Earthshot: a (friendly) Warning!

If you search for Earthshot on the internet, DO NOT CHOOSE the option “we are closed  till December” My antivrus software warns me that it is unsafe.

‘Prizewinners’ triggers it, which makes no sense as Earthshot was only launched  a few days ago..

It makes no mention of prizes, but hijacks a presumably legitimate website published by the Natural History Museum in Kensington

Earthshot aims to save the world form ecological destruction. It could not have more trustworthy originators than The Duke of Cambridge and Sir David , but I do have some questions.

Appplicants do not apply directly to Earthshot, which has appointed nearly 200 ‘Nominators’, available here. Can one apply to more than one Nominator? How many applications can each Nominator put forward? Are Nominators selecting, or to what extent can they press the claims of applicants? Is there a deadline each year?

But my main puzzle is who is providing  this large sum of money? What are their motives? For me, the offer of money for possible ways to solve the ecological crisis implies that they are looking for practical, technological answers. It is not obvious that they challenge the growth assumption, which is essential.

I hope to offer the unconditional basic income(UBI) as an important contribution to Earthshot’s stated aim., but on account of its philosophical, rather  thanits practical implications, although these are considerable. It will be a catalyst for more practical ideas. It will give individuals a sense of security, whatever measure are necessary to save the ecosphere. This sense of security is essential. because the UBI must be associated with an international, not merely governmental , infrastructure which recognizes the gravity of the threat to the ecosphere.. If this does not happen, the 47 years I have spent advocating an essential part of saving the ecosphere will instead boost consumerism – the worst effect possible.

CV19 has given us a taste of what is necessary. Instead of the voluntary economic contraction which could have started 45 years ago, the world has been plunged into a recession willy nilly. Any attempt to kick-start the economy which ignores medical imperatives, will simply wreak more economic damage later.

I take for granted that Earthshot will produce hundreds, perhaps thousands of proposals useful  towards Earthshot’s aims. But unless they are tied to fiscal arrangements based on ‘ecological footprints’, including taxes, some quite swingeing, on the activities which are still destroying life support systems, these proposals will  merely cool a bonfire by putting more logs on it.

I suspect however that I shall need rather more support than I have received so far

At school I was brilliant at Latin.  I had exam results to prove it. I feel just as confident of my understanding of what need to happen to save the word’s life support systems, but this time I have no proof. I do not claim to be clever, only as a (self-diagnosed) Asperger’s, to have a different pattern of insights and blind spots from ‘normal‘ minds.

My question to whoever selects applicants will be “If this amount of money can solve the life-threatening problem now, why has no government done it already?” The logical answer is as obvious to me as was the logic of latin at school. (It is all in my weblog.)

If the stakes are high enough to be worth £50 million, the UBI ought at least to be among the contenders..

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