Which is a nice way to segue to George Carlin, don't you think. Think of it as a thought for summer:
Everybody's gonna save something now. Save the trees. Save the bees. Save the whales. Save those snails. And the greatest arrogance of all - save the planet. What? What? Are these fucking people kidding me? Save the planet? We don't even know how to take care of ourselves yet. We haven't learned how to care for one another. We're gonna save the fucking planet? I'm gettin' tired of that shit. Tired of that shit. I'm tired of fucking Earth Day. I'm tired of these self righteous environmentalists, these white, bourgeois liberals who think the only thing wrong with this country is there aren't enough bicycle paths. People tryin' to make the world safe for their Volvos.
Besides, environmentalists don't give a shit about the planet. They don't care about the planet, not in the abstract they don't, not in the abstract they don't. You know what they're interested in? A clean place to live, their own habitat. They're worried that some day in the future they might be personally inconvenienced. Narrow, unenlightened, self interest doesn't impress me. Besides, there is nothing wrong with the planet, nothing wrong with the planet. The planet is fine. The people are fucked. Difference, difference. The planet is fine.
Compared to the people, the planet is doing great- been here 4 1/2 billion years. Did you ever think about the arithmetic? The planet has been here 4 1/2 billion years. We've been here what, a hundred thousand, maybe two hundred thousand? And we've only been engaged in heavy industry for a little over 200 years. 200 years versus 4 1/2 billion. And we have the conceit to think that somehow we're a threat? That somehow we're gonna put in jeopardy this beautiful little blue-green ball that's just a-floatin' around the Sun? The planet has been through a lot
worse than us, been through all kinds of things worse than us, been through earthquakes, volcanoes, plate tectonics, continental drifts, solar flares, Sun spots, magnetic storms, the magnetic reversal of the poles, hundreds of thousands of years of bombardment by comets and asteroids and meteors, worldwide floods, tidal waves, worldwide fires, erosion, cosmic rays, recurring ice ages...
You wanna know how the planet's doing? Ask those people at Pompeii who are frozen into position, from volcanic ash, how the planet's doing. Wanna know if the planet's alright? Ask those people in Mexico City or Armenia or a hundred other places buried under thousands of tons of earthquake rubble, if they feel like a threat to the planet this week. How 'bout those people in Kilauea, Hawaii who build their homes right next to an active volcano, and then wonder why they have lava in the living room.
The planet will be here for a long, long, long time after we're gone, and it will heal itself, it will cleanse itself 'cause that's what it does. It's a self-correcting system. The air and the water will recover. The Earth will be renewed, and if it's true that plastic is not degradable, well, the planet will simply incorporate plastic into a new paradigm: the Earth plus plastic. The Earth doesn't share our prejudice towards plastic. Plastic came out of the Earth. The Earth probably sees plastic as just another one of its children. 'Could be the only reason the Earth allowed us to be spawned from it in the first place. It wanted plastic for itself, didn't know how to make it, needed us.
'Could be the answer to our age old, egocentric, philosophical question: "Why are we here?" "Plastic, asshole."