A State of Denial

Are we eye witnesses to history or is it simply fate which will carry us into oblivion? Driven by my daily observations of environmental impacts, I am inevitably drawn to the conclusion that our reward for our careless stewardship of a precious planet is reminiscent of 79 AD. Lest the date escapes us it is the day in which historian’s describe the fall of Pompeii as ‘The Wrath of the Gods.’

On August 24, 79 AD. Mount Vesuvius literally blew its top, spewing tons of molten ash, pumice and sulfuric gas miles into the atmosphere. A ‘firestorm’ of poisonous vapours and molten debris engulfed the surrounding area suffocating the inhabitants of the neighboring Roman resort cities of Pompeii, Herculaneum and Stabiae. Tons of falling debris filled the streets until nothing remained to be seen of the once thriving communities. The cities remained buried and undiscovered for almost 1700 years.

And why would a marketing man find, or even care about the ragings of history or the prophetic warnings which the past so often offers us? Well that’s the point really.

Over the past 50 years I’ve been involved in a business which heeds the past and learns how to adapt to the lessons of failure so as to avoid the same catastrophic results for a second time.

We find new beginnings in failing and we learn from an alert proposition, which does not reside in a state of denial. And these heavy weight rules have been applied to such inconsequential contracts as selling things to people and swinging deals to achieve trading possibilities. They have called us strategically clever, persuaders who have conjoled and influenced the heavies to pay the big bucks to achieve unseemingly absurd profits and monster salaries.

So what? I hear you say. What’s your bitch?

Since 1880, the average temperature has risen by 1.4-Fahrenheit degrees. The Arctic ice is melting rapidly. By 2040 the region is expected to have a completely ice free summer, or even earlier. The Montana Glacier National Park has only 25 glaciers instead of 150 that were there in the year 1910. Sea levels have risen about 7 inches in the last 100 years, which is more than the previous 2000 years combined.

Around 100 million people live within 3 feet of sea level and many cities of the world are located near such vulnerable coastal areas. Global warming is causing extreme weather changes which are exemplified by way of forest fires, heat waves and severe tropical storms which occur throughout the world. Between 2000-2100, heat related deaths will rise by 150,000.

And you want to know what’s my bitch?

My bitch is that we’re talking not acting, we’re listening to the economics instead of with our hearts and we are in an absolute state of denial.

On ABC’s Q&A recently, One Nation’s, Senator Malcom Roberts verbally sparred with physicist Professor Brian Cox after claiming the earth stopped warming in 1995 and there was “no empirical evidence” to prove otherwise.

What’s my bitch? This is an Australian Senator for God’s sake, arguing with one of the world’s most respected Physicists. My friends we are in deep trouble. And what can we do? As a strategic thinker, I’m out of ideas, I’m admitting defeat and I’m saying it here in the hope that someone listens. We like the citizens of Pompeii can revel in our gold coins and build great edifaces to the sky, but the planet is rumbling and if we fiddle we will most certainly burn.