Here’s a post from August 15, 2021. Seems once again I was right on the money. As Covid becomes old news and reasonably contained in many places, the public needs something new to get hysterical about. Don’t bother reading the article, just scroll down to the red and blue graphic. It proves what I suspected. Earthpages is slightly ahead of its time (even if its slogans aren’t…) πŸ™‚

There’s a thinker I read in my youth who said that life is dull and boring when things are too safe and sound. We need challenges to grow and feel alive. Perhaps it was Joseph Campbell or Carl Jung—possibly Jean Baudrillard.

I can’t remember exactly right now, but this particular thinker argued that as horrible as wars and natural disasters are, they make us feel alive — at least, they make the survivors feel alive.

Most of us would be horrified at such a suggestion. We want disorder? We want calamity? What kind of a nut would say that?

However, if you take a quick look at TV and the movies, a good percentage of the fare is about murder, death and dying.

Today, if we don’t get enough disaster in real life, we can always ‘enjoy’ it vicariously.

Sicko but true.

So I drew a little graph comparing my perception of the news coverage about Covid-19 and Climate Change.

When the pandemic hit we heard almost nothing about Climate Change. Almost everything was about the virus, lockdowns, deaths, the hope of some kind of vaccine. Climate Change news took a backseat and was almost ignored because, I argued then, Covid was a real global threat whereas Climate Change was more about hype and not a full-fledged crisis.

Agree with me or not. I don’t care. I don’t even know if I agree with that position anymore. But what I do find interesting is how the news about Climate Change has increased now that we have vaccines and Covid is somewhat under control in many countries.

Crisis What Crisis? – x axis = duration | y axis = amount of news coverage

Clearly, this is not a scientific graph! It’s more about me playing around on a Sunday morning, remembering how to get straight lines with Photoshop Elements. But I think it points to something true.

Where are we right now? Around x=3 y=3? Seems the news is pretty balanced these days between Covid and Climate Change.

And if the vaccines continue to help and people behave intelligently around the world, we just might see things move on to 4,2 and 4,4…

Point is, we need hype. It’s a great way to feel important and ward off depression. Just look at any science page with all the glowing faces of scientists fighting climate change. They’re so engaged and proud to be ‘saving the Earth.’

Maybe they are saving the Earth. Or maybe they’re getting caught up in an idea that makes them feel good.

Hard to say.

But one thing’s for sure. Not many people will agree with me.

Perhaps they are too hyped up and moving into 4,4 and beyond..?