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Environmental Madness (XX)

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5. Exploiting the Tsunami to Wage ‘Climate Terrorism’

The media have curious attitudes. Though most people take for granted that one of their interests is to spread sensational news, there are times when they remain absolutely or nearly completely silent about some otherwise sensational issue that should quench their thirst for topics that arouse great interest. Let us consider a case in point.

In the photo above, used in a 2009 advertisement a squadron of civilian passenger aircraft plunges over Manhattan (where one can still see the twin towers) and is about to collide with the huge mass of buildings. On the right, this sentence: “The tsunami killed a hundred times more people than September 11. Another phrase adds: The planet is brutally powerful; preserve it.

The advertisement suggests that the 2004 Asian tsunami was caused by human negligence and aggression on the planet. The obvious conclusion, according to the second sentence, is an imperative to preserve nature as advocated by the environmentalist agenda.

 

This exploitation of the 9/11 tragedy caused understandable commotion in the United States and drew nearly universal condemnation as  it was  caused not by nature’s colossal forces, but by terrorists whose ideology now inspires many other rogue groups and is even supported by some political regimes.

The advertising campaign, part of a video shown at Cannes, was developed by advertising agency DDB Brazil at the request of the environmental NGO WWF Brazil. It was intended for dissemination in Brazil at a time when the country was understandably gaining international prominence in the environmental area because of the Amazon region. It also had a political dimension, as Senator Marina Silva of the Brazilian Green Party (who had recently left the Workers Party) showed a slight rise in electoral preferences as a candidate for the Presidency, bringing the so-called environmentalist agenda to center stage.

Given the hugely negative impact of this ad on the Internet and especially among marketing experts, the great uproar it caused in the United States where it ended up in all TV news and in major newspapers, and that it was prepared by a Brazilian advertising agency for an international NGO established in Brazil to be aired in Brazil, would have been enough for the news  to be reported all over the Brazilian media. Interestingly, however, it never did. How strange…

Mark Wnek, chairman of New York’s Lowe advertising agency and one of the most important names in ad creation, called the ad “absolutely horrendous and despicable.” And anchor Keith Olbermann of MSNBC’s Countdown equated the ad team at DDB Brazil as the worst people in the world. Outrage over the ad caused ​​WWF International to try and extricate itself from its Brazilian subsidiary, calling the ad an “offensive and tasteless” piece which “should never have seen the light of day.” Finally, in a joint statement with DDB Brazil, WWF Brazil expressed its regret at the unfortunate incident attributing it to the inexperience of some of the professionals involved: “WWF Brazil and DDB Brazil reaffirm that this ad should never have been created, approved or aired. And they regret what happened, reiterating their apology to all who felt offended.”

However, all these reactions failed to stress a hugely important and serious aspect: the insinuation that the tsunami was a brutal response of the planet to the continuous ‘assaults’ by civilized man. It so happens that the tsunami has nothing to do with any of man’s alleged assaults on the environment. This led Ken Wheaton to state in an article published on the site of Ad Age (the “Bible” of advertising) on September 1, 2009: “This shows that its creators also are scientifically ignorant: after all, tsunamis have nothing to do with preservation or conservation. They are typically caused by earthquakes or other geological forces which, as far as we know are not affected by animal extinction, deforestation or global warming.”

In its quest to convince the public of the compelling need to implement the environmental agenda, WWF Brazil did not shrink from making that demagogic and shocking insinuation. This is the crux of the matter, which is clear to everyone: environmentalists do not hesitate to resort to provocative and even cruel emotional impact in order to impinge their “arguments “and “conclusions” on the public. By manipulating the public’s legitimate feelings of horror, and by unscrupulous advertising gimmicks, apocalyptic environmentalists try to foist science fiction on the public as an evident “fact.”

Bjorn Lomborg

In the next step, alarmist environmentalists try to convince their victims to admit the need for major changes in the present civilization. They thus violate people’s minds by causing them to accept false solutions to nonexistent problems. All this led the influential Danish author Bjorn Lomborg, 43 (The Skeptical Environmentalist) to state in a lecture in São Paulo that environmentalists act with humanity, like a criminal who puts a gun to his victim’s head and demands that he take immediate decision. And he concluded by saying that it would be foolish to imagine that such a decision could be balanced and rational. [1]

 

[1] Cf. “Ambientalismo: arrombando consciências” [Environmentalism: Breaking into People’s Consciences] by José Carlos Sepúlveda da Fonseca, Sept. 9, 2009 on his Radar da mídia blog. Cf. also Catolicismo No. 706, October 2009).

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