Posted On: Tuesday - January 2nd 2018 3:27PM MST
In Topics:   Treehuggers  Environmental Stupidity
... or should that be stupid sustainability? Sustainability is a perfectly good word, when used to describe a system with inputs and outputs to/from a control volume, given some generation and dissipation possibly too, in engineers' terms. It's just that, because the word has been used by the treehuggers and then the cntrl-left in general for so long as a BS word to throw out there along among the stupidity that they often emanate, it has bad connotations. Sustainability is often just stupidity by association, so it's time to straighten things out.
Let's talk about sustainability, shall we? [The bolding of this word is not sustainable. CUT! IT! OUT! - Ed.].
It probably started with pretty good science, maybe in talking about forests (typical with those treehuggers!). Yeah, this amount is being logged, yet tree growth has this time line, so this type of clear-cut logging is unsustainable, yet this other logging here is sustainable, and so forth. It's a pretty simple concept, in fact, though there may be lots of details to be worked out on the input, output, generation, and dissipation of whatever thing it is one wants to preserve, or keep to a minimum.
Take our garbage (please!) as another example. Recyling has become a big thing. Why? Is it not sustainable to keep burying loads of our used stuff in the ground? That depends. As Peak Stupidity wrote about in Were the Indians Slobs? (spoiler alert - that one guy was...), with a small population on lots of land, and especially with stuff that mother earth likes to reclaim as her own, sure it is. We mightn't even have to bury it. We throw out a lot of plastic and other wierd materials now that takes a long time to really go away and we have lots of more people on the same land. Hence there came the idea of recycling what can be.
I don't really have anything against this recycling idea, if we put in in perspective and understand what sustainability really means. More on that will be coming in a bit.
Are we going to run quickly out of areas to bury our stuff? No, take a look at google earth aerial pics sometimes and I doubt you'll find one landfill without making an effort. The cntrl-left enviros really don't care about that part, as most of them just want to feel good about themselves and know they are a BETTER PERSON than you are. Were they to go talk to the city managers who probably know the real problem, they'd know that it's hard to build a smelly landfill close in to the city. You can build them farther out, but that requires more money to continuously truck the trash much further. Is that sustainable? That depends on how much wasteful crap the city does with the rest of the budget, but I would not have any problem with any of the treehuggers who are in favor of charging for trash based on weight (Oh, no! Free markets! Ewwwww!). Sure, though, let's recycle what PAYS to recycle, as in stuff that the city can get enough money back for to cover what it would have cost to truck it to a far-out landfill (Landfills. FAR OUT, MAN!) That's what I call sustainable.
Instead of letting a free market take care of decisions about what to do with our trash, based on a concept called "pricing", we have these treehuggers pushing for decisions based on their emotions. They feel very good seeing these big cans filled with supposed "recyclables" in some citiies, when lots of it gets sent right to the landfill from the transfer station. See, not many treehuggers work at the transfer station to see this, just regular working people work there. Some of the process doesn't pay off at all, as in, it would still be cheaper to gather up the unsuitable-for-reuse trash normally and bring it straight way out of town to a landfill. That means that the taxpayers are on the hook, of course. Is that sustainable? At some point we're gonna' run out of taxpayers. Yeah, there are indeed bigger boondoggles than the recycling process in some progressive cities, and yes, you need to know how to pick your battles.. The point here is to debunk this whole meme of "sustainability, sustainability".
Just as a quick digression, I have learned more about recycling, scrap metal yards, and the like by viewing videos with a little boy, than I ever picked up during my whole life before. We spent quite a bit of time watching the crushing of cars, which have for a long time been the most recycled products around. It's not just the parts getting re-used (even more so now, via the internet sales) out of the junk yards, but the steel is used, and the glass goes back to it's mother earth as the sand it came from. "Sand to sand, dust to dust".
OK, let me get to the point here. You want sustainable? Even with 330,000,000 people in this country, quite a bit over optimal for my tastes, if it were held at that number, and with improvements by engineers, sure the cycle of refuse could be sustainable. However, due SOLELY to immigration, the population is NOT steady at all. Let's say we have gotten really good with this and recycle a full HALF of all household garbage. Whether you are worried there'll be no more room for landfills or not (it's not the case), then we've cut the problem in half. Depending on how good we get on with getting the stuff to truly go back to the earth (rot, or other "mitigation"), and re-use of the land taken by said landfills, it could get to where we would NEVER EVER have a problem - SUSTAINABILITY NOW! Nope, but once we've got TWICE the population, all that mental and physical effort has come to NIL!. It's as if we had the original population but never recycled.
Every single environmental problem caused by man will by that much worse with an increase in population. That is blindingly obvious. Why won't the environmentalists ever talk about immigration or overpopulation anymore? Oh, yeah, that's right.
Lastly, in keeping with the mission statement of the Peak Stupidity blog, just how sustainable is the high and increasing level of stupidity that exists in 21st century America? After putting a minute's thought into this, I would like to resurrect a concept from the scientific world, debunked by some bright European, mostly British physicists. That is the substance phlogiston, theorized to have a negative weight in order to explain the APPARENT lower mass of the products of combustion vs. the un-burnt fuel. This was before the clever scientists found a good way to measure the gaseous products. So, yeah, the existence of this phlogiston was debunked, but could stupidity be seen in the same way?
Stupidity can be seen as a negative for the quality of life and productivity of society. Additions of this