Human Exceptionalism

Don’t “Earth Hour:” Celebrate Electricity!

Electricity has done more good for humanity than, perhaps, any other technological advance.  Water is purified. Homes are lit and heated. Industry hums. Hospital technology saves lives.

But today is Earth Hour, an annual event that treats our electrified world as an enemy of the planet, urging the meaningless and pain-free gesture that we all turn off unessential illumination and unplug appliances for one hour, once a year.

Pointless, but it does carry a subversive message.  From my book, The War on Humans:

I read a column by Ross McKitrick in the Vancouver Sun, and realized that the message–if not the explicit intent–of Earth Hour is profoundly destructive. From the article:

The whole mentality around Earth Hour demonizes electricity… Earth Hour celebrates ignorance, poverty and backwardness. By repudiating the greatest engine of liberation it becomes an hour devoted to anti-humanism. It encourages the sanctimonious gesture of turning off trivial appliances for a trivial amount of time, in deference to some ill-defined abstraction called “the Earth,” all the while hypocritically retaining the real benefits of continuous, reliable electricity.

People who see virtue in doing without electricity should shut off their fridge, stove, microwave, computer, water heater, lights, TV and all other appliances for a month, not an hour. And pop down to the cardiac unit at the hospital and shut the power off there too.

Some might say, “But Wesley, Earth Hour is only about publicizing the need to be efficient with energy use.” Perhaps, but I think McKitrich is onto something…

Indeed, look at the name, “Earth Hour.” The message is not subtle: Technology is the enemy of the earth and must be severely curtailed in order to “save the planet”​

If we turned against electricity and technology, the harm to humanity would not be quantifiable. 

It may be a cliche, but it is still true. Everyday is Earth Day in North Korea.

Me? Like McKitrick, I’m keeping my lights on.

Most Popular


Stick a Fork in O’Rourke

If, as I wrote last week here, Joe Biden may save the Democratic party from a horrible debacle at the polls next year, Beto O’Rourke may be doing the whole process a good turn now. Biden, despite his efforts to masquerade as the vanguard of what is now called progressivism, is politically sane and, if ... Read More

Ivy-League Schools Wither

A  number of liberal bastions are daily being hammered — especially the elite university and Silicon Valley. A Yale and a Stanford, or Facebook and Google, assume — for the most part rightly — that each is so loudly progressive that the public, federal and state regulators, and politicians would of ... Read More

In Defense of the Electoral College

Senator Elizabeth Warren has joined a growing chorus within the Democratic party in calling for the abolition of the Electoral College. Speaking at a forum in Mississippi on Monday night, Warren said that she hoped to ensure that “every vote matters” and proposed that “the way we can make that happen is ... Read More