Who is mad: us or Vesuvius?

16:29 22.04.2010 • Armen Oganesyan , Editor-in-Chief, International Affairs

I do not know about you, but I am impressed with the European official. I admire and am morally crushed by his principles. Are you saying: "play it safe"? Of course. But after all, admit it, you were not personally touched by the princes of aviation’s "heroic" flights through volcanic clouds in empty airplanes... would you fly when you are losing tens of millions. When the European official would say, 'I will not allow you to! "And he must have known that he would have to experience for himself the effects of a fire-breathing lava of anger from the airline companies and consumer dissatisfaction, yet he persisted, even during the economic crisis. Bravo! I say this without irony. Here is just a question: how long will he remain in this noble pose defending not the interests but the lives of people?.. Would he not let himself down in front of our eyes? Because now, (from sharply reduced earnings) the hungry PR army will come down like a rock on top of these officials, who with a thermometer in their hands will prove that the temperature of the volcanoes in fact never rose above the "boiling point" of the minds of the "Brussels bureaucrats".


What, mind you, is characteristic: the eyes of the affected companies immediately turned to the government for support. Just like they always do. You may ask, "But what about the insurance companies?" My answer is: "When was the last time you saw mutual support, so to speak, horizontal support from business to business?" So they refused.  Because volcanoes are the hand of God not the hand of man, and insurance just covers the human factor. So where is the accident here? That is, if the plane went down ... well, you know, that would be a different matter.


Curiously, however, it is statistically interesting that the average European who responded to a question that he was asked by "Euronews" channel: "Does he agree that the state should compensate the air carriers for their losses?" The overwhelming majority voted in the negative. However, contrary to this view, I am sure the government will fork out, at the taxpayers’ expense, of course.


However, there was a moment when the heart trembled. When faith in the light of science at some point flashed a ray of hope. Of course, you remember the Daniil Granin novel "Going inside of a storm," and the film based on it. Just imagine that it is not the empty airliners of the biggest brands in Europe, but flying research laboratories with brave scientists on board that soar up into the sky and rush toward the terrible danger, financed, obviously, by the generous "aviation barons." With bated breath, glued to television screens, we are witnessing an act of self-sacrifice in the interests of humanity. Grateful tears fill the eyes of viewers around the world. The ratings of “CNN” and other global television networks soar to unprecedented heights, like the volcanic ash itself. During the live broadcast advertising is canceled. On the air can be heard scant words from brave pilots and phrases underlined with calm short commands from Earth. Excuse me; I seem to have got carried away...


Alas, all the accumulated human knowledge and all the positivism of our science proved powerless. In defense of the European official a sobering diagnosis was sounded: "We do not know." The leaders of the ESA and the professional association of pilots from 38 countries said that there is "no guarantee of safety, when volcanic ash is present in the atmosphere, even in small concentrations." Yes, in fact we really do not know anything, and even what we know, we have managed to turn against ourselves.


For example, we know that the airlines are the cause of huge amounts of CO2 emissions into the atmosphere, obviously not only them, but other human activities are not far behind them. This cannot but adversely affect the environment and climate on the planet. But how is it that scientists, and after them politicians, are not agreed on whether these factors will cause warming or cooling on the Earth? Imagine a council of doctors at the bedside of a critically ill poisoned man who, instead of eliminating the cause of the poisoning, open a scientific debate: will it lead to the death of the patient from low or high blood pressure?


It gives the impression that the deluge of words of concerns about the planet’s ecological trouble has been successfully neutralized by modern economism and pragmatism. No one wants to read aloud the "Black Book" of crimes by humanity against the Earth. They read the contents and walk away in silence. Meanwhile, Mother Earth is becoming a stepmother, from which we should expect any surprises.


The climate summit in Copenhagen, which almost bankrupted the idea of a worldwide campaign for the recovery of the planet, not only exposed our scientific failure, but also a scandalous degree of levity. If other alien civilizations exist, they would have gone mad, watching us.


Today it is becoming apparent that, due to human intervention, even the shaky and contradictory picture of nature’s cycles and the most fundamental laws of its habitat are being disturbed. All of us are to blame for this new imbalance; after all, the "inhuman" attitude to nature is only the visible tip of the iceberg of our moral degradation. And it is only this visible part that speaks to us in a loud voice.


"And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said to him," Teacher! Rebuke your disciples.” But he said to them in reply, "I tell you, if these were silent, the stones would immediately cry out." And they cried.


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