Al Gore and his supporters promised us that, if only we used enough fossil fuels, man-made global warming would bring about an environmental disaster that would simultaneously roast and flood Earth.
In the 1990s, one of the leading global-warming scientists predicted that European and American children would soon grow up without ever seeing snow. Another top climate scientist firmly declared that the traditional White Christmas was a thing of the past.
We were told that the science was settled: As environmentally irresponsible and all-around-dreadful humans drove Earth’s temperature upward, the polar ice caps would melt, the polar bears would drown, and the rising ocean levels would inundate the world’s coastal areas, creating millions of eco-refugees.
Well, that was good enough for me.
Giddy at the looming prospect of being able to boil lobsters in my toilet while New Jersey disappeared underwater, I set about planning my new life as the Nucky Johnson of Chestnut Hill’s Boardwalk Empire. After all, once they tired of their FEMA trailers and tent cities, those displaced Jersey refugees were going to need someplace to rebuild. Why not on my newly valuable property at the area’s highest point?
But then, as the hopeful 1990s gave way to the dismal present, it became apparent that things weren’t panning out. Take, for example, these pesky recurring deep-freeze winters, to say nothing of the last two months of Snowmageddon. And, may I add, not only is New Jersey still disappointingly high and dry, but the damn ocean hasn’t risen a single inch. Plus, it turns out, polar bears can swim. A total bust.
Yes, once again, the working man (that would be me) gets screwed. And Gore seemed like such a reliable guy! It’s enough to shake one’s faith in our usually trustworthy political class, to say nothing of all those climate-science geeks. It’s almost as if they had some kind of hidden agenda. …
Grief counselors say that there are stages to recovering from the shock of a great loss, such as learning that you have a fatal disease. First comes denial, followed by anger, and then acceptance.
Now that my dream of reaping huge profits from the promised global-warming disaster lies shattered, I struggle to deal with my disappointment and loss. I’m past the denial part, but, before I reach the acceptance stage, I must somehow relieve my anger. So, I have a new plan. It involves a video camera, a baseball bat, and a colony of baby seals.
I hope to sell the television rights to Fox News.
George Parry is a former federal and state prosecutor practicing law in Philadelphia. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.