Delingpole: ‘I Don’t Think People Should Fly Just For the Hell of It,’ Sir David Attenborough Greensplains

British naturalist, documentary maker and broadcaster David Attenborough delivers a speech after receiving a Crystal Award during a ceremony ahead of the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2019 annual meeting, on January 21, 2019 in Davos, eastern Switzerland. (Photo by Fabrice COFFRINI / AFP) (Photo credit should read FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images)
Getty Images

“I don’t think people should fly just for the hell of it,” says veteran wildlife documentary maker Sir David Attenborough.

Like so much of what this reverend Malthusian says about the environment, it sounds superficially sweet and reasonable. But scratch the surface — and it’s why we talk about eco-fascism — and what you find is something really rather oppressive, authoritarian and sinister.

Let’s just pause, for a moment, and consider what on earth Attenborough can possibly mean by this phrase ‘fly just for the hell of it.’

Business trips? But no one goes on business trips any more unless they absolutely have to because companies are so increasingly stingy with their travel budgets.

Visits to see family overseas? Well, sure, there’s Skype but it seems pretty legit when, like me, you’ve got kids living thousands of miles away to want to see them for real now and again.

Holidays abroad? Some of us are old enough to remember the once widespread notion that ‘travel broadens the mind’. Is there some new rule, now, that in fact the only acceptable way of being a decent global citizen is to stay resolutely within the borders of whatever continent you inhabit?

The truth about modern air travel, surely, is that it’s so totally unglamorous — the security rigmarole, the increasingly disgusting airline food, the fight for space in the overhead lockers, the protests and delays — that no one in their right mind books a flight ‘just for the hell of it.’

You only buy an air ticket once you’ve exhausted all the options: when you realise, for example, that, ‘If I don’t book us a decent foreign holiday this summer my wife will divorce me.’ And there’s really nothing weird or extreme about this. This is how normal people think and behave because what, after all, is the point of living at this advanced stage of Western Civilisation if we can’t all enjoy the fruits of increased leisure time, disposable income and aviation technology?

Yet somewhere within those categories — Attenborough believes, in the manner of a Witchfinder General who just knows, against all evidence, that ‘here be witches’ — lurk a plethora of selfish, thoughtless, planet-destroying malefactors who are racking up their air miles for the sheer damned hell of it.

This ‘Do I say, not do as I do’ attitude is all too prevalent among our global elite. See also: Al Gore; Leo DiCaprio; the Prince of Wales, and his two chips-off-the-old-block sons William and Harry — all of whom see no problem whatsoever with flying wherever and whenever they want, even as they lecture their presumed inferiors that air travel is simply no longer acceptable an activity for the ‘little people.’

There’s only one thing I find more disgusting than the arrogance and pomposity and presumption of these nauseating, Eco-Wankerati types…

And that’s the fawning, largely uncritical adulation they get from the mainstream media.

That Attenborough interview, for example, appeared in the Daily Telegraph – and really should have come with a health advisory: Do not attempt to read unless you have a sick bag handy.

We learned, for example, that ‘in recent years, Sir David has gained messiah status among the young.’

Demand for tickets to an early screening of Seven Worlds, One Planet last week officially outstripped that of Glastonbury. Earlier this year, at the aforementioned festival, Sir David made a surprise appearance on stage to promote the new series and was cheered like a rock god.

(‘Wow! Just wow!’, as the kids say. Sarcastically)

We learned that Sir David thinks his programmes are just amazing:

 “These programmes get huge audiences and they are not just entertainment. It’s stuff that is beautiful, lovely and enriching.”

We learned that one of the ways Sir David’s BBC wildlife crews save the planet — resulting in a ‘huge amount of carbon saved’ — is by filming aerial shots with drones instead of helicopters.

Gosh, silly me. And there was I, naively thinking that the reason TV documentary crews use drones not helicopters is because it shaves two or three 0s off the aerial photography budget…

Strangely absent from this interview was anything that might have challenged Attenborough’s status as just about the closest thing white male privilege has ever produced to rank with Nelson Mandela.

No mention, for example, of the numerous factual inaccuracies in his scaremongering claims about the environment.

No mention of the embarrassing possibility that it was his wildlife film crew — and not ‘climate change’ — which drove those walruses over a cliff to their deaths. Walrusgate, as it’s known.

No questioning of the way that by jumping so wholeheartedly onto the left-leaning environmentalist bandwagon he has rendered his lavishly photographed nature documentaries all but unwatchable for that half of the world which doesn’t buy into the greenie scare narrative.

This has the unfortunate — and deeply unfair — effect of making those few of us who do point this stuff out look like nasty, griping curmudgeons:

But we’re being badly let down here.

How can it be healthy that someone like Attenborough is elevated to a position where he can spout dubious green propaganda on television across the world without ever being challenged or held to account except by a few mavericks in the blogosphere and at rebel outlets like Breitbart?

How can it be right that our mainstream media now indulges such hypocrisy? Last time I looked, the Daily Telegraph had a brilliant travel section, probably one of the most lavish and varied and, in terms of advertising, lucrative anywhere in the world.

Are we to understand that now that its readers — in line with their Green God Sir David’s views — are so properly appalled by all forms of ‘unnecessary’ air travel that they won’t even think about going abroad any more and that thus the Telegraph‘s travel section will be scrapped?

Or is it possible, perhaps, that our mainstream media is helping to foster perhaps the biggest lie in the entirety of our civilisation: that on the one hand consumption and travel and economic growth are things we must learn to forego because as St Greta and St David tell us man-made climate change is killing the planet; while, on the other, that consumption and travel and economic growth are really great and the things that make life worth living and help give us a better future for our children.

They can’t both be simultaneously true, can they?

How depressing it is that so few of us are either honest enough to admit it or informed enough to understand it!

.

Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.