Academics have found status in a system that rewards a political agenda. Their fantasies would evaporate if they had to face reality.
Politics never interested me until a wave of shark attacks happened on my local beach in Ballina next to the mouth in 2015 and 2016.
Two of these attacks happened while I was surfing, one right in front of me. Over a two-year period, twelve shark attacks occurred along a 70 kilometer coastal strip, eight within ten kilometers of Ballina, four within a kilometer of the river mouth. Two of the attacks were fatal.
Needless to say, the surfing community was traumatized, but so was the community as a whole. The eerie sounds of ambulances and helicopters haunted the coastal strip, as reporters and film crews kept the story in the headlines.
Just like the pandemic, we spent two years talking about nothing else. It was hard to keep surfing. But, with so few people braving the ocean, it was hard to resist the temptation.
A sense of camaraderie developed among the local surfers, partly because we were having so much fun surfing uncrowded waves, and partly because one of us might suddenly need help joining the shore.
As far as I know, I was the only one using an expensive and bulky tool electrical appliance mounted on my board to deter sharks. Others painted their boards with stripes to look like poisonous sea serpents. While most surfed without any form of deterrence, everyone stuck together, feeling more secure in numbers.
A team of scientists have predicted that the rate of shark attacks in Australia will continue to rise over the next two decades, before gradually declining at the same rate as today by the year 2066.
When I asked lead author Corey Bradshaw why he predicted human-shark interactions would follow this pattern, he replied, “It’s in the paper – long-term fluctuations in climate patterns in the ‘ocean. Exact mechanism? Uncertain.”
So I tried again.
“Thank you. But, if you can’t identify the exact mechanism, how could you be sure that your modeling reflects reality? I have no doubt about the gradual increase described over the next decade, since both populations increase But why wouldn’t it continue to increase indefinitely?It seems unlikely that the attack rate will decrease, as you predict.
The conversation ended there. He’s a busy man with a great vision of humanity.
In another recent article, he proposes “systemic change in the way humanity functions and interacts with nature”, including “major reductions in meat consumption”.
According to his modelling, around 1,800 people could fall victim to a shark attack in Australia over the next 45 years. But, if his guess is incorrect and the attack rate continues to increase at the current rate, there will be 800 more casualties. This means that the number of attacks in 2066 will be more than double its prediction for that year.
How many tragedies have to happen before someone in power finally says enough is enough? The government body tasked with reducing the rate of shark attacks has rolled out a series of measures, which is elaborate and expensive, but does little to solve the problem. For them, reducing the shark population is not an option.
You really have to wonder if they care more about sharks than people. If so, then the problem is the anti-human agenda of environmentalism.
Despite being a world renowned ethicist, whose seminal work inspired the animal rights movement, Peter Singer has managed to avoid the shark debate raging in his home country, without even appearing at a Senate inquiry into the issue. He’s the guy who spent his whole life rationalizing values to suit the greater good, only to change his mind when faced with the uncomfortable decision of his mother’s passing, finally conceding that “Maybe it’s harder than I thought before, because it’s different when it’s your mom.”
I suppose that is the problem of many intellectuals. Seduced by the rational mind, they lose touch with their humanity.
This problem is also evident among surf academics, whose devotion to nature provides a convenient distraction from the messy affairs of real life. For example, Rebecca Olive sees the risk of shark attack through the lens of eco-feminism, which she says “questions the supposed authority of humans over…all non-human elements that make up worlds. in which we live”. She admits to being afraid of sharks, but feels that feeling vulnerable evokes a deep sense of connection with nature.
When I saw two young surfers rowing straight towards their friend after he was attacked by a shark, I thought men had been protecting themselves like this since time immemorial.
The bravery shown by these boys had more to do with nature than with any worldview invented by eco-feminists. It is human nature to protect the clan.
These academics have found status in a system that rewards a political program and punishes opposition.
They rarely face pushbacks.
Their complacent fantasies would evaporate if they had to face reality.
How many privileges do they take for granted?
It is despicable that the most privileged people who have ever lived are so determined to destroy the very culture that sustains them.
But, they have been programmed to think in a certain way, which subordinates not only the individual to the group, but humanity to the environment.
They are the “useful idiots” carrying the Trojan horse of socialism disguised as identity politics and environmentalism.