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Don’t panic, humanity: selfless billionaires will save us all | Marina Hyde

The Earth may be burning, but have no fear – Elon Musk assures us there will be plenty of jobs on Mars

When humanity’s dying stragglers mark up the final tapes for the time capsule, I hope they’ll call this episode A Great Week to Bail Out an Airline. Even as David Attenborough warned of Earth’s “crisis moment”, the UK government rescued ailing airline Flybe on the basis that some people can’t get to work between Wales and Scotland or wherever any other way. Eventually, surviving businessmen will be able to row between mountain peaks, but for now corporate efficiency trumped the climate emergency. Or the “climate debate”, as some still have it, even though it’s the sort of debate that should ideally ensue when I tell my children not to run in the road – ie, none.

And so to the global backdrop. The Australian prime minister, Scott Morrison, must be religious, on the basis he’s offered “thoughts and prayers” to the victims of Australia’s raging bushfires. In any reasonable theology, however, Morrison’s decision to serve in a cabinet that abolished the country’s climate commission, to slash fire and rescue budgets, and to ignore repeated concerns of fire chiefs would suggest he’s going to burn in hell. Or in Australia, which will probably be quicker.

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