Big Picture News, Informed Analysis

This blog is written by Canadian journalist Donna Laframboise. Posts appear Monday, Wednesday & Friday.

David Suzuki’s Actions Speak Louder Than His Words

SPOTLIGHT: Talk is cheap.

BIG PICTURE: David Suzuki is Canada’s version of Al Gore. While being paid from the public purse for decades, via CBC radio and television, he’s done a great deal of scolding. The end is near, environmental apocalypse is upon us, change your ways before it’s too late.

Now that the University of Alberta has announced its intention to bestow an honorary doctor of science degree on Suzuki, some of us are being reminded that there’s a large gap between this man’s words and his deeds.

Suzuki has long considered the planet over-populated. In his 1991 book, It’s a Matter of Survival, he insisted: “there are too many of us; we consume too much; we pollute too much…” Yet as his autobiography reveals, he himself has fathered five children. None were adopted. None are step-kids.

Suzuki is also opposed to economic growth. He thinks it absurd that our economic system relies on “endless growth.” Which makes it strange, indeed, that the David Suzuki Foundation, which began as a one person labour of love, currently has offices in three Canadian cities and employs scores of people.

Which brings me to a sly passage in Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s latest book, Skin in the Game. It reads:

I was recently told that a famous Canadian environmentalist, with whom I was part of a lecture series, abused waiters in restaurants, between lectures on equity, diversity, and fairness.

Gee, I wonder to whom Taleb might be referring.

TOP TAKEAWAY: In his words, “If your private life conflicts with your intellectual opinion, it cancels your intellectual ideas, not your private life.”

LINKS:

Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life
Nassim Nicholas Taleb

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