Saturday, December 19, 2009

Baby, Its Cold Outside

Much of the Canadian Prairies got a good blast of winter over the last week or so, with record low temperatures being set in various places. The -45C that we hit over night a few times was unseasonal for this area at this time of year, but certainly not unheard of. It seemed to make people forget that just prior to this cold snap, many places were posting some unseasonably high temperatures as well. But most interesting to me was the fact that this was the first time I have ever heard such a cold snap cause news stories which warned of strain to the electrical grid due to such a cold spell. I wonder what this means for January and February when we often get several weeks of such low temperatures. Although, I suppose it should be noted that the cold snaps do not usually cover such large areas.

Still, it seems to me that if certain parties had their way, much of Canada would be uninhabitable for 4-6 months of the year. The only thing that makes large portions of Canada inhabitable during a typically long winter, is the consumption of energy that is primarily available only from the burning of biomass or fossil fuel. Certainly there are ways to maximize use of wind or solar energy but this would require a MASSIVE redesigning and rebuilding of our homes, food production, business and infrastructure. I certainly feel that we should be moving toward this goal with all haste, but I do not think it makes much sense to blindly limit the potential for success in the endeavor by intensely limiting the resources which may be used.

I TOTALLY sympathize with frustration towards those unwilling to budge from the status quo but to those who are crying out for someone to come along who is strong enough to MAKE people do what is necessary, I ask you:

What will you do when you're told where to live, what to do with your time at all times, how many children you may or may not have, what you may wear, etc etc, in the name of preserving the future?

That is what is being asked for when one demands the right to inflict their will on another. At that point, the only hope is that the chosen dictator is able to do the seemingly remain totally benevolent.

So do I then support the absolute right of the individual over the society, or the whole?
Well, of course I do not, but surely we can find a way to balance the individual and the society. That is not to deny the fact that this is an intensely complex situation. We MUST figure it out though. We're at such an important crossroad, both for Mother Earth and for humankind. I can't help but feel that simple survival just isn't enough. I can't help but feel that we must live for something.

I live for peace and comfort, for myself and for all. Happy Solstice and Merry Christmas, if I am not back before then.


MoonRaven said...

Brrr... I've felt cold enough when the temperature here was in the teens. I hope that you are able to stay warm.

And I couldn't agree more with your plea: "I can't help but feel that simple survival just isn't enough. I can't help but feel that we must live for something." May you find that peace and comfort you seek, just as I wish it, along with love an healing, for everyone. Happy Solstice and Merry Christmas to you...

linda said...

Its a complex situation but this is also a very complex post.

I don't think we have a choice but to balance the rights of the individual within the rights of a society. I'm not sure that this can or will happen.
I tend to think that if we sit around waiting for a "savior" then we get what we ask for and then some. Its in the individual actions that we can produce viable change. We had a savior quite recently in Obama and look what came of that. Will people ever learn?

What I live for is my children. All that I do today, is to ensure that they survive and have a chance to thrive in an uncertain future. I have been preparing them for years. I pretty much do everything intentionally.....
However, what I do seemingly selfishly, affects society or at least has the potential to affect it in positive ways. I don't take my position lightly or in isolation of the family unit in other words. That is the best balance I can find at the moment.
Happy Holidays Jerry.

Conny said...

Not checking in here to add my two cents, but only to say Happy Soltice (today) and a very Merry Christmas (on Friday). Thanks for piping in on my blog this year. Cheers ~ Conny

Theresa said...

The best of the Season to you and yours SBT! Thanks for your thoughtful comments and contributions to my blog over the past couple of years - I always appreciated your considered commentary. Blessings in 2010.

Jerry said...

Thank you all very much for your comments and wishes!

Anna said...

Does this mean that in Canada they limit the supply of electricity purposefully, or am I reading it wrong? It seems like a better way to get people to cut back would be to raise prices. Then folks would have an incentive to become more efficient and use less.

We just went two weeks without electricity, and boy were we glad to get the lights back on! Still, it made us think that we need to be more independent of the grid.