Just… far in the future. Shoot, they’re learning.
Not to be churlish about this, but I’m reminded of a quote from the Church of the Subgenius that seems to apply to this situation. It’s just a touch too crude to repeat here, but the gist of it was: sometimes the stuff that people have to do just to achieve sexual release simply looks too much like work to the rest of us. Case in point:
Humans will be extinct in 100 years because the planet will be uninhabitable, according to Australian microbiologist Frank Fenner, one of the leaders of the effort to eradicate smallpox in the 1970s. He blames overcrowding, denuded resources and climate change.
Fenner’s prediction is not a sure bet, but he is correct that there is no way emissions reductions will be enough to save us from our trend toward doom. And there doesn’t seem to be any big global rush to reduce emissions, anyway. When the G7 called on Monday for all countries to reduce carbon emissions to zero in the next 85 years, the scientific reaction was unanimous: That’s far too late.
But who am I to deny people their fun? – Note that virtually nobody reading that prediction is going to be around in 2110 to assess its truth or falsity anyway. This is a bit of an improvement in the state of the art, actually. In the old days you’d hear stuff about how America would be reduced to 10% of its population by the year 2000 and that India would never feed itself or that the average life expectancy of Americans would be 42 by now or that large parts of the American seacoast would be underwater in 2015 and… do I need to go on?
The point is, among the roughly seventeen million things that eco-doom ‘futurists’ didn’t predict was one doozy of a technological breakthrough: the ability to look up and display all the stupid things that eco-doom futurists had confidently predicted earlier. You think that the person who wrote that article wanted to use Dr. Fenner’s 2110 Date of Doom? Of course not – but Fenner had used* a date that, barring a genuine breakthrough in human longevity, nobody reading this article in 2015 will ever, ever see. It’s safer – and, amazingly, eco-doomsters apparently CAN be taught.
Moe Lane (crosspost)
*Note the use of the past tense, there. Reuters neglected to spell out that Dr. Fenner made that original prediction – and incidentally died – in 2010. For that matter, Reuters also neglected to mention that Dr. Fenner made that prediction based on assumptions on birth rates that are, well, not supported by the data. Then again, Reuters is not exactly what one would call a news organization, except by mostly unearned courtesy.