August 15, 2007

Being green is SO confusing

Morals make me nervous. Not mine, but other people's. It doesn't help that I'm irreligious. Take the Pope. Am I the only one who gets antsy when he sees a German guy on a balcony addressing a crowd of 50,000?
Of course, the largely agnostic English don't pay attention to a man in a funny hat (unless he's Gandalf).
I think there is a large number of people in this country who are inclined to follow any half-baked belief outside of religion.
The environment, for example. Generally speaking, looking after the planet is regarded as a good thing. But I don't see challenges to the plethora of green claims on ads, which fall somewhere between afterthought and bandwagon-jumping. No, someone says they're green and we just go along with it.
Look at this bullshit about carbon offsetting. It's the 2007 equivalent of buying indulgences off the medievel Church to offset sins that you intend to commit. Here are a dozen groats, Father, now excuse me while I shag my sister.
Being green is the new moral relativism, and two news stories this week illustrate my point.
First, we have The Times with a superb claim that walking does more than driving to cause global warming. "Food production is now so energy-intensive that more carbon is emitted providing a person with enough calories to walk to the shops than a car would emit over the same distance. The climate could benefit if people avoided exercise, ate less and became couch potatoes."
I just love that. In one short paragraph, some propellerhead has undermined one of the commandments that prop up green dogma.
And how about this: Ecover, a much respected manufacturer of green household cleaning products, has lost its Vegan Society accreditation because it uses water fleas to test the effects of detergents on aquatic life! Maybe Ecover should use chemical testing instead. Oh, wait...
But frankly, who gives a shit what the Vegan Society thinks. Ecover have gone out of their way to create something useful and green-friendy that'll help the planet. This tofu-flavoured hiccup won't harm the brand.


Charles Frith said...

The Times. Owned by Rupert Murdoch and thus close to evil would never factor in the human labour needed to produce the car in the first place. Or indeed the traffic wardens(who walk for a living) or the people in petrol stations or the MOT stations or whatever it takes for them to prove that Global warming isn't happening. They'd just rather risk maintaining a selfish lifestyle than take responsibility for passing on something decent for future generations.

I wouldn't wipe my bum with The Times. I used to buy the Sunday Times in about '91. It was a semi serious paper then.

Hope you don't mind me letting rip on your blog :(

Rob Mortimer said...

Thanks Charles.

If Ecover didnt test the chemicals and they ended up killing a whole river; the first cry would be "Whyyy didnt they test it?!!"

I hate faux-green. But I hate people trying to justify laziness. Funnily enough we eat regardless of whether we walk. Thats just lazy journalism of the kind I expect from Murdoch owned toilet paper.

FishNChimps said...

There's nothing wrong with a good rant. Rumour has it that Murdoch has built himself a space ark. He doesn't give a shit about the planet cos he's going to leave it anyway (around the time the monkeys take over).

Toad said...

Man alive, you guys should see how the whole green thing plays out over here.

Every big company's being advised by some consultant who's realized there's green to be made in Green, and they're all putting forth some sort of "we love the earth" BS.

Now no one's really buying a word of it, but you know it's hard to be the one who speaks up against that sort of stuff.

And maybe, just maybe, it'll make the kids actually start thinking that being green is a given and not just a trend.

green_vixen said...

The problem is that there's no way for consumers to know what's green and what's greenwash.

There is a European eco-label,which guarantees greeness, and also performance. I use Aquados Simply washing powder, which has the label and has just been given Vegan Society registration as well.