Comment 60888

By Zot (anonymous) | Posted March 10, 2011 at 15:41:26

"Why do we do this? ... So we can breed like bunnies until we have over-populated our planet and consumed ourselves to death?"

Ummmm... yep, I thought that would be obvious.

The reason that it's us and not Raccoons that are trashing the planet isn't because Racoons have some deep inner wisdom about living in harmony with the planet and their fellow creatures. It's because Racoons don't know how to do language, technology, tool use, fire, and the exploitation of fossil fuels. So their numbers and influence on the environment are held in a more or less steady state by the factors that constrain their growth as a species. Provide an environment free of predators, full of food and water, remove the Racoon shit as it piles up and you'll be hip deep in Racoons in no time at all.

We are still at the stage where we can push back our constraints and expand our share of the available resources of the plant, at the expense of other species of course, because of the nifty tricks we have figured out that those other species have not.

We probably started down the road to failure as a species 10,000 years ago with the invention of agriculture. We certainly jumped off the cliff 200 years ago when we figured out fossil fuels.

So it goes. As Mr. Carlin says the people are screwed, but the planet is fine.

There is really no reason to be too upset. The sun has another 4,000,000,000 years or so of fuel left before it goes red giant and melts the planet. Lots of interesting critters will evolve and go extinct during that time blissfully unaware that humanity ever existed. I'd be amazed if we have another 1,000 years before we take up our place in the fossil record.

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