June 15, 2009 | Ronda Jambe

We are the Illuminati

Or at least I think I am. Someone on the ABC was discussing them, and it sparked my curiosity, but I only caught bits at the end. So I Googled it. After discarding options like ‘the Illuminati on E-Bay’ , ‘Illuminati games’ and go-nowhere chats, I was not much wiser and lost interest. Still, I like the term, and in what must be a classic early 21c approach, I redefined it for my own purposes. Isn’t that the way the world works? It helped that we’d watched the Luminous display on the Sydney Uproar House from the roof of a hotel in the Rocks Saturday night. I saw the light.
opera house illumined.jpg
So here we are, totally Illumined, dear reader. It also helped that the next morning we found ourselves in intense dialogue with old friends about CO2 emissions. Although one of these old pals now seems to be in cahoots with the coal industry, we were able to agree on the following:
a) there is a CO2 problem for the global climate, Senator Fielding notwithstanding. (Can someone please give him an Idiot’s Guide to the Scientific Method?)
b) a projected peak for our species of 9 billion is probably about two times surplus to requirements, and
c) the government’s proposals for the CPRS are not going to work, if diminishing Australia’s emissions is the goal.
This friend also noted that nuclear isn’t the long term answer, as uranium is hardly a renewable energy source. In fact, global supplies of uranium will only last about 60 years at current rates of nuclear energy production. If you ramp it up, even less. He also doesn’t think we should stop exporting our better grades of coal, as the Chinese coal is much dirtier. And there the illumination faded, as we couldn’t work out what path would work.
But Paul Gilding contributed to the conversation, via Background Briefing. He says sell the coal to all takers, but put a condition on it: no emissions to result from the burning. That would allow both cake and eating, and create a large industry for carbon sequestration. Is this the answer? A carbon tax seems to be the preferred approach by green groups and The Economist. Clearly, once the dirtier emissions are fully taxed (not subsided by giveaways, as the coal lobby insists) then renewables and efficiency come to the fore, where they should be.
Gilding also said not to worry about changing the endless growth paradigm, as it will fade anyway. The end of abundant, cheap oil will do that. But another Illuminated friend has looked at the sustainable economy models and says that taking away the entrepreneurial/get rich motives will leave us stagnating. This is a variation on the Camille Paglia ‘the world needs testosterone to progress’ hypothesis.
But I’m female, affluent and, according to my long-suffering partner, moderately eristic. Gilding also noted that we have to realise we are the people who need to change, not some abtract malevolent coal-loving bad guys. Sometimes the most important things are those we perceive weakly, like shadows in a cave. More light needed.
shadows Sydney.jpg

Posted by Ronda Jambe at 9:45 am | Comments (2) |
Filed under: General


  1. What a stupid story. Guess what – I won’t be back to this website, coz who wants to read mindless trivial comments that imply various warped ideologies are correct. For example – Questioning and critique (AKA Fielding’s questions) is a vital part of science, but completely absent from Global warming propaganda. Why has the earth cooled for a decade despite higher C02? Anyone who thinks oil supply controls population growth, is too stupid to bother reading ever again… Only one comment was accurate, You definately need to change, to find the light. Thing is you’ll have to stop looking up your rectum, that’s not where the light comes from, despite what your silly ideologies and inflated self opinion tells you and your type.

    Comment by Phil — June 22, 2009 @ 11:58 am

  2. Let me guess, you are male and under 40. You’re supposed to argue the facts, not the woman. I didn’t say oil controls population, but quoted Gilding saying that the end of cheap oil will put an end to the growth economy mantra.
    By the way, today’s Canberra Times has an article saying that Fielding, as an engineer, should know the science of climate change is accurate, and that anyone can see that while temps can drop over a decade, especially if a particularly warm year is chosen for the start, over the past 100 years there has been a definite upward trend.
    Really too bad if you don’t like my style, but I am quite serious and very well informed. If the affluent and educated don’t act, we are all in trouble. If that’s arrogant, so be it.

    Comment by ronda jambe — June 22, 2009 @ 4:23 pm

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