Awhile back Hans Schellnhuber, director of the ultra-alarmist Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), released his master plan for the Great Transformation of global society – from one fuelled by carbon to a Utopian one powered by fuzzy-warm renewable energy.
This he claims would rescue the planet from imminent climate catastrophe. To help guide world leaders through the transformation, Schellnhuber and group of wisemen authored a guide called: World In Transition – A Social Contract For Sustainability.
Economist Carl Christian von Weizsäcker wrote a commentary in Germany’s flagship online political daily Franfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on Schellnhuber’s 420-page master plan. The WBGU’s plan calls for the transformation to be done in 10 – 20 years, where “not only must the production and consumption habits fundamentally change, but also the incentive systems, institutions, normative maxims and scientific disciplines (foremost the economic science disciplines).”
Sounds pretty damn radical.
Weizsäcker sees the whole thing as naive and worrisome, and reminds us that the Neolithic Revolution took thousands of years to complete and that the Industrial Revolution took 150 years, and is actually still in progress in many poorer countries. So how can anyone expect a revolution of the scale Schellnhuber proposes to be accomplished in 20 years? By having a total lack of knowledge of how societies work is the answer.
Of course this Great Transformation would be led by a powerful guiding global state, Schellnhuber proposes. Weizsäcker goes on to compare the WBGU’s proposed endeavour to Vladimir Lenin’s “proletarian Russian Revolution of 1917, under leadership of the Bolshevist wing of the communist party”, which also promised to “lead humanity to a new age, into a global-wide economic and societal system that would end the exploitation of men by men and create a world that could not be better”.
We know what history teaches us with respect to this announcement of a Fundamental Revolution. After the citizens said good bye to the most brutal of methods of the guiding Stalin-State, the empire ended up in a hopeless dead-end stagnation which finally ended, and had to end, in the total collapse of a historical lesson”.
I’d say Schellnhuber and the WBGU are well beyond naive. What Schellnhuber proposes is nothing less than a reckless and adventurous social engineering experiment, tantamount to a half-baked plan that calls for taking apart a jumbo jet full of passengers and putting it back together again as a glider – all in midflight.
Schellnhuber and his WBGU of course would like to have the audience believe that this Revolution would be carried out “democratically, freely and successfully.” Deomcracy itself would have to undergo a transformation. Just how democratic would the WBGU’s proposed new society be? Weizsäcker translates the WBGU’s text as follows:
More democracy yes, but only if it serves to achieve our aims.”
We are actually not speaking about democracy when the wisemen (modern: the scientists) of the country prescribe the result up front and inform the people: ‘you may decide – but only as long as you decide correctly. Otherwise we will have to take away your co-determination on behalf of the collective good.”
Now allow me to translate: That’s tyranny, and not democracy. Weizsäcker sums it up:
Karl Popper and Friedrich August von Hayek would turn in their graves if they heard this highly offical recipe as a new form of democracy.”
Of course not everyone is wary of the WBGU’s proposed societal coup d’etat. There are many leaders out there who, all doped up with green ideology, think these adventurous, poorly thought out schemes are going to save humanity. Like German President Christian Wulff.
Sigh – those who forget history are condemned to repeat it.