My niece's idiot fundy husband just posted this on FB
"Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world,
the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world - the
cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what
he has and does - comes not from the Father, but from the world." 1 John
2: 15-16 (NIV)``
Normally I ignore him, but this time I couldn't stand it. My response:
"We've trashed the world, and everything in it. It is pretty clear there is not much love for it."
While I agree that civilization is better than not, the fact remains that there are a heck of a lot of things that we most definitely could have and should have done but have not, or things that we should not have done but done anyway.
The Gulf oil spill is a good example here, where corporate greed coupled with an almost complete lack of government regulation has devastated an entire ecosystem. There was absolutely no need for this oil spill to happen for civilization to continue, and it was, in fact, rather destructive to our own civilization.
So yeah, the environmental destruction we have wrought: not a necessary consequence of civilization. We can and must do a hell of a lot better.
On some level, yes, accidents are inevitable. But they are also a side effect of political corruption and brain-dead economic policy. The fundamental problem is that you have individual actors, by pursuing their own selfish interests, making the economy as a whole worse by destroying the very environment which other businesses (and/or public health) depend upon. We already have the knowledge required to stop a great deal of this destruction. But we aren't making use of it because of a mixture of fundamental Christian beliefs that make it so that many just do not care what we do to this planet, and insane Ayn Rand libertarian beliefs that involve complete denial of reality in pursuit of a free-market utopia.
Accidents do happen, but going all out over an oil spill, in one of the hardest places to drill and if an event like this was ever going to take place it would always be bad. The problem doesn't lie with BP, or Halliburton, or the company that owned the platform, etc, it lies simply with the consumer who demands the things every day that require oil. The cars, plastics, petrochemicals, etc, that we use everyday. It's all very well bemoaning the use of oil, when we ourselves use it. As we sit in our comfortable, warm, heated homes, typing on our keyboards, on our devices, through the modems, and routers, down the infrastructure to the world wide web, and the whole planet, to decry the abuse of the planet when we ourselves are the cause, seems a little shallow.
1) Deep water oil drilling doesn't provide a remotely significant quantity of oil. But it does make some companies rich.
2) There were a number of regulations in place that, were they enforced, would have prevented this particular disaster. They were not enforced, largely as a result of Bush dismantling the regulatory system.
Yup, I never said otherwise. However all operations of that ilk have a degree of risk involved. That was what I was referring to. I do know that the US oil industry is quite cowboy in it's operations. Compare how they work there, with the North Sea, or even West Africa, and it is night and day. Ever since the Piper Alpha disaster, they are regulated to the nth degree out there.
Erm... I think that was what I said. In the North Sea British and Norwegian sectors the regulation is high, "to the nth degree" I think I said, whereas the US is somewhat Cowboy. I said nothing about British or US companies.
@Geoff, that statement was a bit of an over-reaction on my part. Unfortunately it allowed my opponent to respond with a more intelligent sounding interpretation of the passage. But we must accept that we are up against the limits of the earth's carrying capacity for our behaviors. Either we can change our behavior through conscious decision, or the environment will force the change for us.
I to see the works of man as beautiful in many regards. They are indeed the works of the most intelligent beings we know of. I also understand all of civilization to be a natural process. Really, the separation between man and nature is primarily a monotheistic invention, and a mistake, in my opinion.
I like those. But I really don't want to make fun of this person, or start a feud. I was thinking about a response like "Thanks for the clarification. I know a lot of Christians who really don't care about God's creation, except as a springboard to a better place."