Thursday, 26 February 2009

Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds

The title is a reference to a great book which everyone should have to read at school, the earlier the better.

I wrote a letter to the JEP last July, after the States originally voted for an incinerator, which started "It was a black day for a green sustainable future in the States". Yesterday was an even blacker day. The level of stupidity and incompetence on view was just incredible. A clear majority of our politicians are either incapable of rational judgement or they had such extreme pressure put on them, to save the face of the Council of Ministers, that they cravenly spouted the party line.

With even better arguments on the "alternatives to incinerators" side the "pro" incinerator vote was even stronger! Stuart Syvret's masterful exposition of the peak oil angle went completely over the heads of most.

What bothers me about Jersey politics is the extreme arrogance and self-belief of too many members - they heard arguments which, assuming they have basic English comprehension skills (dubious in some cases), meant that any rational caring politician ought to have had pause for thought and should have led to them checking out the powerful arguments for themselves. But what happened? These utter dunderheads are impervious to logic and science and reason and accountability. Their response to inconvenient truths is simply to look the other way and block their ears, or they prefer to listen to some wormtongue paid adviser and pretend that it has nothing to do with them and it is all somebody else's problem.

We even had Senator Sarah Ferguson coming right out of the closet and nailing her "global warming denier" colours to the mast! Who votes for these people? Please stop doing it!


Anonymous said...

Well, I voted for you Nick, twice in fact, but we ended up with a couple of accountants for deputies.
The level of pro-incinerator argument was pathetic, patronising and not even worthy of a school debating society.
This useless monster is really just "two fingers" to the people of Jersey and the environment from Guy de Faye. An appalling decision, a backward step, and yet another example of arrogant and self-serving government.

Nick Palmer said...

Thanks for the support. Maybe I'm being unfair by calling them dunderheads. Perhaps there are hidden factors, that people outside the States don't know about, which would explain their stance.

The trouble with this hypothesis is that, over the years, numbers of people *inside* the States have said much the same sort of thing about their colleagues.

In ten years time it will be seen as a disastrous decision and I have a standing £10 bet with Frank Walker that this will be so. Had Guy de Faye not signed the contract (two weeks before he got kicked out) I am pretty sure we could have had a far better, much cheaper, smaller and more flexible system that would not have compromised waste reduction, recycling and our carbon footprint anywhere near as much.