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August 20, 2013

Comments

rjmadden

Poetry and scything is clearly the way forward.

'Uncivilisation' indeed.

jimmy

The fracking thing is interesting. Until recently I never knew (or imagined) that the global warming debate has its' own 'gendered' stream of thought and research. I guess people have to find something to do with their gender studies degree...

David

‘Uncivilisation’ indeed.

You mustn’t scoff. These people are radical and heroic. Humanity, they say, isn’t particularly important but they’re going to save it anyway. By sitting in tepees – sorry, “conversational spaces” - while “weaving and whittling” and sharing poems. There’ll be “workshops in life-mapping and embodied experience.” They’ll also “help men reconcile their polarities.”

We should be thanking them for their brilliance.

Torquil Macneil

The picture of work that seems to be held by super-privileged dilettantes like Monbiot is hilarious. I suspect it is mostly got from watching shaving adverts. I wonder how much time the macho people in the gas industry really spend striding around in yellow hats relative to sitting in pokey offices fiddling about with spreadsheets.

rjmadden

Why am I not surprised that the Beeb's flagship economics editor was (is?) a Trotskyist?

tempdog

a macho fixation with extractive industries.

All right, who was the beach bully who kicked sand in George's face? You got a lot to answer for, buddy.

David

Why am I not surprised that the Beeb’s flagship economics editor was (is?) a Trotskyist?

Oh, don’t worry. Mr Mason may be a fan of “class war” and a credulous booster of Occupy, but his leftwing activism will no doubt be balanced by his Newsnight colleagues – editor Ian Katz and political editor Allegra Stratton, both former Guardianistas. Just like Mr Mason. Mr Katz was the utterly impartial journalist behind the Guardian’s “Operation Clark County” project, an unsuccessful letter-writing campaign to sway voters in Ohio against George Bush.

sackcloth and ashes

'Mr Katz was the utterly impartial journalist behind the Guardian’s “Operation Clark County” project, an unsuccessful letter-writing campaign to sway voters in Ohio against George Bush'.

So judging by that spectacular outcome I'd be surprised if 'Newsnight' makes it through to the New Year.

Bart

"Uncivilization 2013"

As brought to you by people who call themselves "progressives".


"Who wants to make speeches about sewage when you can stride manfully around drilling rigs in a hard hat and a yellow jacket?"

Sure, sewage workers wear the exact same gear, but when they do it it's in an effette and mincing fashion.


"extraction is an ideology, gendered and gendering"

And all this time I thought we did it to get stuff we need. Thanks for that gem of wisdom, George. I couldn't have come up with something that profound in a thousand years. Not even as a joke.

David

Sure, sewage workers wear the exact same gear, but when they do it it’s in an effete and mincing fashion.

Arf. By the way, Tim Worstall parses Mr Monbiot’s column here.

Liessa

Talking of 'artists and thinkers', here's another gem from the Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/photography-blog/2013/aug/19/art-peeping-photography-privacy-arne-svenson

The article itself actually takes a fairly neutral tone; what's interesting is the people in the comments who genuinely don't understand why anyone might have a problem with this. Particularly the ones who insist that if people leave their curtains open, they should just expect to be stalked and secretly photographed in their own homes by a stranger with a telephoto lens.

AC1

"rapidly ..depleting world"

They not realised there's never been MORE stuff (and more to come?).

However history tells us the fastest way to a shortage is socialism.

Torquil Macneil

I would love to see the Venn diagram of those opposed to fracking with those opposed to the closing of the coal mines under Thatcher (it's a crime!). I am guessing that the crossover would be large-ish.

Tim Newman

Pretty sure nobody would be wearing a yellow jacket around a drilling rig. It's not a construction site, which I guess is what he's thinking of. Anyone nearby would be wearing flameproof and non-sparking overalls, and if it was pissing down or cold, a jacket which wouldn't be of the high-viz type. The rules of what you can wear around a drilling rig, or any facility producing hydrocarbons, are pretty strict, mainly to avoid sparking.

We do wear hard-hats, though.

Ted S., Catskill Mtns., NY, USA

I wish Glenn Greenwald wrote for a paper other than the Guardian.

Sam

a congregation of climate catastrophists and unemployed poets – sorry, “artists and thinkers”

So it's like the Rapture but for Greens?

David

So it’s like the Rapture but for Greens?

Judging by the organisers’ manifesto, it’s very nearly a cult.

D

The rules of what you can wear around a drilling rig, or any facility producing hydrocarbons, are pretty strict, mainly to avoid sparking.

Makes you wonder what you would need to wear to avoid gendering.

Torquil Macneil

"Makes you wonder what you would need to wear to avoid gendering."

Flameproof coveralls is getting into Bananarama territory after all.

Severian

I tried to weave reality with words once. Turns out I was just writing a term paper drunk. I failed the assignment. For which I blame capitalism.

Mr Grumpy

Nothing at all phallic about wind turbines, then?

matt

I find this stuff really hilarious and David's posts and the comments are pure gold. I need to express my gratitude to our host for reading the source material and for your insight and strong stomach. And, while all the comments are great, my appreciation also to those commenters who also also go to the source material to bring back a bit more. You see, reading that stuff in its original context is too much for me. Like alcohol, drinking the strong stuff in its pure and undiluted form takes more strength than I have (or would make me vomit), but a few sips here on this blog, like a pint of lager, is just the ticket. Thank you for presenting necessary diluted snippets of that pure left madness that are so funny. But, it may be giving me bi-polar disorder... on the one hand they're hilarious, on the other hand, a bit of sadness that these people don't know their insane. Actaully, they think they're brilliant.

model_1066

"This weekend the Sustainability Centre in Hampshire will be home to Uncivilisation 2013". In other words, bums, vagrants and derelicts seem to be forming their own union; dumpster diving is an art, panhandling a science, and theft a higher calling. "Work" is a word and activity to be shunned.

model_1066

I don't suspect that George Monbiot would participate in any activity that would get dirt under his nails...too masculine, I'm sure.

Charlie Suet

Isn't it often the left that has this sort of 'macho' problem? Inasmuch as they love the thought of mass employment in heavy industry but find the idea of the service sector a bit effete?

Maz

One of the anti-fracking protesters whose comments were reproduced in the Telegraph was said to be a campaigner against fuel poverty.

JuliaM

"This weekend the Sustainability Centre in Hampshire will be home to Uncivilisation 2013.."

Step this way, free thinkers! What's that? The big, spaceship-shaped thing covered in a sheet? With the sign 'B Ark'? No, no, nothing to concern yourself with...

R. Sherman

Would a comment about Monbiot's affection for sewage related speeches using the phrase "anal retentive" be in poor taste?

dicentra

In poor taste?

Yes.

Devastatingly accurate?

Also yes.

rabbit

I read through some of the comments on "Are You ready to embrace the apocalypse?" What wonderful ideas people have when unencumbered by the facts. I particularly liked:

The truth of the matter is that there are too many people by far and population is increasing rapidly.

If we do not address this ourselves, and it seems very unlikely that we will, then nature will do it for us and the results will be swift and spectacularly ugly. The only thing we don't know is the timing

A five-minute web search would have shown this dolt that population is slowing rapidly in most of the world (the main exceptions being equatorial Africa and southwest Asia), and that we may well see global population begin to fall in our lifetime. The principle reason is almost certainly increasing affluence in the developing nations. The first thing people do when they get a little spare cash is stop having six kids.

bgates

Who wants to make speeches about sewage when you can stride manfully around drilling rigs in a hard hat?

Must I choose just one?

Sandman

I had actually thought that George Monbiot was getting more sensible, for example his mature and considered apology to Lord McAlpine and his repudiation of his previous anti-nuclear views and condemnation of the anti-nuclear lobby.

But this article confirms that he is, in the immortal words of Paul Simon, "still crazy after all these years"

David Gillies

If I were suddenly catapulted to the position of Weltführer, I would find a fair-sized uninhabited island in sub-tropical latitudes, with a good supply of fresh water, plenty of game and edible plants, and dump the entire Uncivilisation mob there. To be extra kind, I'd give them a few handsaws, an axe or two, and a hammer. Then I'd let them get on with it. What's the over/under on how long it would be before they resorted to cannibalism?

pedant2007

I'm puzzled by "testeria". The online OED doesn't list it at all. Monbiot makes it singular; that rules out the meaning suggested by the OED's conjectural derivation of "tester" (canopy over a bed) from Mediaeval Latin "testerium". The second meaning of "tester" (some sort of armour for the head, possibly of a horse) offers a derivation from a presumably singular "testeria" with various cognates in other languages. But where Monbiot got it from, and with what meaning, I have no idea.

AC1

pedant2007
Perhaps Moonbat has been adding words to MSWords dictionary? Words that not only do not exist in the dictionary, they do not exist outside his imagination.

He should pass on this "add to dictionary" skill to his fellow grauniad scribblers.

http://davidthompson.typepad.com/davidthompson/2013/08/her-unspeakable-woes.html

Hal

I'm puzzled by "testeria".

It's one of those examples of Being Elemental and Weaving Reality . . .

cm
I'm puzzled by "testeria".

It's a neologism, analogous to 'hysteria' (from hystera; uterus), except due to possession of testes. That is, (inverting Freud) deranged and/or irrational behaviour due to the subject being male. (See also, testerical.)

Hope that helps!

/Holly

Luke

Who takes this juvenile man seriously? His writing is atrocious. Everything centers around someone's genitalia and he doesn't have an original or interesting, or even mildly amusing thought anywhere. He brings no facts, just emotional mewling and spineless wankery. If I were a leftist, I'd avoid reading him because he's so damn embarrassingly idiotic. I wouldn't want to be associated with such a whimpering ninny.

Rafi

his leftwing activism will no doubt be balanced by his Newsnight colleagues – editor Ian Katz and political editor Allegra Stratton, both former Guardianistas.

Purity!

David

Purity!

It goes without saying that Mr Mason is also a fan of Laurie Penny, which may help explain why she’s so frequently on national television and radio, despite her difficulties with facts and coherent argument. And, like Laurie, Mr Mason is quick to block his Twitter critics on pretty much any pretext. The latest excuse being that someone used the word “bitching.” A moral outrage, obviously.

As you say, he seems to want purity, which is odd when you think about it. After all, Mr Mason, who regards himself as some kind of moral corrective and champion of the oppressed, receives a salary from extortion and unfair leverage. The British public is obliged by law to fund him and his employer, the BBC, whether or not they approve or have any interest in his product. And regardless of whether or not they appreciate his employer’s enormous influence and inherent political bias.

peter horne

Via Bishop Hill this:

http://www.kernelmag.com/features/report/exclusive/4596/i-met-the-fracking-protesters/

"Are you against the extraction of all fossil fuels in the UK?
Prajna: “Do you know, it would be a wonderful start if they just stopped suppressing free energy and starting encouraging it. But they’re not about that.”"

Priceless

David

Priceless

Speechless.

watcher

Extractive industries? It would help enormously if doyens of the left like Monbiot extracted their fingers out of their rears and got on with some real work.

pedant2007

Thanks to cm. Yes, silly me, that's the obvious explanation, which other people seem to have taken for granted. Nothing to do with wisteria, anyway.

John D

The British public is obliged by law to fund him and his employer, the BBC, whether or not they approve or have any interest in his product. And regardless of whether or not they appreciate his employer’s enormous influence and inherent political bias.

"More than 180,000 people – almost 3,500 a week – appeared before the Magistrates Courts, accused of watching television without a valid £145.50 licence. The figure has been steadily rising as TV Licensing, which is responsible for catching and prosecuting non payers, improves its ability to identify those responsible and becomes more determined in its approach. But with Magistrates handling a total of 1.48 million cases last year, it means that around 12 per cent of their workload is now being made up of TV licensing offences. The rise in prosecutions also comes against the backdrop of the BBC executive pay-off scandal, which saw the Corporation pay £60 million in severance deals – enough to pay more than 412,000 licences."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/tvandradio/bbc/10256679/TV-licence-offences-account-for-one-in-ten-UK-court-cases.html

David

Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger defended the paper’s freedom to publish articles about issues affecting middle-class freelance journalists. He said: “The Guardian has a proud tradition of campaigning journalism. However we also have a tradition of catering to readers worried that buying their four-year-old daughter a miniature plastic cooker reinforces patriarchy.”

Chortle.

David

[ Blushes. ]

Patrick Brown

Thought this would be the best place to draw your attention to another Guardian-related wtf. They desperately want to get on their high horse over Miley Cyrus wiggling her arse at the MTV awards - but they can't criticise her for being overly sexual, because that would be "slut shaming". So instead they criticise her for "cultural appropriation", i.e. acting black. So apparently, dancing like a clothed porn star is "black culture" and all right for Rihanna, but not all right for a white girl like Miley. They don't know any better, but she should. Or something?

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/aug/26/miley-cyrus-twerking-not-working
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/aug/27/miley-cyrus-twerking-cultural-appropriation

David

So apparently, dancing like a clothed porn star is “black culture”

Heh. Thanks, Patrick. Just been reading those. But this is the thing about identity politics. Once you buy into it, there’s no way out with your senses intact. It’s just idiocy in all directions.

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