Rich Tucker

It really may be impossible to mock liberals. No matter how absurd a proposal seems, a liberal can always pretend it’s serious and even take it one step further.

Say all human beings agreed to leave the planet by blasting themselves into space. Environmentalists would complain that the rocket they left in was damaging the planet with its toxic emissions.

Luckily for libs, though, author Alan Weisman has come up with a neater way for us to leave the planet. Not with a bang, but with a whimper. And that whimper would be the sound of billions of people around the world choosing not to procreate. His book is called “The World Without Us,” and Slate magazine calls it a “strangely comforting vision of human annihilation.”

Comforting? Speak for yourself. I kind of like it here.

Oh, but things will just get better and better when we’re gone, the book claims.

“Nature lovers can take solace in the idea that the planet will thrive once we’ve finally destroyed ourselves with global warming,” Daniel Engber writes in Slate. “Freshwater floods would course through the New York subway system, ailanthus roots would heave up sidewalks and a parade of coyotes, bears and deer would eventually trot across the George Washington Bridge and repopulate Manhattan.”

Two observations here: If it’s such a great idea to pump water through the subways, why are we fighting global warming? We ought to be speeding it up to raise ocean levels and inundate our costal cities so much more quickly. Also, who’s going to maintain the George Washington Bridge so the animals can stroll across it? As we saw in Minnesota, even the bridges we humans are actively trying to maintain sometimes collapse. Surely they’d all fall apart pretty quickly if we weren’t around to repair them.

The Slate piece starts with the assumption that greenhouse gasses will destroy humanity. If that’s true, the first thing to do would be to kill all the cows. After all, as a U.N. report last year noted, “Cattle-rearing generates more global warming greenhouse gases, as measured in CO2 equivalent, than transportation.”

But the Slate story misses the implications of its own observations. “Our kids won’t spew as much greenhouse gas as we do—automobiles, appliances, light bulbs, and everything else will become more efficient in coming generations,” Daniel Engber writes in passing.

Rich Tucker

Rich Tucker is a communications professional and a columnist for