Guest essay by Eric Worrall
New Statesman author Eleanor Penny believes she has worked out why rich people don’t appear to care about the imminent climate catastrophe.
Who gets to survive climate change?
19 March 2019
As the waters rise, the rich are readying their arks to escape oncoming environmental crisis.
In November, as wildfires ripped through California, Kim Kardashian hired a squad of private firefighters to protect her $50m estate in Calabasas. During the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Blackwater security guardsdefended the houses of the hyper rich against feared hordes of looters while their occupants were quietly helicoptered to safety.
Elsewhere, the hyper rich make plans to flee the planet altogether. From Elon Musk’s SpaceX programme to the would-be citizens of space-based micro nation Asgardia, venture capitalist space exploration is being packaged as humanity’s pioneering attempt to save itself from destruction.
These are not anomalies. Private insurance companies like AIG and Chubb have boasted about their increased provisions against the rapidly increasing numbers of natural disasters like wildfires. Others are scrambling to offset their exposureto the gathering effects of climate chaos. As the waters rise, the rich are readying their arks – quietly preparing themselves for climate chaos. If history teaches us anything, it’s that elites build their castles high above the filth.
At its root, elite denial isn’t a result of ignorance or suspended disbelief. Concentrated wealth warps perceptions of crisis and immunises elites against the practical and psychological threats of catastrophe. They are convinced of their own ability to survive the apocalypse: cataclysm is a preoccupation of the poor.
…Read more: https://www.newstatesman.com/world/2019/03/who-gets-survive-climate-change
My first thought was to make some wisecrack about hoping Anthony saves me a seat on the final evacuation mission to Asgardia, but I’m worried climate activists might take my joke seriously.