It’s summertime, so there’s probably some end-of-the-world disaster movie in theatres right now (are we right?), and we’re guessing that conservative pundit Jonah Goldberg wrote his latest column after getting back from seeing one of them.
It even reads like a movie:
The year is 2109. Celebrations continue as mankind’s heroic, century-long, quintillion-dollar effort to lower the global mean temperature by 1 degree has paid off: It’s just as hot as it was in 2009. Few can contain their jubilation.
But even as the carbon-neutral champagne corks fly, the sky darkens. A projectile of a different kind is coming our way. An asteroid streaks across the skies, giving the media just enough time to spread the word. The New York Times, now beamed directly into subscribers’ brains via digital-neural networks, fulfils ancient prophecy and warns that women and minorities will be hardest hit by the incoming object.
But there’s little we can do. The space flotsam smashes into the solar energy farm formerly known as Arizona. The space rock, 100 meters in diameter, hits at a velocity of 50,000 mph, with the force of thousands of nuclear warheads. Untold millions die. Dust and debris blot out the sun and chill the planet for years to come. Crops fail, billions starve. The heat of impact releases torrents of nitrous and nitric acid rain.
Bummer, dude! It’s just too bad Bruce Willis and Will Smith aren’t around to save us in his column.
Just about the only part of his column that’s not movie-like is the thud title: “Forget global warming, there’s a space rock with our name on it.”
For one thing, that’s way too long. We think “Space Rock” would be better. And for another thing, it exposes Goldberg to the claim that his column is just “denialist” pap that’s so easy to tune out. Look, asteroids might be a problem, but what’s that got to do with forgetting global warming? Can’t we focus on more than one thing at a time?
If Goldberg wants to attack climate change and the proposed solution, that’s fine. But Jerry Bruckheimer-infused fantasies aren’t reason enough to do a major policy switch.
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