Michael Moore is my new hero. Yes, that Michael Moore: the corpulent American guy in the baseball cap who pretends to be a blue- collar ordinary Joe while lounging in five-star hotels; who repeatedly lambasts capitalism while raking in millions from his tendentious anti-free-market documentaries; who, certainly round about 2001 when he published that loathsomely overrated potboiler Stupid White Men, would have been high on my list of the people in the world I most wanted to see boiled alive in a vat of cat vomit. Him.
What has changed? Well sometimes the hateful enemy of your enemy becomes even more valuable an ally than your actual friends. Churchill found this in the War. Sure it was lovely being chums with Roosevelt – but who was it who wiped out four out of every five of the Germans killed in the entire conflict? Wicked Stalin and his evil Commie Soviets, that’s who.
So now Michael Moore has become my new best frenemy and the reason is an amazing new documentary which I urge you to watch (it’s free) on YouTube called Planet of the Humans. It was written and directed by his long time collaborator Jeff Gibbs and it sets out – the title’s a clue – to be the kind of worthy, earnest, bleeding heart greenie lament that most of us would surely have hated: an interminable whinge about how overpopulation is killing our beloved planet.
Luckily that vapid Malthusian dirge isn’t actually the film they ended up making. Instead, quite possibly by accident, Gibbs and Moore (who has given it clout by Executive Producing) have made what may yet prove to be the most compellingly powerful critique ever levelled against the modern green movement.
Had someone like me made such a movie – as indeed I was planning to do before Coronavirus threw a spanner in the works – it might have been well received but probably wouldn’t have done much to move the political dial on green lunacy. What makes Planet of the Humans so devastating is that comes from the hard left, deep green end of the spectrum. Gibbs, in his youth, was one of those long haired eco-loon activists who sabotaged bulldozers by putting sugar in their diesel tank. Most of the people he interviews are likeminded greenies – university sociologists and such like – appalled at how the noble intentions of their movement have been corrupted by wicked capitalism.
Actually – a common misconception not just in this but throughout Moore’s oeuvre – this isn’t real capitalism at work, but the kind of grotesque, bloated crony capitalism which is the speciality of leftists like Barack Obama. But let’s not be too picky about the details here, what matters is the bigger picture. This documentary is going to drive a wedge through the global Left’s most cherished ideological orthodoxy – the Green New Deal –and force its adherents to ask themselves a question they’ve never been forced to answer before: do you really care about the future of the planet – or are you merely a wrecker, in it only because you want to destroy Western industrial civilisation?
It’s a key distinction – and the one which first drew me to become an anti-green crusader myself. Sure I’m bothered by the shonky faux-science underpinning the great global warming scare story; sure I’m irked by the new clerisy – all those otherwise unemployable environmental science graduates, shyster politicians, hairshirt eco-fascist activists and rent-seeking corporate greedheads – raping the productive sector of the economy (and scaring schoolkids) while pretending they’re saving the world.
But what infuriates me above all – it’s why I called the Aussie edition of my book Watermelons ‘Killing the Earth to Save It’ – is that the ‘green’ measures we’re heavily subsidising with our tax dollar to ‘rescue’ the planet are actually destroying it.
Take wind turbines. I call them bat-chomping, bird-slicing eco-crucifixes because that’s what they do: barotraumatising bats (i.e. causing their internal organs to implode) and wiping out endangered raptors and other, often rare birds with their lethal blades. They also, of course, despoil the view for miles around; require bases with enough concrete to fill a large swimming pool, and toxic rare earth minerals mined under the most eco-unfriendly conditions in Chinese dead zones; ruin the sleep – and often the health too – of those humans unlucky enough to be exposed to their low frequency noise and shadow flicker. All while doing not one jot to reduce global CO2 emissions because, hey, they need fossil fuel power stations on standby ready for all those occasions when the wind isn’t blowing or when – in the case of similarly useless and expensive solar –the sun isn’t shining.
Of course, when a wicked right-winger like me points this out, it can all too easily be ignored by the Left as the ravings of a Big-Oil-funded (I wish) fascist. Coming from Moore and Gibbs, however, not so much: which is why they’re currently getting so much opprobrium from renewables-promoting leftists like Josh Fox (the documentary maker behind the highly dubious anti-fracking polemic Gasland), who have been doing their level best (in classic leftist style) to close down the argument by getting the movie withdrawn by its distributor.
I feel the Left’s pain – and very delicious it is too. No sentient being, whether on the left or right, could fail to leave this movie with anything but disgust and horror at what renewables are doing to the environment: old forests (and cherished walking country) wiped out to create wood chips for biofuels; 500-year old yuccas in California’s Sonoran desert shredded to make way for solar arrays whose only practical purpose is to enrich crony capitalists like Al Gore and Michael Bloomberg.
With hindsight, I begin almost to wonder whether Moore wasn’t always a conservative deep cover agent all along. Roger & Me, his debut, about the off-shoring of the Detroit motor industry in Mexico, was really a Trumpian lament for the decline of blue collar America. He’d look great in a MAGA baseball cap. Maybe it’s time he came out of the closet.
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