Our weekend in Chicago (and the end of the Earth) in two pictures

    Not realizing that this was the weekend of the Chicago Marathon, Linette and I decided to pack up the family and head to the Windy City for the weekend. The top photo was taken inside the Evolving Planet exhibition at the Field Museum. The second photo is of a vehicle promoting a new menu item at Wendy’s called the Baconator. Taken together, I think they probably make an extremely profound statement. Sadly, however, I don’t feel as though I’m intellectually up to the task of articulating it at the moment, given the fact that, over the past hour, I’ve absorbed my entire monthly wine ration. I will say, though, that it’s more than just a little sobering to see the word “today” written right next to the phrase “mass extinction.”

    OK, I know that I said I wasn’t going to offer any analysis, but, really, how better to sum up the dire situation we find ourselves in today than with a photo of a fossil fuel-guzzling tractor trailer currently criss-crossing the nation, evangelizing on behalf of the factory-farmed fast food monstrosity known as the Baconator? It’s not exactly the model of sustainability, is it?

    And, here, for those of you who are interested in such things, is a little background on this Sixth Extinction which we’re currently living through, taken from the website of UC Berkley Professor David Ulansey.

    …”It’s the next annihilation of vast numbers of species. It is happening now, and we, the human race, are its cause,” explains Dr. Richard Leakey, the world’s most famous paleoanthropologist. Every year, between 17,000 and 100,000 species vanish from our planet, he says. “For the sake of argument, let’s assume the number is 50,000 a year. Whatever way you look at it, we’re destroying the Earth at a rate comparable with the impact of a giant asteroid slamming into the planet, or even a shower of vast heavenly bodies.” The statistics (Leakey) has assembled are staggering. Fifty percent of the Earth’s species will have vanished inside the next 100 years; mankind is using almost half the energy available to sustain life on the planet, and this figure will only grow as our population leaps from 5.7 billion to 10 billion inside the next half-century. Such a dramatic and overwhelming mass extinction threatens the entire complex fabric of life on Earth, including the species responsible for it: Homo sapiens…

    I hope that doesn’t ruin your appetite for the new Baconator.

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      14 Comments

      1. 734
        Posted October 7, 2012 at 11:03 pm | Permalink

        I hope, when God returns to earth to watch the last one of us die, he says “You’ve been baconated.”

      2. John Galt
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 7:05 am | Permalink

        As there were five previous extinction episodes on the earth, it’s clearly a natural phenomenon. I see nothing alarming about this whatsoever.

      3. John Galt
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 7:06 am | Permalink

        Also, the earth is only six thousand years old, so this entire museum is built upon a foundation of bullshit and witchcraft.

      4. Mr. X
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 8:09 am | Permalink

        If so no other reason, we should stop mass extinction as some of the animals we’re losing forever may be delicious.

        I’m not joking, either. I think that could be an ad campaign that would resonate with Americans.

      5. anonymous
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 9:05 am | Permalink

        Can anyone confirm that Paul Ryan won the Chicago marathon?

      6. Posted October 8, 2012 at 9:21 am | Permalink

        Nonsense. The Earth is only 3000 years old. Jesus said so.

      7. KKT
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

        More than 160 species previously unknown to science were recently identified by a Dutch-Malaysian expedition in remote Borneo. How many of them will no longer exist in 50 years I wonder.

        http://photoblog.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/10/03/14203596-borneo-bio-hunt-turns-up-treasures

      8. KitchenAid
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

        @ John Galt: I dare you to change your persona to Emma Goldman.

      9. Thom Elliott
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

        What kind of communist homosexual agenda are you trying to push here Maynard?? To dare to suggest there was any sort of correlation between sucking down industrial flesh by the tonnage and the collapse of the earth’s environment is pure libtard hogwarsh. We need to focus on the real problems of today, like eliminating contraception, preserving our European American way of life, extracting the final amounts oil from the dying oceans, and prepairing for white Jesus to return. This is just another way the communist muslims are trying to punish the fiscal success of God’s elect.

      10. Alice Krum
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

        May I be so bold as to suggest that Mass Extinction Monday’s become a regular feature here on the site?

      11. XX
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

        The Baconator isn’t the only sign of the apocalypse. There’s also Honey Boo Boo, and this.

        http://imgur.com/EkgtS

      12. XX
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

        And, even worse yet.

        http://imgur.com/rqeZF

      13. smellytongues
        Posted October 8, 2012 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

        That gorilla on the bike is about the best thing ever. Time for a baconator…

      14. anonymous
        Posted October 11, 2012 at 9:07 am | Permalink

        The problem with the Baconator is that it doesn’t have enough cheese for me.

        http://imgur.com/gallery/oIcsa

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