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The Federalist: Greta Thunberg is the patron saint of drug-using, booty-shaking “occultist, apocalyptic climate paganism”

Saint Greta?

By David Futrelle

There have been a lot of terrible things said in recent days about environmentalists in general and Greta Thunberg in particular. Even our dear impeachable president got into the action, mocking the 16-year-old climate activist in a tweet that Thunberg quickly appropriated ahs her new Twitter bio. Meanwhile, a host of creepy online commenters suggested that Thunberg just needed a good spanking.

But the most unhinged attack on Thunberg I’ve seen so far comes not from some anonymous Tweeter with four followers and an anime avatar but from a writer for The Federalist, Sumantra Maitra, who argues that “Saint Greta” has become the Joan of Arc of a new pagan cult of environmentalism that is trying “not only to turn back time but essentially to destroy the entire current edifice” of Judeo-Christian civilization itself. “The pagan barbarians from the north,” he writes ominously, “are back circling outside the citadel.”

He’s especially perturbed by the protest group “Extinction Rebellion,” which he describes as

an apocalyptic cult that wants to radically end every thing around you, from your private cars to the burgers you eat and the plastic chairs in your yard. It is a cult that was formed after its founder took psychedelic drugs … Members have blocked D.C. and London intersections, “twerking” the way people in a pre-civilized era would perform a fertility dance to pray to Gaia.

And above it all, Maitra writes, floats the spirit of the pagan “Saint Greta, our perpetual teen of sorrow,” whom he compares, in what he sees as a devastating blow, to Joan of Arc — apparently forgetting that Joan wasn’t the product of paganism but of the Judea-Christian civilization he is purportedly defending.

To Maitra , the anger in her voice during her recent speech to the United Nations was evidence of an “emotional meltdown.” Yet, he laments, she was “hailed … as a brave savior as well as a vulnerable, autistic teen who shouldn’t be bullied.” (Evidently he’s a bit chagrined that anyone would speak up against bullying.)

And so, Maitra complains, the allegedly rational forces of climate change denial — sorry, “skepticism” — find themselves up against “barbarians” engaged in

Sexualized dances, psychedelic hallucinogens, worshiping nature, confessing sins in pagan animism, worshiping purified teen saints, and throwing them up on an altar, bereft of their childhood, to promote a greater cause. …

The strangest part of the whole rant is Maitra’s weird paean to old-timey Stalinism. Unlike the new environmentalist pagans, Maitra notes, the old left understood that the earth was there for humans to exploit as ruthlessly as they could. And there’s no way that Stalin would have put up with those awful environmentalist twerkers!

For all the Marxists’ faults, the old left at least wanted to conquer nature instead of turning subservient to it. Of course, that went to its own extremes, but one can imagine Joseph Stalin putting all twerking climate fanatics as mentally ill people in a forced labor camp to build railroads in Siberia. 

Apparently Maitra wishes he could do the same. Why is it always the ones who rant about the barbarians who turn out to be the least civilized?

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Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
2 years ago

Alan:

Really though the message is that animal exploitation is innately cruel and there’s no acceptable level.

Ok. I seem to recall you recently discussing this subject in terms of harm reduction, though.

Suppliers need the Red Tractor accreditation to sell to the more upmarket, and profitable, outlets. If they lose it they have to compete with cheaper foreign suppliers for the low end market. That’s often not viable.

To return to my original talking point, many Finnish farmers seem to think the greatest financial suicide would be giving up animal husbandry, because our climate and soils are mostly unsuitable for growing anything other than forage and low grade cereals for animal feed. We could perhaps produce the same total amount of food, perhaps convert some of the lowest grade farmland to forest, but it wouldn’t be commercially viable and certainly it wouldn’t generate the current amount of agricultural income.

Now, theoretically it should be possible to export most of our meat and dairy production, since the volume is fairly small on an international scale, assuming there’s a substantial market for high quality niche animal products, and we can brand our produce into this market. In this context, “high quality” would mostly mean “less environmentally destructive” and “carefully controlled for consumer safety”, because we have a very good track record in developing out production in that direction. There’s also a good background level in animal welfare (relatively speaking) and not breeding antibiotic resistance.

So, as long as brexit fails to happen, and if you folks manage to discredit Red Tractor, maybe we’ll take over that market niche…

Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

@ lumipuna

I seem to recall you recently discussing this subject in terms of harm reduction

Indeed; but even stopping meat and dairy production completely can only be harm reduction, not elimination. Our very existence has an impact.

maybe we’ll take over that market niche…

Heh, maybe so. If we do hard Brexit we’ll be so desperate for trade deals Soylent Green might make a comeback.

In seriousness, there may well be a vestigial meat and dairy trade for the elite; but the aim is to adjust social attitudes.

Even in my lifetime I’ve seen smoking and drink driving move from being completely socially acceptable, and even celebrated; to absolute pariah status.

I can envisage the same happening for meat and dairy. It could well end up being on a par with how bear baiting or dog fighting is perceived now.

Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
2 years ago

Alan:

I agree it’s very possible that we’ll eventually abolish animal husbandry altogether – I’m thinking on relatively short term future.

Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

More Greta:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/oct/01/greta-thunbergs-defiance-upsets-the-patriarchy-and-its-wonderful

@ lumipuna

I’m thinking on relatively short term future.

Well, depending on what interpretation of the IPCC findings you go with, we either have twelve years or eighteen months before the damage is irreversible. So plenty of time to go vegan. 😉

Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

Bit more explanation about how we’re trying not to alienate people whose livelihoods are currently based on animal exploitation; and of course ‘optics’.

https://www.plantbasednews.org/opinion/why-animal-rebellions-plans-changed-and-what-is-actually-happening

Dvärghundspossen
Dvärghundspossen
2 years ago

Meanwhile, the church of Sweden is totally down with fighting climate change. The archbishop and all the regular bishops are talking about it and producing official letters etc, our local church only serves vegan food on church lunches and dinners largely for environmental reasons, they keep mass in a smaller wooden building rather than the big stone church during wintertime in order to save electricity and so on.
But I guess the entire church of Sweden is secretly pagan or something?

Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

@ dvarghundpossen

Hey; it’s so great to see you again! We were chatting about you recently in certain vegan circles; we could have done with your expertise and better articulating words skills.

But yeah, the Church of England is very much the same. Obviously pagans too.

https://www.churchofengland.org/environment

Dvärghundspossen
Dvärghundspossen
2 years ago

Hi again!

I’m a little less active on the internet in general nowadays. 🙂

Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
2 years ago

Church of Sweden in 1527: Eradicate paganism among the subjects of newly established Vasa dynasty (Diet of Västerås)

Church of Sweden in 2010s: Promote veganism among the population watching Game of Thrones (diet of Westeros)

(Hi, Dvärghundspossen!)

Arilou
Arilou
2 years ago

I honestly dont see animal products being completely excised from human diet, though I can certainly see a significant reduction, but the realities of various biomes means that exclusively growing for human consumption just isnt viable in many areas.

There is definitely a trend (and a positive one) of focusing on reducing meat consumption, but there is a pretty big difference between reduction and elimination. (and thats before we get into the ecological consequences of elimination pastureland, thats not as big a priority as climate change ofc, but theres quite a lot of biodiversity tied up into pastures and meadows)

Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
2 years ago

There is definitely a trend (and a positive one) of focusing on reducing meat consumption, but there is a pretty big difference between reduction and elimination.

Indeed. There is growing debate about reduction of meat consumption, and it gets constantly strawmanned/misunderstood (for example, in Finnish public discourse) into a debate about veganism.

Alan Robertshaw
2 years ago

We got write up in the Daily Mail! It’s as fair and balanced as one might imagine.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7539867/Animal-Rebellion-Theyre-militant-vegan-wing-plan-stop-eating-meat-fish-dairy.html

Fruitloopsie
Fruitloopsie
2 years ago

I love Greta ? she is a very wonderful person. And it really breaks my heart the extreme misogynistic, abliest, ageist backlash and constant bullying she has been receiving from not only right wingers but from even leftists too.

We autistic girls have very little representation and the violence and discrimination towards us are skyrocketing.

Please everyone go follow her on Twitter. Not only does she talk about climate change but she has also supported native and other non-white communities too.

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