|The Promised Pic : Grandson Gear, 11 days old.|
However two recent visitors to Australia, both called Bill and both from the USA have given me some hope - Bill Gates was talking about philanthropy and world poverty, and Bill McKibben was talking about climate change and carbon pollution. (Click here to see Bill McKibben interview)These two topics are important to me because I believe that in the West we already have enough "stuff" and should be looking at ways to help the billions who dont yet, and linked with that is the damage we are doing to the planet with Carbon Pollution.
Yesterday, listening to the radio, to the BBC, I gained a minor insight into the way we behave from some social scientists who were discussing the ethics of advertising. They mentioned something I see a lot, a notice in the bathroom of Hotels that tries to persuade us to re-use our towels rather than get fresh ones every day. These Notices usually mention Pollution by detergents, but the Social Scientists experiments showed that a more effective strategy is to also mention the proportion of people who reuse the towels - if the number is high, more people reuse the towels than when the number is low. This tendency to follow the crowd and do and believe what everyone else seems to do and believe is a fundamental of human behaviour with obvious positive evolutionary implications.
Given this fundamental of human behaviour I hope more people like the two Bills will stand up and be seen advocating for something other than endless, mindless and pointless "Economic Growth" and all the associated degradation of the planet. If more do, then there is hope for change but otherwise I really do feel frightened at the prospect of what our little Gear is going to be faced with when he grows up.
|In Melbourne we also visited "Monet's Garden" Exhibition - such beautiful works!|