[lit-ideas] 11th Hour

  • From: "Paul Stone" <pastone@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 13 May 2008 14:30:02 -0400

I don't know if this went through the first time -- my apologies if it did.

Okay, so last night, I took Andy's advice (like I always do) and
checked out this little film by the actor who played Luke Brower.


1)  the title is poorly chosen: It should be "the 12th Hour" to make
any sense of urgency potent. This is a portent of the lack of any real
"science" in the movie, that is, it's poorly thought out.

2) It's another emotionally overwrought, supercharged heart-string
puller. Pictures of penguins and polar bears diving into the water,
and even a baby-seal getting clubbed -- what these have to do with
"global warming" I have no idea. Environment, PETA etc, but cliimate
changes? geddoudaheah!

3) The concentration on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina is
completely misplaced. Katrina had very little to do with climate
change and everything to do with the American Government abandoning a
very susceptible, below-sea-level development before and after a
completely normal and anticipated tropical storm.

4) Almost all of the people in the film were not primarily scientists.
Their commonality was that they were authors. Yes, they had ole
Stephen Hawking in his chair stairing out into space while his little
voice-box did the talking, but he said little controversial or
ground-breaking. In short, he allowed them to USE him because of his
name. They had David Suzuki (a complete hack) and a few other degreed
scientists, but they had very few actual experts in anything other
than rhetoric: a talk-show host, a few hipster science teachers,
entrepreneurs etc.

5) Since a lot of authors were there, the film tended to use THEIR
lingo when talking about each little segment. So the loaded words and
made up terms were used without any real definition OR substantiation
of the tendentious sloganism when they were given. This came back to
bite them in the ass in their final argument -- I'll explain later.


1) They had very effective arguments and displays of how overpopulated
the Earth is. They stressed this time and time again and this is a
much bigger problem than climate change.

2) They also talked a lot about how the Earth would be fine and we
were a just a parasite that couldn't kill it. That was very refreshing
to have many of these people say this. I also like the fact that they
had a very multi-cultural cast of characters, especially some native
american/canadians who view the Earth in a very different light.

3) I love it that they brought Jerry Mander in. I love his ideas,
however paranoid they sound, they are largely accurate. I also
especially liked Thom Hartmann --  weirdly, he's a radio-host, but he
sounded the most logical, unemotional, and yet firm of the whole
bunch. If you took an interview with just him and a few others from
this film, it would be a lot more 'convincing'.

4) At the 49 minute mark, the movie started to seem legitimate, until,
as I stated above, the very end when they bit themselves in the ass in
a logical inconsistency.

All in all, not a terrible film, but pretty loaded for the masses. And
shots of Leo all over the world spouting 'wisdom' really did nothing
to further the cause. I hate David Suzuki, but he seemed more genuine
than pretty boy.

Unintentional Hilarity:

Paul Stamets thinks we can cure the Earth with mushrooms
(mycofiltration). I think he's done a few too many mushrooms.

So... the inconsistency...

In the early part of the film, they had an interview with someone who
had written a book about stored energy vs. daily energy. I can't
remember his terms exactly -- something like "ancient carbon".
Basically, the premise was that the Earth has a holding capacity of
approximately 1 billion people -- if you don't mine the stored energy
of the Earth - exactly what is WRONG with that, I'm not quite sure,
but...: that is, if you use the Sun's daily deliverable sources.

But, at the end of film, they had let this notion go and demonstrated
how you could get all kinds of energy out of the sun to sustain
whatever population we had. Again, I see they've ignored what will
happen if we start taking billions of megawatts of energy out of the
sun/wind etc. You think that greenhouse gases are bad? They should
have re-inforced the fact that the ONLY possibility is for the
population to get smaller. If we don't take steps to do that, the
problem will take care of itself. It's too bad they were so bound by
their tenor.

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