Misplaced Priorities

The effects of climate change are predicted to bring us our hottest summer ever and one with even more hurricanes, tornadoes, and extreme wildfires than past years. We are told that we should expect rolling electricity ‘blackouts’ this summer as power companies try to protect the electric grid from damage due to overuse.  We have become a nation known for its mass shootings, known for people who carry a gun into churches, schools, and grocery stores just looking for trouble – we are not safe shopping for food, and our children are no longer safe in school.  There is a war in Ukraine (just in case you’ve forgotten) that is likely to expand into other nations and may well ultimately involve the U.S.  Our voting rights are being stripped, states are passing ridiculous laws to deny women of their rights and children of the right to learn those things they need to know. Far too many people cannot afford adequate, let alone quality healthcare, and the quality of healthcare for the average person is poor, to say the least.  Women’s rights, voting rights, civil rights, are being rolled back by the Courts at an alarming rate.  Racism and homophobia are on the rise, with violent episodes of each happening around the nation.  And yet … what are the people of the United States concerned most about?  Inflation. Yep, the rising costs of fuel and groceries are hitting their pocketbooks directly, so those somehow matter more than protecting the planet or saving people’s lives.  Somebody find me a tiny violin, please. 🎻

Mind you, I do realize that inflation is a problem, more for the poor than for the rest of us.  But it is not a problem that is unique to the U.S. … it is global!!!  Every nation on earth is suffering to a greater or lesser extent for numerous reasons, not the least of which is disrupted supply chains due to Putin’s war against Ukraine!  And the people doing the most complaining are those who, while it may be annoying and inconvenient, CAN still afford to put enough fuel in their cars to get where they need … yes, I said need … to go and CAN still afford enough food to feed their families!  They are more worried about whether they can take a cross-country vacation than whether their own children are safe in school and whether their grandchildren will have air to breathe!!!

These people need to get over themselves, to learn to be a bit more frugal, combine errands to use less fuel, turn the damn a/c off at night, eat chicken or fish instead of beef … better yet, what better time to go vegan?  Life in any nation is going to have its ups and downs … we have far more pressing and critical problems in this country than the price of a gallon of gasoline or the price of grapes.  If we don’t wake up and wake our legislators to the effects of climate change, it will soon be too late.  Oh, speaking of which … a headline in the New York Times caught my eye yesterday …

How an Organized Republican Effort Punishes Companies for Climate Action

A few snippets from the article

  • Across the country, Republican lawmakers and their allies have launched a campaign to try to rein in what they see as activist companies trying to reduce the greenhouse gases that are dangerously heating the planet.
  • In Texas, a new law bars the state’s retirement and investment funds from doing business with companies that the state comptroller says are boycotting fossil fuels. Conservative lawmakers in 15 other states are promoting similar legislation.
  • The pushback has been spearheaded by a group of Republican state officials that has reached out to financial organizations, facilitated media appearances and threatened to punish companies that, among other things, divest from fossil fuels.
  • And last week, the global head of responsible investments for HSBC Asset Management, Stuart Kirk, made a provocative presentation titled “Why investors need not worry about climate risk” at a Financial Times event in London. Describing climate risk as a problem in the far-off future, Mr. Kirk said, “Climate change is not a financial risk that we need to worry about,” adding, “Who cares if Miami is six meters underwater in 100 years?”

If you needed further proof that people live for today and to hell with tomorrow, there it is!  I think we need to be far more worried about global climate change that is a lasting problem, not one that will be solved in our lifetimes, perhaps never if we don’t get busy, than about temporary inflation.  Yes, rising prices are a concern, but not nearly as much so as children being shot and killed in schools, the planet heading toward disaster for all life forms, a war that could yet turn into World War III, and so much more.  Priorities, my friends … priorities.

60 thoughts on “Misplaced Priorities

  1. Jill, the women in Australia got it as a large bloc is credited with sweeping out conservatives after nine years. The issues were simple – climate change, child-care, medicare funding and integrity. The wanted leaders they could trust to represent the people and not kowtow to industry at all costs. Here, dealing with climate change, recurring gun deaths, civil rights abuses, debt have to be dealt with.

    As for inflation, presidents get too much credit and blame for the economy, but do offer headwinds and tailwinds. But, if we want to put it all on their shoulders, we should remember Trump inherited an economy in its 91st consecutive month of economic growth, a more than doubled stock market and six straight years of 2 + million in annual job growth. He turned the keys over to Biden with a recession, in part due to his botching of our pandemic response. So, for those who want to say what a great job Trump did with the economy (it did continue for awhile and got a little better with the tax cut for a little while), those same people just said Obama was a great president, as the economy did very well when he was in the White House.

    Keith

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    • Indeed … a few of those women in Australia are friends and I’m so proud and happy for them! Now the question is … how do we effect a similar change here? Why don’t the people of this nation want leaders we can trust to act in our best interests?

      You’re right … the president does get entirely too much credit and/or blame for the economy over which he often has little control. And why, for Pete’s Sake, is the economy more important to people than the fact that we are rapidly running out of time on climate change that may well lead to the deaths of nearly every species on the globe? Or why is it more important than our very lives when we enter a grocery store or our children’s lives when we send them off to learn? Inflation can be dealt with in a number of ways, such as being more frugal, cutting back on some things, making a few sacrifices. It’s a temporary situation. Climate change is not. We humans are very self-focused, it seems.

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  2. Found my way here from Pendantry’s reblog, and I share your concerns. I live in Finland, one of the Nordic countries next to Scandinavia, and we’re not safe from thoughts of invasion, nuclear WWIII, and so on. It’s too depressing to even think of and inflation is the last thing on my mind – but hey, I’m not an investor! Climate change and those horrible, horrible school shootings are incredibly worrisome. In a way it was a relief to read that I’m not the only one troubled by all this. It seems so many are just going on with life as usual. But what can we do to change all this?

    Interesting in one of your pictures to notice that at least the corona virus isn’t worrying Americans anymore!

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    • Thank you so much for visiting, reading, and commenting! Pendantry is a great guy! Ahhhh … Finland is, as I recall, one of the top 3 countries in the World Happiness Index year after year. I’m sure it’s nervewracking right now, not knowing what Putin will ultimately do, for he is not, in my book anyway, completely sane. He has a dream of creating a new Soviet-style empire before his life is over and he will step on anyone and anything to achieve his dream.

      You are asking the same question I have been asking for years now: What can we do to change this, to wake people up to the realities of such things as climate change and gun lunacy? Sadly, I have no answers … it seems that every year there is more ignorance, more people wearing their rose-coloured glasses, claiming that climate change, the Covid pandemic, and more are “hoaxes” and that we should just get on with having fun, fun, fun!

      As for Covid … you’re right. Then again, people in this country have rebelled against EVERYTHING since the pandemic first began. They rebelled against industries and business shutting down to keep people safe. They rebelled against mask mandates put in place for their own safety. They rebelled against vaccines. And so, today only about 2/3 of the nation is vaccinated, and when I go into a store, I am often the only person wearing a mask. This is a nation comprised of some very good people, but also some very narrow-minded, selfish people.

      Again, thanks for visiting and I hope you’ll return!

      Liked by 1 person

      • I don’t think we’ll be one of the happiest countries in the next survey, thanks to our neighbour!

        We never went into full lockdown, we only had recommendations and it was left up to people to use their own judgement. Most were pretty polite and considerate (masks, quarantines, etc) but there are always people who don’t care, especially if they had it already.

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        • It will definitely be interesting to see what demographic changes come about in the next World Happiness Report, given the ongoing war in Ukraine and the threat posed to so many other nations. But, to a very large degree, the ‘happiness’ is measured from within, and you guys are doing things right. You cannot control the external threat, but your people are happier than most with the way things are inside your country, and that means a lot.

          Take care, my new friend!

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  3. ‘Why am I here,’ Mr Kirk wails in the depths of Hell, a demon taps him on the shoulder holds up a device which plays back:
    Mr. Kirk said, “Climate change is not a financial risk that we need to worry about,” adding, “Who cares if Miami is six meters underwater in 100 years?”
    ‘Turns out,’ the demon says ‘That guy upstairs is very particular about that planet he made for you guys. Now getting shovelling,’

    Liked by 1 person

          • ‘You -bad word’ Sheila said the other day on reading a news feed. Turns out that in response to the 2016-2020 stain on the Whitehouse and his dumb-ass idea that schools need to be guarded and not Ukraine.
            He’s gonna put tanks outside schools?
            Stupid does not even come close…. Even Very Bad Word Stupid is almost a compliment to the oaf.

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            • 😱 Sheila … mild-mannered, kind, sweet, Sheila … said THAT??? 👍👍 Way to go, Sheila!!!

              Oh yeah … now they are floating the idea of having schools with only a single door, razor-wire fencing, and armed guards, rather like a prison. Who’s being punished here … the armed gun nuts or the children??? Yes, even the worst word I can think of is almost a compliment … only twice in my entire life have I wished someone dead, and he is one.

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  4. Pingback: MISPLACED PRIORITIES. |jilldennison.com | Ramblings of an Occupy Liberal

  5. Pure greed! These people, and their political slaves, already own most of the money in the world, money that is out of circulaton because it is sitting in their computerized bank accounts, doing nothing but making more money, and more money, and more money. They have no need for it, no use for it, but all the same they want it, and the more they have the more they want.
    I have to ask them, What good is money going to do when there is no world left to do anything in? When there are no people left to do things for them? When their paid armies of secutity guards turn on them because there is no food left to buy with whatever wages they are being paid?
    As long as they continue to support fossil fuel industries, all the science on the workd cannot save us. Everytime they fly their private jets around the world to tranport 2 or 3 people, they are adding enough pollution into the air to set us back another year. So what if Miami is 6′ deep in seawater in 100 years? If Miami is 6′ deep, then so will be Los Angeles, and New York City, and London, and Brussels, and every coastal city in the world! Where will all those billions of people migrate to? When the usable land of the earth’s surface shrinks by 30% or more, while the population of the earth keeps increasing, where are all those people going to live, and how are we going to feed them?

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    • All excellent points and I am in complete agreement. But the question remains … what to do about it? How do we wake up those people who deny that which would make their life a bit less ‘convenient’? At the current rate, if we don’t make some major changes, I suspect Planet Earth will be uninhabitable for many life forms including humans by the end of this century. How do we convince the naysayers?

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    • You have spoken the truth, Raw God, but given human nature there is little that can be done to avoid all the consequences of this degree of apathy. Our course is set and it will not change because I think Humanity has become a little bit suicidal in the past few decades.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Yes, America has problems but I still think I would rather be here than in some other country where dictatorships and authoritarians govern every facet of daily life.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You speak the truth:It is rather here (guess you mean USA) than in any other country where dictators and authoritarians govern every facet of daily life.

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    • My fear is that we are headed on that very path, given the challenges to voting rights and the belief by far too many people that “somehow it will all work out — it always has”. Given a choice, I’d probably opt for one of the Scandinavian countries, else Switzerland. But alas, at my age and without much in the way of financial resources, I’ll just stay here and keep using my voice to fight against the evils that I see.

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    • Then, I would suggest sir you bear than in mind and hold close to your heart the wish to keep your nation so.
      Whether Benjamin Franklin or Dr Franklin Well said these words or something similar this sentiment dear ‘A republic, if you can keep it’.
      I have been an avid watcher of the USA for 60 years and felt it my adopted land (for all its flaws); these past few years I have seen the nation gripped by a hysteria from one group who placed one fellow ill-suited to the Whitehouse and do not have the respect for the Constitution to accept the will of the People.
      We have seen this happen in Europe over and over through the centuries. Nations have been damaged, even ruined and lives lost. Repressions have followed
      Be vigilant and willing to upload your constitution if you do not want to experience those gifts you value gradual taken away from you. The warning signs are there.

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  7. Other than having the increased number of massacres, where I live, is, similar to what’s going on in the U.S., because guns aren’t that easily accessible where I’m currently living, and, the world’s in a total mess right now all right!

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    • You said it all with that last statement: The world’s in a total mess right now. Sigh. But, we cannot simply ‘sigh’ and hope that somebody, somewhere, is doing something to fix it. We MUST keep on fighting, keep trying to bring about change.

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  8. And there they say they love their children and grandchildren but happily destroy their future… in Germany they say: “after me the flood” meaning I don’t give a donkey’s tail about the future. How suicidal is our species? Even though I think this inflation thi g could be used. Just make sure people know it saves them money to go vegan or use eco-friendly energy and they might move their lazy behinds 🤗

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    • Exactly, my friend! How anybody can turn a blind eye to the effects of all the damage already done and currently being done to our planet is beyond my comprehension. As you say, if people truly love their children and grandchildren, why wouldn’t they want to make a better, brighter future for them, rather than simply passing on and exacerbating the problems we have? When that man said he didn’t care if Miami was underwater in 100 years, I was literally stunned! Such ignorance is unforgivable! Sigh. 🤗

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      • One of our co-workers said a similar thing: I won’t make more than 20 more years here so why do I care? He has two sons… it’s unbelievable how well humans can imitate these big birds and stick their head in the sand 😪

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        • What a selfish, narrow-minded attitude!!! Even if I didn’t have children of my own, I would care what happens to life on earth in future generations! It’s rather like burning down your own house before you die so that nobody else can live in it! Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Ostriches, yes … far too many, it seems. Sigh.

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  9. Reblogged this on Wibble and commented:
    A good rant here from Jill; it’s right on the nose. I believe that that the problem is twofold: perverted greed and lust for power by the elites who pull the strings, and cognitive dissonance on the part of the unthinking masses, whose minds refuse to acknowledge anything that might disturb their view of reality and ‘normality’

    Of course the former cynically manipulate the latter. It’s been going on for decades, and I don’t see how any great awakening (particularly in the light of the hijacking of the simple word ‘woke’) can possibly happen in time to turn this ‘unsinkable’ Titanic before it hits the iceberg. (My post ‘Illustrating exponential growth using movement towards a target‘ scheduled for later today is on that very theme….)

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  10. A great and timely post as usual Jill. My new post about a huge oil pipe covering part of Africa covers the ignorance of people not worried about the future of the planet and the effects this pipeline will have. It’s long and I didn’t even cover the effect it has on girls and women over there or the huge swathes of land in protected areas that may see the end of elephant for ever.
    cwtch

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    • I clicked on your name, David, hoping that it would lead me to the post to which you refer. I ended up at your ‘barsetshirediaries’ blog, the last post on which is from 2020. The websites linked from your Gravatar left me none the wiser… care to share a link?

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    • Thanks, David! I did read your post and was stunned, but then I’m often stunned by the lack of concern for our planet by so many people. Wildlife seems not to matter to most people … obviously, or they wouldn’t be out hunting them for sport! But they seem unfazed by the idea that potable water, breathable air, and edible food may all disappear by the turn of the century. Sigh. It was a good post … I sent a link to Pendantry per his request. We’ve got to figure out how to get your comments working again!!!
      Cwtch

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  11. Pingback: Misplaced Priorities | Filosofa’s Word | Ned Hamson's Second Line View of the News

    • It amazes me how shallow and narrow-minded some people are, caring not one whit for the greater good. Climate change, particularly, should be the #1 issue on everyone’s mind today, but … half the people seem not to care at all. 😢 xx

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