Alarming News: I like Morgan Freeberg. A lot.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: We were following a trackback and thinking "hmmm... this is a bloody excellent post!", and then we realized that it was just part III of, well, three...Damn. I wish I'd written those.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: ...I just remembered that I found a new blog a short while ago, House of Eratosthenes, that I really like. I like his common sense approach and his curiosity when it comes to why people believe what they believe rather than just what they believe.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is an intriguing guy...[he] asks great questions and answers others with style, flair, reason and wit. On the blogroll he goes. Make him a part of your regular blogospheric reading. I certainly will.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is brilliant.
Common Sense Junction: Misha @ Anti-Idiotarian never ceases to amaze me. He keeps finding other good blogs. I went over to A.I. this morning for my daily Misha fix and he had found this guy named Morgan Freeberg in Fair Oaks, California, that has a blog, House of Eratosthenes. Freeberg says its "The Blog That Nobody Reads" but it may now become the blog that everybody reads.
Jaded Haven: Good God, Morgan, you cover a topic from front to back with a screwy thoroughness I find mind boggling. I'm in awe of your thought proccesses, my friend, you're an exceptional talent. You start by throwing in the kitchen sink, tie in someone's syphilitic uncle, bend around a rip tide of brilliance and bring it all home in a neat, diamond dripping package of an exceptionally readable moment of damn fine wordsmithing. I love reading you.
Mein Blogovault: Make "the Blog that No One Reads" one of your daily reads.
Philmon: When Morgan meanders, stick with him - he's got a point and it'll be worth it in the end. He's not a hit-and-run snarky quip kind of guy. The pieces all fall into place like tumblers in a lock and bang! He's opened a cognative door for you.
Rightlinx: Morgan at House of Eratosthenes is one of the best writers out there. I read him nearly every day because he manages to provide an interesting perspective, even though I don't always agree.
Poetic Justice: Cletus! Ah gots a laiv one fer yew...
Here comes the rule. It’s a rule we all understand deep within already, it’s just that nobody says it out loud. It’s coming; here it comes. Are you ready?
Hope you’re sitting down. Here it is…
…move your mouse over the picture to the left. See the little yellow box that pops up after a second or two (if you’re using IE), it’s got a word in it. It’s the same word as the word in the red circle.
It’s all about that.
Let me repeat that…
…it’s all about that. This Earth Hour thing tonight, that’s a perfect example. Awareness.
Attention. Getting attention.
Nobody who claims to be doing environmentally-conscious things anymore…or environmentally-sound things anymore…or environmentally-sensitive things…does anything to help the environment. If some good is done for the environment, it’s just a side effect. We’re just showing off for each other, and that’s all we’re doing, that’s all it’s about. We get attention from each other by going through the motions of helping the environment, which we don’t really expect to do.
I think we should face facts about this. Because hey, if you want to help the environment without getting any “strokes” for it, there are hundreds of ways, starting with trading in your big car for a smaller one. Nobody ever approaches anyone about driving a smaller car anymore though. Here and there a couple might decide to do that, to help the household expenses come out a bit by bringing down the gas bill.
But nobody approaches anybody about driving a smaller car — compared with — the trendy things. You know what those are. Changing your light bulbs. Drink out of an Eco Cup. Participate in “Earth Hour.”
While Earth Hour will see South-East Queenslanders flicking their switches for just one hour from 8pm-9pm, the WWF hopes residents and businesses will use Earth Hour as a catalyst for adopting other day-to-day energy-saving practices to cut their individual greenhouse emissions and help tackle climate change. [emphasis mine]
Another Aussie has a different way of putting it:
Colliers International Chief Executive John Kenny has announced the company will be throwing its full support behind Earth Hour, using the event as a catalyst to drive significant ongoing change in the actions of Australia’s landlords, tenants and residents to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
“We have been advocates for drastic changes in the approach to environmental sustainability in the property industry for some time,” Mr Kenny said.
“Earth Hour is a fantastic opportunity to really drive the message home,” Mr Kenny said.
How much energy does Earth Hour save the world tonight? How much carbon does it prevent from being spewed? The truth is that nobody knows; nobody cares. Remember the Morgan Rule. It’s about the message. It is all about the message.
Doing something to help the environment when nobody knows you’re doing it? Don’t.
Doing something that looks like it might help the environment, that actually doesn’t, but makes an impression on lots and lots of people? Dynamite!
In other words, it’s a social custom. Nothing more.
Consider a hypothetical in which we have “staggered Earth Hours,” with each household declaring an hour (Zulu time) in the month of April in which that house’s lights will dim. All at different times. My hour is 0900GMT on the 19th, your hour is 1500GMT on the 7th. We all live up to our pledges and the carbon-hour is saved. Success? NO! The Morgan Rule…it’s all about the union. The coming together. We all went off in different directions, and so the attention-whoring did not commence. On the other hand, consider a city that advertises the onset of the single, solid, unified Earth-Hour…television advertisements, radio spots, snippets ritually tossed out by high-profile officials to show it’s on their minds. And then at the golden hour someone forgets to flip the switch! Oopsie. This time…the carbon-hour is not saved. We went ahead and spewed.
Smashing success. It should be a failure, but it isn’t. The attention was gotten. Even though the carbon flowed.
Even better, consider that Eco-Cup mentioned above. It is environmentally friendly, because the plastic liner on the inside is made with cornstarch. Not the cup itself. The liner that keeps the coffee from getting in the cardboard. Just microns thick. You can drink half a dozen cups of Joe out of these things all year long, and thousands of you would have a barely significant effect on the landfills. It isn’t about the effect. Look at the design…just look at it. If it was about cause-and-effect, this thing would be a dull ugly off-white eggshell thing. It isn’t. It’s a distinctive green-and-brown design you can recognize instantly from across a crowded room.
If it wasn’t that, it would be a failure. A failure…at the thing it is really supposed to do. Which is to get attention.
And that’s fine with me. But I think it would be good for the sanity of all of us, if we drop the pretenses and just admit it’s about calling attention to ourselves. It isn’t about saving the environment, or anything in it.
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