Thursday, June 04, 2009

The important thing is that you feel guilty

...there is no precedent for today’s media enlistment in the crusade to promote global warming “awareness.” Concerning this, journalism, which fancies itself skeptical and nonconforming, is neither.

The incessant hectoring by the media-political complex’s “consciousness-raising” campaign has provoked a comic riposte in the form of “The Goode Family,” an animated ABC entertainment program ...
Gerald and Helen Goode, their children and dog Che (when supervised, he is a vegan; when unsupervised, squirrels disappear) live in a college town, where T-shirts and other media instruct (”Meat is murder”), admonish (”Don’t kill wood”) and exhort (”Support our troops … and their opponents”). The college, where Gerald works, gives students tenure. And when Gerald says his department needs money to raise the percentage of minority employees, his boss cheerily replies, “Or we could just fire three white guys. Everybody wins!” Helen shops at the One Earth store, where community shaming enforces social responsibility: “Attention One Earth shoppers, the driver of the SUV is in aisle four. He’s wearing the baseball cap.”

The New York Times television critic disapproves. The show “feels aggressively off-kilter with the current mood, as if it had been incubated in the early to mid-’90s, when it was possible to find global-warming skeptics among even the reasonable and informed.”

That is a perfect (because completely complacent) sample of the grating smugness of the planet-savers, delivered by an entertainment writer: Reasonable dissent is impossible.
...when a Goode child apologizes to his parent for driving too much, and the parent responds, “It’s OK … what’s important is that you feel guilty about it,” the program touches upon an important phenomenon: ecology as psychology.
Green consumption became “positional consumption” that identified the consumer as a member of a moral and intellectual elite.
That's some nice writing. Not much I can add, so go feel guilty! It'll make you feel better.