MYOFB

One snippet of news that appeared after the Plane Stupid protest at Stansted is that the boss of Lush – a chain of shops selling ethically sourced soaps, shampoos and bath stuff – donates some of his chain’s profits and some of his own income to the direct action organisation.

That doesn’t bother me – and if I did buy any Lush products, which I don’t, it wouldn’t stop me from continuing to do so.

However, what does bother me is what he says about the recent action:

Mr Constantine said it was unfortunate that people were disrupted, and that he would not condone illegal activity.

“However, something needs to be done about climate change,” he said.

He added that as Plane Stupid “are trying to look after us, someone has to look after them”.

I don’t recall ever being asked if I needed looking after in the first place.

Do we really need any more people looking after us?

We already have an interfering, snooping, patronising nanny state and it would be great¬† if other people could keep their fucking noses out of people’s business until invited.

It would have been too easy to call this entry ‘Plain Stupid’ so I won’t

Time for another confession.

I’m not incredibly taken with the climate change lobby.

It strikes me that it’s just too simplistic to attribute the changing climate to one factor – carbon emissions – when the weather itself is such a complex system. It doesn’t make sense to me on a scientific level.

What I do agree with, however, is that we shouldn’t waste this planet’s limited resources, so I guess that the campaigners and I are probably going to achieve the same ends in the long run.

Which brings me to this.

The climate action group Plane Stupid organised a protest at Stansted today – forcing dozens of flights to be cancelled and thousands of passengers consequently stranded at the airport.

Several thoughts and questions occur to me…

What chronic lack of security allowed nearly 60 protesters into a secure area along with concrete blocks and their own security fencing?

Isn’t it irresponsible to ‘test’ security in this way post 9/11?

Why did it take 5 hours to clear the runway and then arrest 57 people?

Why does Plane Stupid think that by inconveniencing people and disrupting their travel plans that those same people are going to support their cause?

Surely you need Joe Public on your side if you’re going to bring about any change in the government’s policies or the airports’ and airlines’ operating procedures?

Why alienate those you really need on your side?

Is the British public ever likely to respond to such ‘direct action’ methods?

To be honest, I don’t think they’ve ever been or ever will be the cause of any sympathetic resonance within the national psyche, added to which our political system doesn’t have a fast response time when it comes to public pressure. The gears of government rotate and engage very slowly.

To put it bluntly, all I think that Plane Stupid have done is to piss off a bunch of ordinary people that just wanted to get on with their journeys and didn’t get the message at all.

Perhaps their cause is a good one – it’s certainly one which a great many people share – but their methods really stink.

I suppose that what really irritates me – not being affected by the protest –¬† is crap like this from one of the protesters:

“We’re afraid of what the police might do to us, we’re afraid of going to jail but nothing scares us as much as the threat of runaway climate change.”

Afraid of the police FFS?

This isn’t China, Zimbabwe or Burma!

They’re not going to be beaten up or have electrodes attached to their genitalia and then after a show trial get lashed to a stake in front of a firing squad.

No, it’ll be a court appearance – maybe – and if so, maybe a small fine or some community service. Odds are that they’ll just be cautioned with maybe one or two people facing a criminal damage charge. Talk about self-delusion…

The fact that they can protest without any harsh penalty says more about the continued tolerance of our society than it does about their own.

Meanwhile Plane Stupid has apologised to passengers for the disruption.

Oh, that’s OK then…

Lest it be said that I’m just ranting and not putting forward any constructive ideas, how about this?

One medium haul flight alone emits about 700 tons of CO2, so how about stopping the empty and half empty flights that the major airlines have to schedule so that their slots stay open at the airports?

Legislate against this and then leave Aunty Aggie to fly to visit her daughter in Dublin in peace.

There, sorted.