"You're ... ending up in a ... neoliberal nightmare [where] corporations are running things as far as where the public squares are, and [someone can be] deplatformed from all of them. That's a tremendously awful thing. But, it's not the same thing aa the government telling people what they can and cannot say."

No, it's much worse, because those corporate platforms govern more people's speech than most governments and have zero constitutional norms or democratic accountability.

Anyone who isn't concerned about a handful of profit-first, multinational corporations deciding what most people get to see online isn't paying attention. Concern trolling about "extremists" serves the same function as the moral panic about child abuse materials ("kiddy porn") did in the PR campaign against p2p. Once erected with these rationalizations, the machine always targets the left far more than the right and it's already happening.


The end game is that we're back in the TV era where corporate consensus decides what the majority of the public get to think is true, and only a handful of people know about and have access to the means to do independent fact-checking. Scientists started trying to raise awareness about climate change in the 1970s. Why did the issue only gain mainstream credence since the end of the 1990s, and mainly in the last decade?

> they can make more money selling energy-saving lightbulbs?

Are you telling me the startups selling those suddenly had more discursive power than the 100 corporations (fossil fuel miners etc) who stood to lose from the change of public opinion? How? I think you're reversing cause and effect here.

@strypey it was startups? Interesting. I guess I was born too late to remember exactly what was happening back then, but what I remember is that I learned about these environmental issues from mainstream TV, and later from school. And even at school, the Science textbook didn't push as much an emphasis on environment protection as the foreign language textbooks, especially English one.

Also, before LED lightbulbs became a thing, the CFLs were too yellow-ish and pretty dim, especially for the first several minutes after turning them on. So it was a pain when EU banned sale of regular lightbulbs for consumer purposes.

@strypey so to me it appeared that someone powerful really wanted everyone to use those inferior and more expensive CFL lightbulbs.
I guess I was wrong.

@Wolf480pl again, I think you're reversing cause and effect. Through the 1980s and 90s, activism and science education battled against the fossil fool propaganda pushed through the TV networks. The net tipped the balance against the TV propaganda and accepting anthropogenic climate change became the mainstream position. So some companies saw the writing on the wall and invested in products like CFL that could be marketed as "low carbon".

Not anymore. I'm not postulating anything about causes or effects or why something happened. In the last 2 posts, I only described my experiences from around 2000-2015 (before that I was too young to remember).

I'm entirely open to any reasonable explanation of what actually happened, and why my experiences were as I described.

So, what actually happened?
Why did I learn about environmental issues (not just climate change) from TV and textbooks?
What were these startups that pioneered environment-friendly technology?

@Wolf480pl @strypey
I tend to think that you're both right. In the 50s to the 70s (AFAICT) businesses were pushing really hard to squash environmentalism, that much is clear.

OTOH the climate change politics of the modern era has the distinct smell of astroturf. Nobody's fighting back...

But why? Perhaps knowing people would protest pollution, they created a controlled opposition which conveniently avoids targeting specific polluters?

> Nobody's fighting back...

What about ? The occupation? The grassroots campaigns all around the world against fracking, new coal mines, and offshore oil exploration? Sure, there's astroturf trying to bend climate change responses in profitable (and/or ineffective) ways. But the vast majority of the astroturf is still from "skeptics" funded by Koch et al

Standing Rock had someone fighting back, it was the keystone xl company. It also didn't have celebrities and politicians lining up to show support because actual protests have actual enemies and people who are primarily interested in career advancement don't want enemies.

@cjd I'm really not sure what you're arguing for here. If your claim is that "nobody's fighting back" against climate change activism, that's so far off the mark it's not even wrong. Standing Rock was climate change activism (amongst other things) and as you say, there was plenty of fighting back against that. There are whole corporate-funded conferences dedicated to blowing smoke about climate change being a hoax, or not being a serious problem, or mitigation being too expensive.

@Wolf480pl what kinds of TV shows were teaching you about climate change in this period? Science education programs maybe? I bet it wasn't the news or primetime current affairs shows or documentaries.

@strypey IIRC it was the news and a cartoon called "Raindrop".

@Wolf480pl was the news presenting climate scientists and "skeptics" head-to-head, as if their arguments and evidence were of equivalent quality? There are plenty of ways to cover an issue while subtly misdirecting people. That's not impossible on the net (centralised, algorithmic "social media" recreates those dynamics of TV to some degree), but online it remains a lot quicker and easier to cross-reference across multiple newsrooms, and check primary sources.

@Wolf480pl in the 1990s most propertarians (pro-capitalist "libertarians") and rationalists thought climate change was a socialist hoax or a luddite superstition. The ability the net have them to go right back to the peer-reviewed literature on the subject, without leaving their computers, means these attitudes are now much rarer amongst these groups. TV didn't and couldn't do that.

@strypey @Wolf480pl

I have no problem believing that the earth is getting warmer. Those are simple measurements. What I have a hard time believing is that human production of CO2, a necessary-for-the-life-cycle gas, which composes a tiny fraction of the atmosphere, has anything to do with it. This coupled with the idea of taxing CO2 production, as pretty much the only proposed "fix", makes it clear to me that the purpose is a global tax, not changing the climate.

I've read convincing essays that the unintended consequences of reducing human CO2 output, which can only realistically be done by reducing our energy use, will be worse than the effects of warming.

I've been seeing lots of reports of very low solar activity of late, pointing towards a coming cooling period, which will be hugely worse than any imagined warming.

I've also seen good arguments that solar and wind and all the "green" energy sources cannot possibly ever replace fossil fuels and nuclear energy. Windmills may even be energy negative, costing more energy to make and operate them than you get out.

The best actual solution I've seen, which satisfies the CO2 alarmists AND can provide enough energy to maintain the modern world, is nuclear energy, preferably switched from uranium/plutonium to thorium fuel.

But I'm no climate or energy expert, and neither are 99% of the CO2 alarmists, especially that little girl from Sweden. And this is all from memory. I haven't collected links.
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