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Reverend Billy’s Revelations

Issue 284

The oil zombies gathered for their annual meeting, aka COP-28.

Reverend Billy Talen Dec 20, 2023

Dear Rev,

The new climate agreement in Dubai. They say that there is hope. But we have been burned so often. What’s your take on it? Can we relax a little bit?

— DARLENE

• • •

Dear Darlene,

The oil barons are doing with superstorms and wildfires what the Israelis are doing with American bombs. COP28 makes you wonder, do the super-rich believe that they can steer the planet’s heat itself? Yes, they are climate-makers now, which must be something like being God.

It’s a sort of science-fiction logic. They believe their pollution keeps the indigenous people of the Global South down. “Keep ‘em busy with those disasters and droughts and starvation, and then give ‘em enough of a reparation allowance that their governments look like they’re trying.” While up North they flood themselves with orgasmic hallucinations of wealth.

Well, Darlene, COP28 does send me off into surreal flights. But when I discovered that Prime Minister Netanyahu was siphoning money to Hamas so that our tax money was shooting from both sides, I start seeing manipulative dramas everywhere.

The petro states and the corporate CEOs believe that the destruction descending on the poor in the South is their arrangement with the natural world. The Great Stall (the first COP was in 1995) has worked so far. Oil industry profits in 2022 were an astronomical $4 Trillion. It’s hard to exaggerate the dominant presence of the Oilies. There were 2,500 of them registered at COP28, representing annual profits larger than the total revenue of the Chinese government. How does a Pacific island drowning from sea-rise negotiate with that?

Once again, as in the 27 previous climate negotiations called COPs, the delegates were fed those mushy promises. COP28 publicity hacks called the agreement “unprecedented,” but they say that every year. The “Net Zero Emissions by 2050” — the fake goal that leaves the horror to the young and the unborn — that’s still the single material fact of all this, and the deadly nature of it fits nice- ly with the thousands of dead and dying children In Gaza.

If the oil people believe that the Earth is operating on a schedule that they can predict, and even direct, then… Well what do they believe? The answer is nothing. They are zombie junkies. Making money is their drug of choice, creating so much of it that they preside over the Earth from a second layer of super-government. Planet Oil.

This current toxic wealth surge will get them a few years of triumphant quarterly reports. But if the Earth needs to act out later — what then? Is their hubris so extreme that they believe they can bribe the Sixth Mass Extinction? Well Darlene, we need to thank the suits for throwing us that rhetorical bone, “transition out of fossil fuels.” What a great phrase! We’ll try to save the children with it.

The Earth will win! Earthalujah!
— BILLY

REVEREND BILLY TALEN IS THE PASTOR OF THE CHURCH OF STOP SHOPPING. HAVE A QUESTION FOR THE REVEREND? EMAIL REVBILLY@REVBILLY.COM AND UNBURDEN YOUR SOUL.

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