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article imageOp-Ed: Beijing’s ‘crazy bad’ air, 3.2 million deaths and global apathy

By Paul Wallis     Jan 12, 2013 in Environment
Sydney - Beijing’s air pollution went off the scale recently. It was 8.5 times higher than WHO danger levels. Citizens were advised to avoid exercise, and that was it for health responses. 3.2 million people died of air pollution in Asia in 2010. Result? Apathy.
This is not going to be a pleasant article. It’s not going to be friendly, either. The last two generations of conformist, zero personality kids and their moronic, pathetic, socially inactive slave parents deserve as much credit as mainstream media for allowing massive increases in pollution to go absolutely unchallenged. Only those with truly subhuman intellects and no guts at all could blithely get born, raise kids and die in a corrupt, toxic soup without protest.
The Beijing story is a good indicator of the global situation. It’s always fascinated me how people fully aware of the long-running super-smog over Asia could then turn around and say this filthy air has no effect on global climate. Perhaps air pollution “just blows away”, as one of the stupidest people I’ve ever met decided it does? These chemicals don’t fit the organic breakdown cycles at all, yet we even have scientists claiming they do?
60 years after the UK passed the Clean Air Act in response to similar heavy levels of pollution, and decades after LA became the smog capital of the world for a generation, there’s still no acknowledgement that smog, pollution and greenhouse are the same things? Massive spikes in airborne carcinogens don’t mean a thing? A global rise in asthma to epidemic levels from almost non-existent means nothing?
Global mercury pollution in the top layer of the oceans has doubled in the last 100 years, according to the UN. Action? Nil. Not a damn thing. Squat.
Again, all that mercury in seafood just isn't a problem. There's no safe level of exposure to mercury, but what the hey, it's all food, isn't it? Cretins.
Baseline surveys of economic activities and pollution show that where there’s big money, there’s lots of pollution. Pay to get poisoned. This is suburbia at work, the middle class Nirvana, or as those of us who can remember what fresh air felt like call it, humanity’s self-inflicted hell.
If the last two generations have been totally ineffectual, so have the fecal-minded vermin they’ve elected as social leaders. Pollution is not an issue. In Australia, we introduced the very ineptly-named carbon tax, which should have been called what it is, a pollution tax. The result was astonishing. Instead of realizing that cutting emissions would exempt them from the tax, industry “leaders” wailed about the tax being anti-business. All they had to do was install modern filters, quite cheap, but no, they wanted to pay the tax instead and whine about the unfairness of it all.
It’s hilarious, in a rather disgusting way, to see the huge emphasis placed on people quitting smoking, with billions of tons of deadly industrial and vehicle pollutants sailing majestically into the lungs of the entire global population. Yep, to paraphrase one of our endless Australian anti-smoking ads, “Every million tons of pollution is doing you damage”.
The fact that in the pre-heavy pollution era everyone smoked and none of the epidemiological effects attributed to smoking occurred at anything like the same rates is also interesting. Smoking is bad, but inhaling 98% of the entire Table of Elements and compounds every day isn’t?
The fact appears to be that epidemiology is the least effective of all health-related studies. It’s a spectator sport, not a discipline, and definitely not taken seriously by governments for the last 40 years.
Even more amusing are the protests of the anti-global warming stooges, soaking up carcinogens by the kilo while saying there’s no problem. People dropping dead from respiratory diseases, like 1.4 million a year in the US, according to the CDC, are mere coincidences. The fact that of those 1.4 million, more non-smokers than smokers, 1 million of them, died is also neither here nor there, in the smug world of pollution denial. Bearing in mind that in Western countries only about 20%-30% of people smoke, that doesn’t ring any bells?
Of course not. You don’t hear alarm bells if you’re not listening. You also don’t hear them if you’re pre-programmed to deny there’s a problem. Or thoughtfully dying of one of the chemical cocktails this alleged "air" contains.
This is a 2010 NASA map of PM 2.5, the 2.5 microgram particles which turned Beijing into a gas chamber. These particles can get into tissue and are considered extremely dangerous by all studies. The safe level is 80 parts per million, but as you can see from the map, these particles are everywhere. They’re not “blowing away”. They’re in Siberia, they’re in the Andes, they’re in the Australian outback and the global output is increasing.
You’ll also notice that China is in the top band. That “crazy bad” air day wasn’t 80 ppm. It was 845. That raises the question whether any of the pollution measures available are anything like accurate. They probably aren’t, if we’re looking at multiples of the top levels in a known high pollution area.
The solution?
The obvious answer to massive amounts of toxic chemicals is the same as global warming denial. Say there’s no problem, hope it goes away, and if it doesn’t reassure yourself with the fact that you’ll go away, sooner or later. Make squeaking noises about the irresponsibility of millions of people dying without consulting a polluter first to make sure they’re dying of non-income-threatening causes. Be a normal person with no opinions, no ideas and a total inability to make your own judgment.
Ignore the evidence of your senses, forget survival and focus on agreeing with whatever highly paid ignoramus says there’s no problem. Go to a few funerals to cheer yourself up. Ignore the chest pains, inability to concentrate and shortness of breath and think about how great it is to be part of a modern society full of such intelligent people.
Think how useful it is to know that you’re in an inter-glacial period where climate change is “normal” when you can’t breathe properly and have no energy. Don’t worry about the fact that for hundreds of millions of years Earth’s atmosphere was very different to now and probably will change again. The Earth and reality wouldn’t dare contradict humanity’s know-it-all mindsets, now would they?
Good luck, geniuses. You’re going to need it.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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