Inaction Quotes (4 quotes)
As compared with Europe, our climate and traditions all pre-dispose us to a life of inaction and ease. We are influenced either by religious sentiment, class patriotism or belief in kismet, whereas the activities of Western nations rest on an economic basis. While they think and act in conformity with economic necessities, we expect to prosper without acquiring the scientific precision, the inventive faculty, the thoroughness, the discipline and restraints of modern civilisation.
Economists use the expression “opportunity costs” for losses incurred through certain choices made over others, including ignorance and inaction. For systematics, or more precisely the neglect of systematics and the biological research dependent upon it, the costs are very high.
My grandfather opened the first chapter of his story, A Smile of the Walrus, with an old nursery rhyme, “Did you ever see a walrus smile all these many years? Why yes I’ve seen a walrus smile, but it was hidden by his tears.” As we open this new chapter in the battle against climate change, I fear that if we do not take action, then the smiles of our children, like the walrus, will be hidden by the tears they shed as they pay the consequences of our inaction, our apathy and our greed.
While we cannot accurately predict the course of climate change in the coming decades, the risks we run if we don’t change our course are enormous. Prudent risk management does not equate uncertainty with inaction.