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Author Topic: Give up AC to save future generations?  (Read 3047 times)

Offline coberst

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« on: 12/12/2008 11:28:28 »
Give up AC to save future generations?

I am inclined to think that each human generation must consider itself as the steward of the earth and therefore must make available to the succeeding generations an inheritance undiminished to that received.

In this context what does "careful and responsible management" mean? I would say that there are two things that must be begun to make the whole process feasible. The first is that the public must be convinced that it is a responsible caretaker and not an owner and secondly the public must be provided with an acceptable standard whereby it can judge how each major issue affects the accomplishment of the overall task. This is an ongoing forever responsibility for every nation but for the purpose of discussion I am going to speak about it as localized to the US.

Selfishness and greed are fundamental components of human nature. How does a nation cause its people to temper this nature when the payoff goes not to the generation presently in charge but to generations yet to come in the very distant future? Generations too far removed to be encompassed by the evolved biological impulse to care for ones kin.

How is it possible to cause a man or woman to have the same concern for a generation five times removed as that man or woman has for their own progeny? I suspect it is not possible, but it does seem to me to be necessary to accomplish the task of stewardship.

Would it be possible to cause the American people to reject completely the use of air-conditioning so that generations five times removed could survive? Is it possible to create in a person a rational response strong enough to overcome the culturally developed nature of greed and selfishness?  The motivation force must be instinctually based, i.e. based upon moral instinct honed through reason in the form of a science of morality.

I claim that a compelling sense of stewardship must come through a comprehension of the science of morality (yet to be developed).



 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« Reply #1 on: 12/12/2008 12:27:33 »
I agree with everything you have written.

I think some serious social engineering would need to be undertaken to achieve the required change in mindset.
 

Offline graham.d

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« Reply #2 on: 12/12/2008 16:58:35 »
I am glad you mean Air-Conditioning. When I first looked I thought you had something against our electricity supply systems :-)

It is fine for people in the UK to say that. If you happen to live in Texas, Arizona or even New York on a hot, humid summer day, you may think otherwise.
 

Offline Don_1

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« Reply #3 on: 12/12/2008 17:28:35 »
While I do not disagree with you, coberst, I think you are asking for something which we could never get worldwide agreement on. Man is destined to destroy his own habitat. Ask a multimillionaire if he/she cares about there future offspring and they will say 'Yes', but what they mean is 'Not if I have to give up my private jet, limosines, yatch, mansions and all else which makes my life luxurious.

When the boss of Lehman Bros was questioned about his claim to lack of sleep since the collapse of the company, he suddenly had little to say when the matter of his 3 mansions and $640m was brought up. When the bosses of Ford, GM & Chrysler went cap in hand to the US government for help to keep the companies afloat, they too seemed to blank out the question about them coming to Washington by private jet.

We cannot get individuals to act responsibly, we cannot get national agreement by governments to act responsibly, what chance of getting the whole world to do so?
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« Reply #4 on: 12/12/2008 17:39:31 »
Quote
When the bosses of Ford, GM & Chrysler went cap in hand to the US government for help to keep the companies afloat, they too seemed to blank out the question about them coming to Washington by private jet.

They were asked if they would sell their private company jets right there & then and get a commercial flight home. They all declined.
 

Offline coberst

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« Reply #5 on: 12/12/2008 18:17:17 »
I agree with everything you have written.

I think some serious social engineering would need to be undertaken to achieve the required change in mindset.

I think that we have for such a long period been under the false impression that only religion can provide moral council that we are unlikely to seriously consider this matter of a science for morality immediately.  Our adult population must become more intellectually sophisticated for this to happen.  We are still in a Sunday-school sort of sophistication toward this matter.
 

Offline coberst

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« Reply #6 on: 12/12/2008 18:18:11 »
I am glad you mean Air-Conditioning. When I first looked I thought you had something against our electricity supply systems :-)

It is fine for people in the UK to say that. If you happen to live in Texas, Arizona or even New York on a hot, humid summer day, you may think otherwise.

AC was just one example of what sacrifices that must be considered by a person who seeks to act in a moral fashion about what we owe to future generations.
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« Reply #7 on: 12/12/2008 18:28:04 »
I agree with everything you have written.

I think some serious social engineering would need to be undertaken to achieve the required change in mindset.

I think that we have for such a long period been under the false impression that only religion can provide moral council that we are unlikely to seriously consider this matter of a science for morality immediately.  Our adult population must become more intellectually sophisticated for this to happen.  We are still in a Sunday-school sort of sophistication toward this matter.

I agree. The situation is not helped by religion having a say every time a moral question raises its head.
 

Offline graham.d

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« Reply #8 on: 14/12/2008 13:51:18 »
Whilst I agree with the concept of responsibility, and note the comments about religion here, it seems that there is a reaction to solving problems by wearing a hair-shirt. It is essential that problems, such as climate change, are analysed so that people can be asked to make appropriate sacrifices where these make sense, and not just random gestures that can make a few individuals feel good but which make little overall progress. And I do not intend this comment to be an excuse for doing nothing either.

One of the difficulties about trying to get climate change, and potential means of mitigating its effect accepted, is that it has become a political issue rather than a scientific one. The back to nature approach, and it is "all the fault of capitalism", is simply not going to work as a means of solving this. It just alienates a large section of the world, who are probably the ones that have to be convinced.
 

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Give up AC to save future generations?
« Reply #8 on: 14/12/2008 13:51:18 »

 

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