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The W - Random - Earth Day Rant
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samoflange
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Since: 22.2.04
From: Cambridge, MA

Since last post: 408 days
Last activity: 400 days
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.27
I posted this elsewhere a few days ago and got a pretty good discussion out of it. Thought it'd be interesting to do the same here.
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Earth Day is good in theory, but most of the time it gets blown out of proportion.

I'm a volunteer for the Charles River Conservancy here in Boston, MA. Several times a month we organize cleanups along the river, mostly in the city where the trash problem is the worst. In April, one of the cleanups is aligned with Earth Day and we get thousands more volunteers than usual. What's the problem with that? Here we go:

1) We give away free t-shirts to people for participating. Thus, many people sign up for the free t-shirt and leave. This is not speculation. I have overheard conversations planning to do it and have watched people walk up to get a t-shirt and then walk away from the event without getting gloves and trash bags. Note that these are not the types of people who NEED a t-shirt. No they're usually your typical city hipster douchebag who wants the shirt because it's quirky and fun to have helped in a trash cleanup but is too much of a pussy to pick up broken glass and used condoms for a few hours once a year.

2) Before starting on Earth Day, a big stage, podium, decorations, and PA system are setup at a central location by the Charles River. Somebody, typically the head of the parks department, gives a 20 minute speech about being "green" and recycling and not being wasteful and not littering. Meanwhile they serve coffee and donuts using paper and styrofoam. And, here's the kicker for me, the whole deal is powered by a gigantic, insanely loud generator. I'd estimate about 10% of the people in the crowd actually listen to what the guys has to say. The rest are milling about, talking amongst themselves, or jacking off to some nonsense on their cell phones. And the people who do listen to these speeches are the dumbest of them all because the guy never says anything worth hearing. It's the same old bullshit being proclaimed in an event that itself is so wasteful, unnecessary, and self indulgent that it has no business even existing.

3) The cleanups usually run from 0900-1200. When it's not Earth Day, we focus on smaller areas and are able to do a great job in a small space. On Earth Day, we have thousands more people to help, you'd think we'd get tons more done. Absolutely not, because that would make sense. Instead, what we have are idiots carrying bags along the sidewalks when 95% of the trash is along the river bank. We have piles of 10 used trash bags with less than 1 bag's worth of garbage collected amongst them. We have grown-ass adults playing tag, throwing garbage at each other, or sitting on benches texting their friends about how they are totally out volunteering because they love the earth and are awesome. Fuck them all, they are not worth the fundraising efforts I help with all year long to pay for this Earth Day extravaganza.



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DrDirt
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Since: 8.10.03
From: flyover country

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.56
Samoflange, you correct but so? This is just human nature. We want to feel good and feel like we are doing something whether we are or not. And we have a great deal of difficulty understanding logically what happens when we do something, especially if it makes us feel good. And finally, we sincerely want to save the planet, we just don't want to be inconvienced while doing it. I realize there are committed people out there but they are not the majority.

My favorite is going to save the planet stuff or wildlife/outdooe stuff where they promote conservation and having bottles of water handed out.



Perception is reality
Leroy
Boudin blanc








Since: 7.2.02

Since last post: 27 min.
Last activity: 11 min.
#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.09
So according to local rumor (and WikiPedia), the concept of Earth Day was started after a major oil spill off the coast of Santa Barbara in 1969. And depending on which version you hear - it was either the start of Earth Day, or the start of the modern environmental movement - depending on the level of Santa Barbara pretentiousness of the person telling you.

The "Santa Barbara started Earth Day" mantra is repeated so often in town that it makes me want to take the wide end of a shovel to the face of every a-hole who keeps "educating me" about it.

Having said that - I refuse to participate in the local Earth Day fair because it has become less about real environmental issues and more a marketing campaign for every wing-nut with some new environmental idea that they believe is going to save the planet. That - and all these "zero growthers" who believe that no one else, U.S. Citizen or not, should be allowed to move to the state of California. They're not just anti-illegal immigration. They're anti-migration... period.

Did I mention the Scientologists have a table at the fair? WHAT... THE... FUCK... does Scientology have to do with the environment? You don't see a single other "religious" organization with a table at Earth Day EXCEPT the Scientologists. (BTW - we found out that they give a LOT of money for that table, so really, it's not about the environment so much as the check you're willing to write to be at the fair.)

And ANOTHER thing...



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Since: 9.12.01
From: Bay City, OR

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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.34
It is telling that an organization that requires a sense of belonging, group-think, and a hive-mind mentality would seek out pretentious environmentalists as potential converts.

You have to ask yourself if Scientology knows something about these people specifically, or if this is just part of their shotgun approach.

There is a reason they do personality assessments when they recruit members, though.




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Leroy
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Since: 7.2.02

Since last post: 27 min.
Last activity: 11 min.
#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.09
    Originally posted by Guru Zim
    It is telling that an organization that requires a sense of belonging, group-think, and a hive-mind mentality would seek out pretentious environmentalists as potential converts.

    You have to ask yourself if Scientology knows something about these people specifically, or if this is just part of their shotgun approach.


If you visit downtown and walk down our main street (State St.), there is a major Church of Scientology storefront.

Here's the Google Maps street view (maps.google.com)

That store front is across the street from two of the major "college night" bars (O'Malley's and Madison's). Michael Jordan (yes, that Michael Jordan) bar tends at O'Malley's during our "Fiesta Weekend". Pay the $50 cover, and Michael Jordan will make you a Margarita. (When he's there, there are 3-5 police officers standing on the sidewalk outside the bar making sure foot traffic moves along.)

This area that probably accounts for 80% of the tourist foot traffic on the weekends and 90% of the college night party crowd Thursday through Saturday nights.

Point being, that Church of Scientology is occupying PRIME Santa Barbara commercial real estate - and has for at least the last 15 years. It's not just a "belonging, group-think, hive-mind, pretentious environmentalists" thing, it's a "belonging, group-think, hive-mind, pretentious Santa Barbara" thing.



Who likes the little little duckies in the pond? I do, I do, I do, a chicka-quack quack.
samoflange
Lap cheong








Since: 22.2.04
From: Cambridge, MA

Since last post: 408 days
Last activity: 400 days
#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.27
    Originally posted by DrDirt
    Samoflange, you correct but so? This is just human nature.


Oh, I know, I'm fully aware that they're the regular folks and I'm in the minority here. That's why I put the word "rant" in the title there.

The major point that I boiled my feelings down to is that the whole marketing industry that's grown up around the term "green" is absurd. Truly caring about the sustainability of the natural world around you should lead to the rejection of the development of such an industry. I don't consider myself to be of an particularly exceptional intelligence, so anybody ought to be able to make that connection if they take a second to really think about it the next time they hear Green This and Green That.

The water bottle thing also gets to me, but I thought I had enough to go on about as it were!



Lloyd: When I met Mary, I got that old fashioned romantic feeling, where I'd do anything to bone her.
Harry: That's a special feeling.
The Thrill
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Since: 16.4.02
From: Green Bay, WI

Since last post: 225 days
Last activity: 72 days
#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.25
Godspeed, men of the 2nd Bn, 127th Infantry, 32d "Red Arrow" Brigade, Wisconsin Army National Guard! Victory in Iraq!

    Originally posted by Leroy
    So according to local rumor (and WikiPedia), the concept of Earth Day was started after a major oil spill off the coast of Santa Barbara in 1969. And depending on which version you hear - it was either the start of Earth Day, or the start of the modern environmental movement - depending on the level of Santa Barbara pretentiousness of the person telling you.

    The "Santa Barbara started Earth Day" mantra is repeated so often in town that it makes me want to take the wide end of a shovel to the face of every a-hole who keeps "educating me" about it.


It's another thing we're slightly proud of here...that it was a Wisconsin senator, the late Gaylord Nelson, that started (after seeing your aforementioned Santa Barbara oil spill.)

For us cheeseheads...please, swing away with that shovel! :-)






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