Umm, does he actually understand these words?

“Some people say we can adapt due to technology, but that’s a belief system, it’s not based on fact. There is no convincing evidence that a large mammal, with a core body temperature of 37C, will be able to evolve that quickly. Insects can, but humans can’t and that’s a problem.”

There’s a difference between “technology” and “evolve” matey. In fact, technology means that we don’t have to evolve to survive. That’s the very point that is being made in fact.

29 thoughts on “Umm, does he actually understand these words?”

  1. So Much for Subtlety

    In fact, technology means that we don’t have to evolve to survive.

    I don’t know about have to but we are in fact evolving. Technology just stops us evolving in a natural way. However our gene pool does change over time. For instance, people with genetic diseases that used to kill them now survive. They have children and so pass on genes that would not have been passed on before.

    Thus evolution. De-evolution if you like.

    The other good example would be that human brains are limited by the size of human heads. Human heads are limited by the size of the average woman’s pelvis. No longer do women die all that often in child birth meaning babies with larger heads survive – and have children in their turn. I expect in the future, as with turkeys, natural birth will be impossible for humans.

  2. From the comments, by the aptly-monikered Mr Glib:
    Yet we will carry on blindly.
    The upper and middle classes will go on holidays to places like Dubai that are environmental disaster zones. Carry on ferrying there children to private schools in huge Range Rovers.
    The planes and Lorries delivering food from all over the World etc etc etc.
    We’re stuck now in a doomsday scenario that continues to spiral towards catastrophe.
    Every child born now faces a future where there children will be left with dust.
    I think I’ll have that drink now.

    There seems to be a strong correlation between the quality of spelling, grammar, punctuation and syntax and the quality of the content.

  3. So much for subtlety, are you suggesting that humans are evolving into an egg-laying species?
    My own thoughts on evolutionary biology, in which I am something of an expert, are leading me to a similar conclusion. We must compare notes some time.

  4. Unsure of whether he is being sly or stupid here. Hard to believe he doesn’t understand the massive difference between ‘adapt’ and ‘evolve’.

    Not sure the readers will understand either, or care. It’s like the Mass in Latin for them – understanding the words does not matter, it’s the emotional experience which matters.

  5. Bloke no Longer in Austria

    As any fule kno, nigel molesworth had nailed the future of mankind in his seminal work Whizz for Attoms, in the chapter

    the Future: Or Oafs will be Oeufs

    Man will evolve into an egg-shaped creature with a huge brain and little arms and legs. The limbs will be completely useless and everyone will fly around using jet-packs.

  6. The article is such boiler-plate enviro-bilge it reads as if created by the Guardian’s MK 1 robot think-piece generator.

    Steve will be along in a minute t give it a proper going over. Prepare for a long post.

  7. Isn’t it wierd how a Guardian article on the way humanity is destroying the world seems to have the same understanding of evolution as an article promoting creationism would have?

    Anyway, surely if there was a global catastrophe of the type the Oliver Milman suggests is happening, humanity would evolve rapidly – those without suitable mutations would die, and the small number of more adapted survivors would breed with those mutations. Evolution under stress can happen (for broad characteristics) in a single generation…

  8. Humans are “eating away at our own life support systems” at a rate unseen in the past 10,000 years by degrading land and freshwater systems, emitting greenhouse gases and releasing vast amounts of agricultural chemicals into the environment, new research has found.

    Oh no! It’s Worse Than We Thought!

    Of nine worldwide processes that underpin life on Earth, four have exceeded “safe” levels – human-driven climate change, loss of biosphere integrity, land system change and the high level of phosphorus and nitrogen flowing into the oceans due to fertiliser use.

    I have no idea what “loss of biosphere integrity” is, but I do know that “human-driven climate change” has, after decades of money being thrown at studying it, turned out to be more or less impossible to detect in the real world.

    So any purported measure on the state of the planet which warns us that “human-driven climate change” is a serious threat is bollocks.

    They found that the changes of the last 60 years are unprecedented in the previous 10,000 years, a period in which the world has had a relatively stable climate and human civilisation has advanced significantly.

    What major climate change happened just a wee bit before 10,000 years ago?

    Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

    That’s right: the end of the last ice age. Which, by the way, had lasted approximately 100,000 years – or ten times the period our intrepid researchers have used as their “baseline”.

    And why did the glaciers melt, boys and girls? Was it because of wicked Fred Flintstone, selfishly driving around his new fossil fuelled car?

    No, it was due to naturally occurring global warming.

    Carbon dioxide levels, at 395.5 parts per million, are at historic highs,

    395.5 ppm is 0.03955%

    So a trace gas is slightly more abundant than it used to be.

    And yet – contrary to the GREENHOUSE GAS scare, the Earth isn’t getting measurably warmer.

    And, by the way, this is a “historic” high only if you ignore the fact that CO2 was apparently ten times higher in atmospheric concentration when the dinosaurs roamed the earth.

    Guess what killed the dinosaurs? Not global warming.

    while loss of biosphere integrity is resulting in species becoming extinct at a rate more than 100 times faster than the previous norm.

    Is it fuck.

    Mass species extinction is another one of those stubborn memes that, cockroach-like, refuses to die. The greatest manmade extinction events happened when humans discovered Australia and the Americas, because we introduced new flora and fauna and hunted some species to death.

    We are not now, and are never likely to have the opportunity or desire to repeat those experiences. These claims of mass species extinction are based on computer models – not observation.

    Since 1950 urban populations have increased seven-fold,

    Yes. More people now live in urban relative-affluence compared to rural near-starvation. Problem?

    primary energy use has soared by a factor of five,

    Yes, more people enjoy the benefits of electricity and cars. You don’t like that? Fuck you.

    while the amount of fertiliser used is now eight times higher.

    Yes, we grow more food now so there’s less chance of people starving to death. Why does the Guardian want African babies to die?

    The amount of nitrogen entering the oceans has quadrupled.


    “These indicators have shot up since 1950 and there are no signs they are slowing down,” said Prof Will Steffen of the Australian National University and the Stockholm Resilience Centre. Steffen is the lead author on both of the studies.

    So they’re not really two independent studies at all. It’s the same man orchestrating them both. And who is Prof Will Steffen?

    Only Australia’s foremost climate doomsayer.

    Here he is saying exactly the same shit three years ago:

    So much for new research.

    And here’s his publication list:

    He’s made a career out of this shit.

    Asking Prof Will Steffen if “climate change” is a serious problem requiring us to urgently give more cash to “climate change” scientists is like asking if your dog wants steak.

    Says Steffi:

    When economic systems went into overdrive

    Aye, there’s the rub.

    Do we think that describing human beings moving beyond grinding poverty and the threat of famine as “economic systems in overdrive” is the mentality of a neutral boffin, calmly giving us just the facts?

    Or does this phrase betray a Watermelon – green on the outside, poison-red in the centre?

    Let’s hear more of Prof Steffi’s scientific thoughts before deciding.

    It’s clear the economic system is driving us towards an unsustainable future and people of my daughter’s generation will find it increasingly hard to survive,” he said.

    You heard it, folks. Mad Max Beyond the Thunderdome is coming to Australia in only 20-40 years.

    It’s SCIENCE!!!1

    “History has shown that civilisations have risen, stuck to their core values and then collapsed because they didn’t change. That’s where we are today.”

    And dafuq is this shit? That’s not how civilisations collapse, you fool! They’re more likely to collapse because they become weak and decadent, their elites lose touch with reality, and perhaps they start to become obsessed with bullshit fantasies, such as thinking they can control the weather…

    The two studies, published in Science and Anthropocene Review, featured the work of scientists from countries including the US, Sweden, Germany and India. The findings will be presented in seven seminars at the World Economic Forum in Davos, which takes place between 21 and 25 January.

    Everybody – the climate is fucked due to manmade CO2. LET’S ALL GET ON A PLANE TO SWITZERLAND!!!

  9. “Some people say we can adapt due to technology, but that’s a belief system, it’s not based on fact. There is no convincing evidence that a large mammal, with a core body temperature of 37C, will be able to evolve that quickly. Insects can, but humans can’t and that’s a problem.”

    To be fair, I think that’s just shoddy transcription. The way I read it, there should be a paragraph break after the first sentence. He’s saying two separate things there, not presenting one as evidence of the other.

    Which isn’t to say that he’s not talking bollocks. Thanks as ever to Steve for his usual levels of entertainment in pointing that out.

    One more thing, though:

    “If the Earth is going to move to a warmer state, 5-6C warmer, with no ice caps, it will do so”

    If it’s going to, it will? Gosh. Is that a scientific proof these days?

    And I thought the most alarmist of the alarmists were claiming the planet was going to heat up by about 2C. He’s saying 6? Blimey.

  10. To echo Bloke in France – Steve, that is a high quality fisking – the problem is it will make no difference to people like the author who are part of a doomsday cult of true believers, oblivious to any counter-argument, however well marshalled. I agree we’re headed to hell in a handcart, but more due to the activities of people like the author than any nebulous theory of Climate change….

  11. Comrades, thank you for coming today. I know you all have news organisations and government departments to run, but I think you will find what we have to say enlightening.

    As you know, in recent years, the Global Warming meme has served us very well. We now have large income streams online, and despite having to soft reboot the premise several times – many thanks to the Climate Change, Climate Disruption and Weird Weather sub-committees for their excellent work. But age catches up with all of us, and we have come to the end of Global Warming. Despite our best efforts evidence is emerging that is making it very difficult to ignore the reality that the planet isn’t warming – though special thanks to comrade Mann for his sterling work in this area.

    Anyway, the time has finally come meet the new meme which will replace Global Warming.

    Ladies and Gentlemen…
    (whisks curtain to one side to reveal…)


  12. bloke in france – Am I that predictable? 🙂

    Custard Cream – You are too kind. The global warming debate has become so ritualised that I can barely work myself up to the sort of keyboard-thrashing outrage it used to inspire in me.

    These days it’s more like when the Jehovas Witnesses come to the door. I’m more inclined to smile and nod till they go away.

    Don’t think I’d last ten minutes over at the Guardian. 🙂

    Andrew K – I’m making up a sign that says “Will write foam-flecked rants for food.”

    Squander Two – praise from Caesar.

    Van_Patten – yes, debate doesn’t work with True Believers. Especially the ones whose livelihoods and prestige depend on them being True Believers.

    Stuck-Record – meet the new crisis, same as the old crisis.

  13. seulmoi – Oh yes. I informed my nippers that they’re going to live in a nightmarish dystopian future akin to The-Hunger-Games meets-The-Omega-Man, and they’ll be eating Soylent Green before being herded into Carousel at the age of 30.

    And all because of economic growth in “overdrive” and Daddy driving a jeep.

    Little bastards didn’t care, they just wanted to watch Peppa Pig.

  14. Anthropocene (sic) Review?

    Probably not an august publication, having by definition only been on the newsstands since the end of the Holocene.

    But can anyone advise what is the difference between the editorial stance of Anthropocene Review and its sister magazine Misanthropocene Weekly?

  15. So Much for Subtlety

    Steve – “I informed my nippers that they’re going to live in a nightmarish dystopian future akin to The-Hunger-Games meets-The-Omega-Man, and they’ll be eating Soylent Green before being herded into Carousel at the age of 30.”

    Youngsters these days! Youngsters in *my*day* would have said “Casual sex with Jenny Agutter? Woo Hooo!!!!”

    The world is coming to an end I tell you.

  16. Steve

    “Guess what killed the dinosaurs? Not global warming.”

    Maybe it did. With CO2 levels ten times higher than a date millions of years into the future, perhaps the pointy headed dinosaurs convinced everyone to change to a collectivist, totalitarian agrarian dinosaur society and they all died of the starvation and endemic warfare which resulted?

  17. Rob
    What killed the dinosaurs was CONSUMERISM!
    (you know, dinosaurs eating stuff and stuff.)

    Thank God we’ve got all those diet books we got for Christmas to save us from such a fate!

  18. “”Youngsters these days! Youngsters in *my*day* would have ,….”
    wondering about aimlessly in a desert with Jenny Agutter Woo Hoo too”

  19. Bloke in Costa Rica

    It was with a sinking heart that I saw Keith Hudson’s monicker on a comment. “Oh fuck,” I thought, “he’s onto us.” Imagine my relief to find it was Steve arseing about.

  20. Thanks smithy, just read it.

    On balance I prefer Steve’s fisk of it. And it wasn’t even one of Steve’s best.

  21. Actually I am not Steve. I am actually a retired accountant from Wandsworth and internationally-venerated tax expert who for the moment chooses to work under a nom de guerre.

  22. So Much for Subtlety

    Hallowed Be – ““”Youngsters these days! Youngsters in *my*day* would have ,….”
    wondering about aimlessly in a desert with Jenny Agutter Woo Hoo too””

    I wouldn’t have been wondering aimlessly. Been adding to the War on Women statistics more like it.

    Anyway, I think we can all agree it is well worth eating a compressed Granny biscuit for.

  23. There is no convincing evidence that a large mammal, with a core body temperature of 37C, will be able to evolve that quickly. Insects can, but humans can’t and that’s a problem.”

    Uhm, evolve has nothing to do with body temperature and everything to due with the speed at which a species breeds.

    Why do people try to sound intelligent and yet fail to do a 30 second skim of a wikipedia article to see if there are any obvious holes in their statement?

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