Monday, December 7, 2009

Shooting at Gary Oldman

Who here remembers going to see Lost in Space?

Don't you dare lie. Don't pretend that you had anything better to do in 1998 than go see Joey shoot some intergalactic crabs. It was a riot; a feast of blunt science fiction metaphors that required that Gary Oldman turn into a space mutant.

Anyway, it's easy to forget that the point of all that was the premise that Earth was dying from pollution and only William Hurt and a poindexter robot could save us.

The Board isn't sure if Hurt, whose past roles include a drug dealer, impotent Vietnam veteran and radio psychologist - all in The Big Chill - will be in Copenhagen this week.

Maybe he should go and add some sardonic commentary on the proceedings. Because Lord knows its going to be an otherwise uneventful 14 days in bacon country.

Yes, climate change is our silent pariah. Yes, it is the marriage of our collective sins that will kill us all - except for John Cusack, the smug fecker - in 2012.

But will there really be a new carbon emissions deal? Will Copenhagen do anything to dispel the notion that nothing will ever be done to tackle climate change until it's too late?

Today, 56 newspapers in 45 countries published a joint editorial calling for the UN climate change summit to become an era- defining moment; the time and place when the hands of power joined together to mend the ways of the world. It may or may not transpire as such.

But what is most galling are the recent poll figures in a Nielsen/Oxford University survey of 27,000 internet users in 54 countries which found that the number of people "very concerned" by climate change had fallen from 41 to 37 per cent since 2007. In the US, this number has fallen further, from 34 to 25 per cent.

How can anyone, least of all the editors of these 56 newspapers, expect world leaders to press for reform in how they burn fuel if their citizens do not force them?

Why do we always wait to react to something, rather than act first and stave off the worse effects?

Why do many Americans continue to deny that climate change is taking place, even as the Louisiana bayou disappears into the sea at a rate of miles every month?

Until the tremendous urgency of the climate issue enters the mind of every man, woman and child in the 192 countries that will take part in the Copenhagen debate, debates are all we will be left with.

Call me a sceptic, but The Board will be oiling his crab gun and begging John Cusack for a spot on his Cessna sooner rather than later.

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