the environmentalist that he cracks himself up to be, why does he constantly harp on solely about global warming? Why does he never attack manufacturers and distributors alike over wasteful packaging? When was the last time you heard Gore even mention recycling? Why, if the environment is his biggest concern, does he never criticize unchecked mass immigration, encouraging more development and more energy usage such as it does? Can you, even in your wildest dreams, imagine Al Gore encouraging population control? Far too politically incorrect, better leave it off the agenda, even if that would prove to be the most environmentally friendly act of all.
Alas, global warming is scary stuff. And power-hungry people love to spook an electorate that cannot think for themselves.
But, you see, that is the very problem. No-one thinks about the big issues. Look at how the media treated the recent G8 conference in Germany as some rock-star event to make it palatable to the average Joe or Jane, because that's all these schmucks understand. Politics must be groovy or else people turn off and live vicariously through celebrities like Paris Hilton because their own lives are so vacuous and their heads so empty. Better to pretend that George Bush, Tony Blair, Vladimir Putin, Nicolas Sarkozy, et al are performers at Live 8 rather than world leaders discussing agendas as the G8.
Immigration bill? Who cares. Global warming? We'll talk about that later. War on Terror? We've got better things to think about. We just want to see Barry Bonds hit another home run, we want to listen to the latest Nelly Furtado album, we want to read about David and Victoria Beckham's adjustment to life in L.A., we want to watch Survivor, The Apprentice, Big Brother or whatever noxious reality-TV show floats our boat, we want to eat KFC and drink Pepsi and pretend that it's good for us (and subsequently blame our 300-pound butts on anyone but ourselves), we want to pray for poor little Britney Spears and most of all, we've got to rescue Paris Hilton from the indignity of jail. These are the things that matter most to your average person. Sad, but true.
So, Mr. Gore, I very much share your frustration with the fairy-tale priorities that the majority of people seem to have. You're well within your rights to be enraged over that. People daydream between the pages of OK! and People far too much and that is a big reason why the world may never change for the better. I don't blame you one bit for hating the reality of this thoughtless, sound bite-addicted, fast-food culture.
But please also realize that the doomsday scenario that you're peddling us might be a fairy tale too. You may very well find that you yourself have become part of this lazy "culture" who'll vote for the Greens if you say it's hip but are too busy stuffing their faces with "food" in polystyrene take-out containers to care what it all really means.