Ferd Limpy turns 18 at the end of this month. While finishing high school and playing Ultimate Pocket Pool on weekends, he’s also suing the federal government in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C.
The Hellhole Palms, California, teen and four other juvenile plaintiffs want government officials to do more to prevent the risks of climate change — the dangerous storms, heat waves, rising sea levels, and food-supply disruptions that scientists warn will threaten their generation absent a major turnabout in global energy policy. Specifically, the students are demanding that the U.S. government start reducing national emissions of carbon dioxide by at least six percent per year beginning in 2013 and provide immunity from potential punishments for “Senior Skip Day” at HP High.
“I think a lot of young people realize that this is an urgent time, and that we’re not going to solve this problem just by riding our bikes more,” Limpy said between deep swallows from his mother’s breast.
Limpy drifted off to sleep in his mother’s lap, punctuating the moment with a loud fart and a deceptively small burp. For lack of anything relevant to say, Mrs. Limpy stated that he and she needed some more “bonding time” because her baby was so stressed out by his concern over daily temperature swings.
The interview was cut short when Mrs. Limpy was engrossed in changing Ferd’s Depends™, saying “This is SO much harder to do when he’s got wood.” A follow-up interview was hastily not arranged.
Ok, seriously though… Nearly the same damn thing really did happen. Only the nursing and diaper changing likely only happens emotionally. The kid and his little friends really do care about the environment and are totally committed to it, which is kind of sad since they haven’t got enough real-life experience to even feel passionate about anything for real yet. These kids are going to have an interesting time when they see the schism between college (basically “high school” extended by four more years at a much higher cost) and the real world, which isn’t going to really give a rat’s ass about the self-centered little brat and his frivolous lawsuits.
Apologies if that seemed a lot cynical. I’m in a mood.
But this is serious stuff, really.
This Friday, U.S. District Court Judge Robert L. Wilkins, an Obama appointee, will hear arguments on the defendants’ motion to dismiss the complaint.
[ The court is the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in case they didn’t see that important enough to mention, which they didn’t. – LK ]
While skeptics may view the case as little more than a publicity stunt, its implications have been serious enough to attract the time and resources of major industry leaders. Last month, Judge. Wilkins granted a motion to intervene in the case by the National Association of Manufacturers, joined by Delta Construction Company, Dalton Trucking Inc., Southern California Contractors Association, and the California Dump Truck Owners Association.
“At issue is whether a small group of individuals and environmental organizations can dictate through private tort litigation the economic, energy, and environmental policies of the entire nation,” wrote National Association of Manufacturers spokesman Jeff Ostermeyer in an email. Granting the plaintiffs’ demands, he added, “would carry serious and immediate consequences for industrial and economic productivity — increasing manufacturing and transportation costs and decreasing global competitiveness.” The manufacturers’ legal brief says the restrictions being sought “could substantially eliminate the use of conventional energy in this country.” It also argues that the plaintiffs haven’t proved they have a legal right to sue.
Cruel Wife wondered if someone was *gasp* … using… these kids for their agenda. Well, that just doesn’t seem right. Let’s see here… oh. Oh. Oh, ok. Remember how I said the kids don’t really have enough life experience yet? Well, apparently some see that as great, because it makes for tools that earnestly believe what they are saying, even if it is bullshit, and that really sells well.
While teenagers serve as the public face of the lawsuit, the idea itself came from Julia Olson, an attorney based in Eugene, Oregon. Olson founded an organization called Our Children’s Trust after watching the Al Gore documentary An Inconvenient Truth while she was seven months pregnant.
Olson and other supporters of the suit believe that having kids as plaintiffs makes a particularly visceral appeal to adults to take action. Indeed, many of the adults involved said that their own children and grandchildren had inspired them. “Becoming a grandfather motivated me to speak out,” said climate scientist James Hansen, the director of the U.S. NASA Goddard Space Institute and the man who first brought Loorz and Olson together. Hansen, in his free time, is a conscientious objector to U.S. energy policy who has been arrested three times at peaceful protests.
In support of the children’s suit, Hansen has drawn up recommendations as to how the U.S. government can meet the greenhouse-gas reduction goals, through cuts in fossil-fuel-powered electricity and reforestation. “My talents are mainly in the sciences,” he said, “but it just became so clear that no one is doing anything to prevent what is becoming scientifically a very clear picture. I didn’t want my grandchildren to say that “Opa” (Dutch for “grandpa”) knew what was happening but didn’t do anything about it.”
There, SOYLENT GREEN, if you haven’t run with that tidbit (Hansen using kids to do his dirty work), would you, please?
Being born-again linked to more brain atrophy.
Whoa. Say that again?
According to the study, people who said they were a “born-again” Protestant or Catholic, or conversely, those who had no religious affiliation, had more hippocampal shrinkage (or “atrophy”) compared to people who identified themselves as Protestants, but not born-again.
The study is published online in PLoS ONE.
Oh, well, then. We all know PLoS ONE is a fine upstanding… newspaper? Magazine? Proceeding? Flyer? Writing on a bathroom wall?
Well it must be valid research because after all, they published it, right?