Day By Day

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Apocalyptic Totalitarianism

One of the most celebrated of France's "New Philosophers" was Pascal Bruckner. Celebrated, that is, until recently. Now he is one of the most vilified figures in Europe. Why? What happened?

Bruckner committed what many on the Left consider to be the ultimate sin -- he published a book [The Fanaticism of the Apocalypse] attacking the intellectual foundations of the Green movement. His argument is that, whatever the merits of the science of climate change, global warming alarmists have advanced a despotic agenda which they attempt to justify by deploying apocalyptic rhetoric that has the effect of infantilizing the public, the better to control it. He compares climate change alarmism to medieval peasant religion and argues that the "propaganda of fear", advanced by the Green movement has disturbing totalitarian overtones. Moreover, he notes, implementing the Green agenda would consign the vast majority of the world's population to perpetual poverty.

It's an interesting argument. The book is not currently available in English, but you can read a good summary of his positions here.

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