“Avengers: Age of Ultron” is said to have a budget of roughly $250 million. The Marvel movie required shooting in 25 locations, including countries like Bangladesh, South Africa, Italy, South Korea and England. With all the cast and crew and sets involved, it had to leave a hefty carbon footprint. And yet, somehow, director Joss Whedon and Mark Ruffalo (aka: The Hulk) thought it would be a good idea to lecture the rest of us on climate change this Earth Day.

Joss Whedon Climate ChangeIf Joss Whedon really cared about climate change as his self-congratulatory tweets suggest, then he would renounce the kind of big budget movies (and carbon footprints) Marvel Studios leaves all over the globe. He won’t do that though, because he really, really likes the millions of dollars Marvel puts into his bank account.

Mark Ruffalo is no different.

Mark Ruffalo Climate Change Earth DayYes, we can do something — like not act in a movie with a carbon footprint that 99.9 percent of moviegoers could not duplicate in 10,000 lifetimes.

The weird thing about hastags like #ClimateChangeIsReal is that there is basically no one who denies that climate changes. It’s always changed. In fact, yours truly blogged on climate change after my visit to Virginia Living Museum in Newport News, Virginia in 2013.

Here is what one of the educational notes next to the museum’s riverbank fossils said:

“Since the end of the dinosaur age, eastern Virginia has been covered by ocean water many times. Beneath these seas, layers upon layers of shells, bones and teeth from abundant ocean life accumulated to form fossil-bearing sediments. Coastal river bluffs now display these ancient sediment layers, in particular, a 3.5-to-5 million-year-old fossil-rich band called Yorktown Formation,” (Virginia Living Museum).

It is safe to say that the climate has changed quite a bit over the course of 5 million years — so much so that the great state of Virginia has been underwater multiple times.

Douglas Ernst geologyThe reason why Hollywood actors and directors engage in meaningless Twitter rhetoric like “#ClimateChangeIsReal” is because any time they’re forced to debate substantive questions they look “dumber than weather.”

Here are some real questions for your favorite “Avengers: Age of Ultron” environmental activist stars:

  1. How much does man have an effect on climate in relation to things like that giant ball of exploding gas called the sun?
  2. If man is responsible for significant changes to the earth’s ever-changing climate, what are the proposed political solutions to the problem?
  3. Will the political solutions put forth by Hollywood actors and directors result in losses to freedom and liberty?
  4. Will the political solutions put forth by men like Mark Ruffalo actually have any tangible effect?

Those are questions Messrs. Whedon and Ruffalo aren’t comfortable answering, which is why they opt instead for tweets that result in fawning praise by their Twitter followers.

The next time these guys essentially try to shame you because you like nice long showers or vehicles that don’t run on batteries, ask them how it feels to be a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe juggernaut and its Galactus-sized carbon footprint. My guess is that that they’ll run away faster than Quicksilver.

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About the Author Douglas Ernst

I'm a former Army guy who believes success comes through hard work, honesty, optimism, and perseverance. I believe seeing yourself as a victim creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe in God. I'm a USC Trojan with an MA in Political Science from American University.

20 comments

  1. Ugh. Whedon just got done whining that a scene in Jurassic World in which a man and a woman argue because he’s a fun-loving, exciting guy and she’s a straight-laced, uptight girl is sexist. Good lord. And that’s on top of his saying that Anita Sarkeesian’s witless whining really impressed him a while ago. I’ve liked Whedon’s stuff in the past but this blatant SJW crap is about to put me off his work altogether. I was sorry to see him leave the Avengers series, but he’s put my mind at ease about that.

    1. Whedon just got done whining that a scene in Jurassic World in which a man and a woman argue because he’s a fun-loving, exciting guy and she’s a straight-laced, uptight girl is sexist.

      I guess it’s only permissible in the world of Joss Whedon to write women who are superpowerfulawesomeindependent (one word). Every time this guy gets political, the “Pompous Hollywood Know-it-all Meter” goes off the charts.

    2. If that got Whedon whining, for the love of God, no one send him a link to Agony Booth’s review of “Lost World.” All the criticism of Sarah Harding might give him a stroke.

    1. Remember the last time I explained this to you, vunderguy (aka: Emmanuel, aka Person Who Is Person)? I guess not. I’m not sure how it is that you don’t get the difference between a collaborative project and, say, a solo artist or a painter. You also don’t seem to grasp the concept that one of the things I do on my blog — billed as “Bareknuckled Commentary mixed with Pop Culture” — is to review movies. It would be incredibly weird if I locked myself inside a little bubble and refused to experience anything that veered outside my personal politics.

      I suggest you stop. Like I said, my patience with you is done. If you want to act like a troll, then I will treat you like all the others who came before you.

  2. You know Doug, George Orwell was a lefty socialist up until his dying breath and yet he wrote about the terrors of where Communism inevitably leads.

    My point in saying this is that, all too often, we’re part of the problems we want to see stamped out and this way, you’re no different from Orwell though you do not share the same ideological strain as the folks you have a problem with.

    Furthermore, if people willingly throw in their lot in with the makers of such problems, such as the working stiffs who worked on those movies, who are VERY likely to share in the same nonsense thinking that their masters who they willingly submit to are, then let them starve as well so long as their masters do.

    The problem with a lot of conservatives, I’m finding, is that you’re a bunch of white knights who are worsening or being ineffectual against the problem since it calls for BLACK knighting and less, that involves the very minor sacrifice of not giving your opponents anything lest they use, as they always have, your very own blood, sweat, and tears against you and everything you stand for.

    You say I’m in a little bubble, but you sir, and people like you, are in a big bubble. A big buble supported by your bland naivety and your unwillingness to get over the overbearing nostalgia of your favorite childhood icons now on the silverscreen and see that the people responsible care nothing about your childhood memories or anyone elses and want to not only savagely beat them into submission but beat everything in this country into submission with a boot on everyone’s faces, forever.

    You think I get a chuckle about being so cynical and pointing this stuff out? I don’t. I honestly want to think, like you do, that I can still go to see these movies in theater, watch everybody’s reactions, and feel good about myself while also thinking that eventually, the actors and masterminds behind such pictures feel themselves subdued by the public. But the honest, sad truth is that that is NOT, nor will it ever be, the zeitgeist unless far more effective measures, like not going to the theatre and getting bootlegs if you certainly MUST see a picture are implemented against such yahoos.

    For all your hatred of ‘Hope and Change,’ and mine as well, conservatives like you have offered little but vain platitudes and have changed little.

    1. You’re hilarious.

      In a different time and a different place I’d intellectually fill you with holes like an A-10 Warthog. I’m not going to do that now because a.) I’m a different person than I was a few years ago, and b.) because my regulars just read your verbal diarrhea and shook their heads in disbelief that you have the nerve to address me like that.

      Good luck, “Black Knight.” Remember to eat your vegetables.

      Note to regular readers: For anyone who wants me to address a specific point vunderguy (aka: Person Who Is Person, aka: Emmanuel) made during his ironic Two Minutes Hate, let me know. I will do so for you.

    2. In a different time and a different place I’d intellectually fill you with holes like an A-10 Warthog.

      Best line I’ve read in a long time!!

  3. “The next time these guys essentially try to shame you because you like nice long showers or vehicles that don’t run on batteries, ask them how it feels to be a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe juggernaut and its Galactus-sized carbon footprint. My guess is that that they’ll run away faster than Quicksilver.”

    That last line. So much win, it’s practically priceless. If you’ll excuse me, I need to go and purchase a hat so that I may tip to you in your honor Doug.

    1. Haha. Thanks, Zac! Sometimes wife reads my stuff, shakes her head, and says, “Too far, Doug. You’ve gone too far.” It’s often hard to tell when I crossed that line, so I’m glad you liked it. 🙂

  4. I love when a person tells me I need to drive a smart car then turns and gets on his private jet. Douglas feel free to tear up the third paragraph:

    “Furthermore, if people willingly throw in their lot in with the makers of such problems, such as the working stiffs who worked on those movies, who are VERY likely to share in the same nonsense thinking that their masters who they willingly submit to are, then let them starve as well so long as their masters do. “

    Let me ask who gets to ask their boss about all of their personal stances before taking a job? Large swings with big misses, using extremes to try to shame.

    I have to say this one was so silly I shook my head and laughed:

    “The problem with a lot of conservatives, I’m finding, is that you’re a bunch of white knights who are worsening or being ineffectual against the problem since it calls for BLACK knighting and less, that involves the very minor sacrifice of not giving your opponents anything lest they use, as they always have, your very own blood, sweat, and tears against you and everything you stand for. “

    1. Vunderguy is just like the people who said they would never go to Chick fil A because its late founder, Dan Cathy, opposed same-sex marriage. I suppose I should never buy a Starbucks cup of hot chocolate on a cold winter day because its CEO is liberal. And perhaps I should try to figure out the politics of the CEO behind my laundry detergent — if he’s a liberal guy, then I must start making my own soap.

      The second paragraph you mention made me laugh as well. I don’t need to justify my life’s work and worth to “vunderguy,” but if I was so insecure that I felt a need to write up a summary right here just for him, then he’d look like a complete fool. I’m not sure what constitutes being effective for a single conservative like myself. Do I need a media empire? Do I have to produce my own movie? Do I need to fill giant stadiums with Styrofoam Greek columns like then-senator Obama in 2008? At what point do I go from being an “ineffectual white knight” to a supercrazyawesome knight like him? Like I said in my initial response, he’s hilarious.

      This guy comes on my blog asking my advice on a wide range of issues — including whether or not he needs to eat his vegetables — and then when he wears out his welcome he has the nerve to lash out at me with personal attacks. I hope it was cathartic for him.

  5. Sometimes we have to ask “is this a hill worth dying on”. I pick my battles based on outcomes and how much it means to me. For example I love Marvel, but they have made it hard to support them. My wife had nearly the complete Amazing Spider-man series (actual issues) and almost all of the other ones as well yet Slott was so repulsive she quit collecting Spider-man. Someone like Slott says “you are not the market” but she has over 10,000 books that say otherwise. How many fans can say they have purchased that much, now I ask again who is the market?
    That was her battle, she supports the brand but only parts of it. We are down to 3 books from Marvel a month and it may be 2 soon since my subscription ended for one and I may not resubscribe due to Marvel’s behavior.
    A extreme mistake in his rant is simply absurd, who will look up every stockholder or stakeholder before making a purchase? That mentality is purely ridiculous.

    1. I have almost every single issue of ASM from the early 80s until shortly after Brand New Day. I just couldn’t take it anymore and basically walked away after BND. The amount of money I spend on Marvel products and merchandise these days is a tiny fraction of what I spent years ago. The thing is that I’m older now — i.e., I have more disposable income — and yet I spend less because of the way Marvel editors treat the fans.

      I’m not going to completely cut Marvel out because I think it would be ridiculous to stop writing on the industry. My WordPress stats tell me that my commentary is reaching a lot of people. I’m not a superhero who can read minds — I can’t tell you exactly how much I’ve influenced those who read my blog — but I know that many people have set eyes on what I’ve created.

      In vunderguy’s mind, I guess I’m “ineffectual” until I have my own standing army. Maybe one day Dan Slott will stop calling my readers “cronies” and start calling them “foot soldiers.” Only then will I have truly arrived. 😉

    2. “The problem with a lot of conservatives, I’m finding, is that you’re a bunch of white knights who are worsening or being ineffectual against the problem since it calls for BLACK knighting and less, that involves the very minor sacrifice of not giving your opponents anything lest they use, as they always have, your very own blood, sweat, and tears against you and everything you stand for.”

      This gave me a chuckle, too. I could directly respond it, but there’d be no point. Honestly, many of vunderguy’s posts are like word salad.

      I see movies/read books/listen to music by people who don’t necessarily hold my exact same political views. If I didn’t, I’d be an extremely lonely person, cut off from pop culture. I’ll still see Avengers: Age of Ultron, because I love Marvel movies. I read books by Stephen King, whose leftist politics have become more blatant in recent years, and who was a student anti-war protester in the 1960s, a group I hold responsible for destroying this country with their Marxist mindsets and passing it on the younger generations. But I enjoy his books, so I read them. I also recently read the first five books of the Laundry Files series (not as bad as it sounds; it’s about a division of MI-5 that fights Lovecraftian monsters) by British liberal Charles Stross, who judging from the way American characters are depicted in the series, isn’t too fond of the United States. He’s also a hardcore atheist. But this series are entertaining and I’ll continue to read it. I listen to music by bands like CCR, Pink Floyd and others, even though many of them are quite liberal (and Roger Waters is a rabid anti-Israel loon). But I enjoy their music. And it would be bizarre if I cut myself off from all that just because I didn’t agree with the creators’ views.

      I also found this hilarious coming from a self-proclaimed DC fan:

      “You say I’m in a little bubble, but you sir, and people like you, are in a big bubble. A big buble supported by your bland naivety and your unwillingness to get over the overbearing nostalgia of your favorite childhood icons now on the silverscreen and see that the people responsible care nothing about your childhood memories or anyone elses and want to not only savagely beat them into submission but beat everything in this country into submission with a boot on everyone’s faces, forever.”

      It’s ironic he’s complaining about nostalgia and changing of characters, especially since he’s the same guy who once called me a “sexist” for disagreeing with him on Wonder Woman of all things. Yes, vunderguy, I have a long memory. I may forgive, but I don’t forget.

      I also seem to recall him telling me, back when I had a blog, that I had “no right” to complain about the state of the comic book industry because I wasn’t a published writer. Seriously.

    3. Your observations highlight how the unintentionally-funny nature of vunderguy’s comments are best-understood by those who have interacted with him for some time. The guy who had a near meltdown over a discussion on Superman, the guy who called you a “sexist” over an opinion on Wonder Woman, etc. should probably tread more lightly.

      If he wants to push it with me on “bubble” remarks, then I guess I’ll burst a few more of his bubbles. He can’t say I didn’t warn him.

    4. Yeah, I just don’t understand Vunderguy’s bizarre mindsets and his tendency to lash out at people who otherwise agree with him.

      Also, one of the reasons I like to see Marvel movies is because, while I may be only 25, I still remember a time where there weren’t as many superhero movies as they are now and when it seemed like Batman was the only major superhero who got a film series. I remember a time when people scoffed at the notion of a cinematic universe for superheroes and it was considered a mere pipe dream by fans like me. So I consider myself lucky to finally be able to see some of my favorite characters on the silver screen. Vunderguy is younger than me (I think he’s around my sister’s age), so he probably doesn’t remember a time where there weren’t such movies.

    5. When I was growing up there were assurances that all the legal stuff was going to be sorted out and that James Cameron would direct a Spider-Man movie. There were rumors that maybe Tom Cruise would play Peter Parker and then as he got older it was Iron Man. Ever since I was a kid they dangled that hope over the fans’ heads of a Spider-Man movie, but it never seemed to come. When Raimi’s version finally landed in theaters in 2002, I actually got a tear in my eye while watching it opening night.

      Kids today don’t appreciate how good they have it when it comes to superhero movies. **Get off my lawn!** 😉

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