sitting on the edge of the sandbox, biting my tongue

October 2, 2010

Some Bubbles Don’t Burst

Filed under: environmentalism — Tags: , , , , , — edge of the sandbox @ 4:48 am

This rant is brought to you courtesy of a late September heat wave, that had me hiding indoors both to avoid the heat and sanctimony on the account of global warming, the latter emanating from local mommies.

I’m still waiting for the green bubble to burst.  After all, Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger promised it would.  I especially like how they highlighted the uncool personification of contemporary environmentalism:

…suburban matrons [who] proudly clutched copies of Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food and came to see the purchase of each $4 heirloom tomato at the farmer’s market as an act of virtue.

As you can see I have an axe to grind.  But just when you think they are hopelessly behind the times, eco-fascists present us with their their misanthropic best.  They still have it, the bastards!  So is environmentalism kaput?

Are the entrenched Big Green interests about to let the green bubble burst?  And what about the consumers of green propaganda, can they possibly let go of their devotions?  I’m asking too many questions.

Did you know that mothers are more environmentally conscious then college students?  Well, at least we recycle more.

A college kid may fulfill her Tree-hugging 101 requirements, but she’s poor and apathetic.  Anyhow, she has better things to do with her time.  When she leaves the campus, she earns decent money and rises to a position of relative importance.  But next thing you know she has a child, and she finds herself locked up in her hip little condo.  One on one with the baby.  All day long.  She approaches motherhood the same way she approached her job — she’s a thinking mom — she does research, she wants to be relevant, she expects to be acknowledged.  She can’t just kinda feed the baby, and kinda play with the baby, and then kinda leave the baby alone.  Every aspect of mothering has to have a larger meaning.  Plus, she yearns for an adult conversation.  Most of all she needs a soapbox.

Environmentalism provides this mother with an opportunity to apply herself.  She gets to learn about the human interaction with nature, and so she’s participating in a conversation more advanced then “no pulling tail!!!/bird, brown bird, brown bird flying/no pushing brother!!!/Choo-choooo!!!”. She feels like a good mommie because she cares about the Earth, and by extension about the future of her offspring.  She also gets to teach her kid to save the planet.  As a bonus she’s absolved of guilt that ensures from buying expensive items at the neighborhood boutique.  She might be paying the green premium, but it’s for environmentally correct products.

Oh, but it comes at a price.  She has to sort out her garbage, use ineffective cleaning products and she’s at loss when her little one starts harassing her about the environment.  Most importantly she has to use cloth diapers.  They are messy and diaper service is expensive, but cloth diapers remain the badge of honor of any thinking mom.

Logically the cloth diaper phenomena makes little if any sense.  Plastic diapers (I love saying it: We use plastic diapers!) take up landfill space, but cloth has to be washed and dried which requires energy and water.  A recent British government study found that plastic diapers have a slightly smaller carbon footprint, and recommended washing full load of cloth, in warm water and drying them out in outside on a line.  That’s unsanitary.  There is shit in diapers, and  you are going to let that shit sit somewhere in your house until you have a full load to wash.  Warm water doesn’t kill the bacteria; it creates a perfect environment for them in which to multiply.

So why do Bay Area mothers selflessly insist on using cloth?  To prove their devotion, that’s why!  And to get themselves irreversibly emotionally entangled in the church of Gaia.  Because after several years of storing and washing baby’s shit, and ignoring every study that tells them that they are being ridiculous, Bay Are mothers are not about to admit that they were had.

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1 Comment »

  1. […] wrote before that environmentalist Bay Area mothers will probably find it difficult to give up their beliefs.  What about their kids?  This generation is brought up in the Church of  Global Warming […]

    Pingback by Gaia Is a Baby-Eating Goddess « sitting on the edge of the sandbox, biting my tongue — April 20, 2011 @ 10:23 pm


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