Cassandra has moved. Ugo Bardi publishes now on a new site called "The Seneca Effect."

Friday, April 26, 2019

Greta Thunberg heavily insulted by an Italian newspaper. She's smashing all the mediatic barriers!

The front page of the Italian newspaper "Libero" of April 18. The main title says "La Rompiballe va dal Papa," translatable as "The pain in the ass Girl goes to see the Pope." The red text "vieni avanti Gretina" elegantly plays on the similarity in Italian of the diminutive "Gretina" (little Greta) and "cretina" (cretin).

"Libero" is an Italian newspaper, in terms of level, it is probably below such egregious insults to human intelligence as the British "The Sun" and the "Daily Mail." Similar, but perhaps even worse, than Fox News in the US. So, being insulted by "Libero" is a mark of honor, to say the least.

But, as I argued in a previous post, these and other insults show that Greta Thunberg is smashing through the media: she is a memetic equivalent of the Chicxulub meteorite and she has a chance to destroy the intellectual dinosaurs that populate the earth nowadays.

Of course, the battle is still to be fought, but it is impressive how fast Greta is growing in the memesphere: note how she is pushing down to irrelevance such evil characters as John Bolton and Mike Pompeo.

Will Greta's action last? Difficult to say: so far she has been able to arouse the worst rabble existing in the mediasphere and they are spitting their lungs out in their screams against her. But they can do much worse than screaming and they will do their best to destroy her and what she represents. It will be a difficult battle for them, though. Maybe Greta is burning her candle on both ends, sure, but it is such a lovely light!

If you can read Italian, at this link you can find a commented list of the insults that Greta received in Italy.


  1. Ugo
    The Daily Mail and Sun take a cautious, if patronising, line with Greta, but both make it an occasion to have a go at their 'favourite' politicians. "What troubles us are the credulous adults fawning over her" (Sun).The Mail manages to quote Jeremy Corbyn's older brother who is an activist 'denier' of climate change who claims to know a lot more about 'physics' than Greta. Actual arguments are almost identical in both papers: "... [her demand] would crash our economy" ... "Britain is a world leader in reducing carbon emissions ... anyway we produce a miniscule amount compared with others”. I seem to have heard these arguments before!

    So we sit toasty and righteous warmed by natural gas and complain about the Germans and the Chinese while airing the view that the 'child' has had her head filled with inaccurate opinions by dubious characters and is being promoted by politicians only too pleased with a photo opportunity. Meanwhile the ‘grown-up’ Sun and Mail continue in 'the real world'.

    1. Subtler than our press, perhaps even worse.

    2. Phil - Her "solutions" will crash the global economy. ANy solution that reduces FF use fast enough to make any kind of difference will absolutely crash the economies of most of the world as it should. Any "solutions" that say we can maintain economic growth and end FF use are complete BS without a lick of understanding just how much the world relies on FFs.

      If it is a gradual reduction that is desired then where is the remaining FFs focused on? Building out a global "renewable energy" infrastructure? Which would leave none left for economic stability. Or is it economic stability first then a bit of "renewable energy" infrastructure here and there.

      Nobody, I mean nobody has written accurately on how this might play out and still dramatically reduce emissions.

    3. I would add into the economic considerations less consumption, less pollution, no CAFOs,
      much less air traffic, much less large ship traffic, no pesticides/ insecticides, herbicides, kill off most of finance/interest, and on and on. Any of which hammers the economy, all together causes major collapse.

    4. Jeff
      I agree, of course, but the ‘modern economy’, to put it mildly, is not spread evenly across the globe and there are ways in which even in our own economy there are people suffering hardship and rotten lives every bit as difficult as anything I knew when I was still at school. (I am old.) And there are some things which meant a lot to me back then that have either gone or have deteriorated. By definition in those days these did not cost a lot. My parents would have plumped for a 'sufficiency' after we had gone through rationing and war insecurity.
      What choice is there going to be for young people entering adult life in our economy? I grew up in a British coal-based economy when GDP per person was less than 1/3rd of what it is now. There are more of us now and GDP is not a wholly useful measure, but it is possible to manage in a lower-geared economy. Present dispensations are going to decline anyway. ‘Affordability’ is the key. We could get on and insulate and retrofit our wasteful homes so that the grandchildren will be able to afford heat. It is not going to be easy. And we really do not need cars in our cities.

    5. Jef
      "Nobody, I mean nobody has written accurately on how this might play out ..."
      I have to agree but Gail Tverberg gives it a good go from time to time. Her latest today is here
      I have big queries about her analysis and her alternation between 'collapse' and 'no other option than BAU'. Rather I guess we all of us have something we might do personally to help to reduce our environmental impact ('Greta's thesis') provided we do not at the same time inadvertently create further systemic dangers. In this regard I do not accept Gail's thesis that actions that lower our individual energy consumption must inevitably be an attack on 'the economy'.

      Sorry about the double ff above. Smile.

  2. Generalissimo GerkinovApril 27, 2019 at 6:26 PM

    I found this blog a few days ago looking for Tainter's homepage (other than his university bio page he doesn't seem to have one) and have enjoyed perusing your posts.

    Greta Thunberg, like Malala Yousafzai and the Parkland kids, are stating the obvious, but the establishment is heavily invested in the Emperor's wardrobe.

    It's interesting times indeed.



Ugo Bardi is a member of the Club of Rome, faculty member of the University of Florence, and the author of "Extracted" (Chelsea Green 2014), "The Seneca Effect" (Springer 2017), and Before the Collapse (Springer 2019)