One hundred and ninety-nine years ago in June, snow fell on Albany New York. Six months earlier, Central Italy experienced the worst snowstorms on record. The snow was red and yellow.
Between the end of 1815 and the summer of 1816 the weather in Western Europe and North Eastern America oscillated between heat and extreme cold. Continuous rain in Europe and frosts and snow in America reduced both sides of the Atlantic to agricultural wastelands. By the end of 1816, thousands were starving.
In April 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte had been on the lam for three months and was back in Paris to pick up where he had left off. Hundreds of thousands of men and boys had died thus far promoting his version of political correctness, now he would militarize the country once again to finish the job. Two months later he was finally confronted by the British, Prussian and Belgian forces at aptly named Waterloo. Unusually intense rain for two days straight had turned the battlefield into a quagmire and the conflict – that historians suggest may otherwise have gone in Napoleon’s favor – found him instead, up to his ass in mud, defeated and stuck back in jail once and for all. Weather – and Wellington boots – had combined to defeat one of history’s more prolific consumers of human beings.
After decades of conflict, Europe was finally opened up for tourism again. By 1816, The Grand Tour was in full swing, with the British well-to-do and hippies of their day, able at last to indulge their finer tastes for history and culture. By now, the rain was almost a permanent condition: day after day, month after month and when it wasn’t raining there was incongruous ice and snow – sometimes in reds and yellows and flesh colors. Tourism was awash. Boats floated over the tops of bridges and crops rotted under water. In an attempt to at least feed their livestock, farmers rowed out to try and harvest the fodder.
Confined to their house on the edge of Lake Geneva, the touring Shelleys and their friend Lord Byron spent the downpour reading together and inventing stories – in keeping with conditions outside – ghost stories and tales of gloom and horror. They competed with each other to invent ones of their own and out of the thunder and lightning came Frankenstein, Mary Shelley’s towering metaphysical masterpiece: a book written by an 18 year-old that would give life to a truly novel, enduring fictional genre.
Back home in England, fellow ‘Romantic’ Joseph Turner, “The Painter of Light”, was also confronting the weather. Pink, orange and yellow skies began to appear in his images, reflecting the actual skies above. Burning sunsets, blanketing rain and columns of steam and cloud now characterized his landscapes, raising his art to a level of elemental abstraction that would transform landscape painting – all painting – forever.
Across the Atlantic, the Eastern United States struggled with its own climactic mayhem: not a surfeit of water, but a lack of it: one month of drought followed another. There was snow in June and September in New York and Massachusetts, with oscillating extremes of heat and cold in between. It was described as the “Year Without Summer” and just as they had in Europe, crops and harvest were devastated and thousands faced famine.
Eighty percent of Americans depended on the crops and food they produced and in the face of ultimate disaster, thousands moved west to find better prospects. Europeans in turn immigrated to America and joined the exodus. There was plenty of room: to fund his planned invasion of England, Napoleon had doubled the size of the United States by agreeing to the Louisiana Purchase. Investors and speculators quickly handed out money to encourage relocation and just as it would in the twenty first century, risky lending and desperate borrowing in the context of economic uncertainty led to the foreclosing of mortgages, recalling of loans and collapse of banks. In 1819, the US experienced the first financial crash in its history.
Among those swept up in the chaos was a young Frenchman, whose father had hustled him out of France to save him from military impressment. If not for Napoleon’s insatiable appetite for cannon fodder, America might never have heard of him.
John James Audubon had painted nature since he was a teenager and when he arrived in the new world, he determined to produce the definitive record of its birdlife. With a new family to support, he tried small business ventures selling ‘dry goods’ and supplies to the migrating pioneers to help fund his project, but the economic vicissitudes ultimately left him penniless. Eventually he found work aboard flatboats doing the very thing he did best: shoot birds … and paint them. At a time when Americans ate just about anything that moved, he supplied food for the passengers by hunting the wildlife up and down the riverbanks from Pittsburg to the (now American) city of New Orleans… and increased his portfolio in the process. Two years later he was in England with a publisher and the rest is history. A French draft dodger, swept along by the tumultuous currents of circumstance, had raised the bar for wildlife painting to a height no one would surpass.
The cause of the climactic upheaval was a single event – like Napoleon Bonaparte, a violent, unpredictable force of energy that had erupted into the world without warning. Mt. Tambora, an obscure volcano, on a remote island, in faraway Indonesia had exploded with greater force than any that preceded it. Spewing ash and chemicals into the stratosphere, it had enveloped the planet in an aerosol cloud of sulphuric acid that reflected back sunlight and plunged the surface into a gloom of fogs, rains and freezing temperatures. The rainy seasons in India and China were also disrupted, leading to crop failures, flooding and starvation. As it had in Europe, disease followed in the wake of hunger with Cholera and Typhus killing many more. A single unpredictable climactic event caused social, political and economic upheaval that would be felt for decades.
The causal links between these events is incontestable but the connections involve improbable convolutions of circumstance that were far too discreet to be predicted. These in turn were the result of the unforeseeable sequence of causes and effects that had preceded them. A “whiff of grapeshot” had launched Napoleon’s career and it had resulted in the United States doubling in size; from that came Manifest Destiny and America’s position in the world today. Mary Shelley’s book changed the perception of women’s creative power and Audubon’s cataloguing of American wildlife inspired environmental and ecological awareness; singular events that changed everything in effect, each – in that instance – contingent upon a singular unpredictable change in climate.
Weather, like war, compels the technological dynamic and increases our cognitive range of self. Neither is predictable with respect to its moments of origin, duration, magnitude of destruction or subsequent effects. Neither is there a measurable, quantitative correlation between the adverse and beneficial nature of those effects. Constant unpredictable change is the intractable condition of life. “Change”, the wonderfully vacuous and redundant slogan of past years seems in line with that idea – except when it comes to the weather.
The outrageous sunsets of Los Angeles, are said to be caused by the vast number of Hollywood producers, actors and actresses blowing hot air up each other’s asses all day. A similar idea may account for forest fires, hurricanes and disappearing polar bears: an equally large number of climate alarmists and social activists appears to be doing the same thing. The reason for their alarm (understandably) is that the air is apparently getting hotter.
The implications of this, we are told, are melting ice caps, rising sea levels, increased ocean acidity, inundation of cities, loss of wildlife, destruction of the environment and conceivably the end of civilization as we know it… but it can be averted. Carbon emissions – primarily from the burning of fossil fuels – are the reason for this apocalyptic certainty, and a halt to the process will return us to sanity and rescue us from the brink of disaster.
These conclusions have not been arrived at through the normal processes of science: the dialectic of thesis, antithesis and synthesis has been overridden. ‘Thesis’ has been disproportionately funded and promoted, while contrary viewpoints have been dismissed and vilified, its proponents even being expelled from the process of research altogether. Without the equal consideration of alternatives, no reasonable synthesis is possible.
Modern computer technology can amass volumes of statistics, but given that the theoretical models of the “97% of Climate scientists” cannot present an unequivocal consensus of what has already happened in the past, claims for predicting effects decades into the future are questionable to say the least. Wars can also be reduced to statistics, but predicting the details of future wars based on theoretical models would be preposterous. To then propose a Correct means for countering these hypothetical effects is doubly questionable – particularly since this same Climate Science states categorically that they cannot be questioned.
We are dependent on oil. In addition to fuelling the private jets of celebrities traveling the world to denounce it, it is used for just about every other item in the home. A barrel of 42 gallons produces slightly less than 20 gallons of gasoline, the rest is required for such things as –aspirin, toothpaste, antiseptics, hair dyes, nail polish, perfumes, contact lenses, vitamin capsules, pantyhose, shower curtains, heart valves, deodorant, lipstick, shoes, crayons, balloons, sunglasses, toilet seats, and guitar strings – to name but a very few. An alternative source for producing most of these items has not yet been found, nor the means for transporting them. Airplanes, trucks and cargo ships cannot be powered by windmills. Neither can school buses or ambulances. Apparently a system has to be devised whereby oil is rationed, allowing only for essential purposes. The question then becomes, who decides what is essential? And to whom?
A worldwide banning of fossil fuel energy (which has nothing to do with fossils) increases the cost of energy, particularly for developing countries that are prevented from using their own resources for their own needs. They must struggle instead with expensive, less efficient methods dictated by the ‘superior insight’ of those who rose to their own levels of comfort and prosperity through precisely the means they are preventing them from using. For all their pretensions of ‘sharing the wealth’ they would not have other cultures share their own.
‘Banning’ is the corner stone of Correctness. It is not about cause and effect but fault and accountability, a non-scientific, quasi-religious viewpoint that blames the capricious unruliness of circumstance on the behavior of other human beings. In this scenario, every idea perceived as contrary must be confronted and removed – if necessary, by force. Correctness has always been big on fire. Setting fire to books, setting fire to people, setting fire to flags, setting fire to colleges – and having scientists, professors and writers with opposing points of view summarily… fired. In light of that, the fear that others may ostensibly be trying to set fire to them makes perfect sense.
Heat is not a constant tone but a series of oscillating, unequal peaks and valleys, encapsulated in turn within greater configurations. The dialogue between Earth and Sun is a 4-billion year-old intimacy impervious and indifferent to human striving: two vast incomprehensible entities communicating in a language of energies too subtle and complex to formulate, much less predict in its consequences. It was ongoing long before we got here, it will continue long after we are gone.
Climate Science and the idea that a Correct method can be discerned for determining ‘change for the better’ is not about controlling weather but controlling people. It is part of a globalist agenda posing as universal free thought that seeks to eradicate all contrary opinion – and prevent free thought. ”No more debate” is the defining statement of religio-political Controlling ideology.
An entirely unforeseeable force of energy has now erupted into the world – without warning – and the political climate has changed; for “better or worse” a change that will be felt for decades to come. For the better, Climate Science can now be subjected to measured, dialectical scrutiny and the disingenuous AlGorythm brought to account. Beyond that there is no telling.
Human excess is always subject to revision, but predicting specific effects from questionable causes – that cannot be questioned – is dogmatic speculative fiction. To compromise the lives of millions in order to promote speculation, is cultural elitism – dressed as always in good intention. The road to Hell is paved with good intention; it doesn’t get hotter than that.
MALCOLM MC NEILL