"Thomas Malthus, who famously predicted that population growth in Europe
would lead to the extinction of the human race." Famously predicted my
foot! Malthus was not an idiot. His main concern was the state of the lower
economic classes whom he believed were often hurt by population increases. His
concern was to occasionally put brakes on population increases through various
means such as postponed marriage and absolute chastity outside of marriage. If
population couldn't be controlled is such ways, population brakes like food
shortages could afflict the lower classes. Malthus did not subscribe to the
notion that mankind was fated for a catastrophe due to population overshooting
resources.To my knowledge he never predicted the extinction of the human
race.Your uniformed views of Malthus makes me question your views of
"The overall human condition is far better today than it was in 1895 when we
first started recording global temperatures."So, because we have
made economic and scientific advancements over the last 119 years we
shouldn't worry about the dire consequences of global warming?Mr. Liljenquist is an economist by training, after reading this I'm
convinced that he knows no more about climate science than the man on the
street. Rather than have people write outside of their area of expertise, why
not have a qualified professional like BYU's Summer Rupper, a climate
scientist, give us their opinion?
I agree that we need to be adaptable to deal with climate change. That includes
being willing to embrace renewable energy, being willing to cooperate with other
countries like China and India, and thoughtfully considering economic policies
that will help shift consumption patterns. But I think some people argue that we
need to adapt while at the same time rejecting out of hand any of the changes
that are key to adaptation.
When a politician wanna-be, writes one newspaper article after another,
and consistantly sides with the 3% of the Global Warming deniers, and argues against "Science", and loathes the EPA, Who do we believe -- The Scientists who report Science based on
facts and data? orThe Political Politician Newspaper writer who will
say or do anything to get elected?
Well said Dan!I suspect I'm probably more worried than you
about the deleterious effects we are having and are likely to have on our
environment. But, the almost hysterical and very UNscientific stance of many of
the staunchly zealous environmentalists seem almost as great a threat to our
Dumping of massive amounts of carbon will do something. When everyone in Mexico
and China has two cars and a SUV will it still be a non-issue?
@one voteSalt Lake City, UTAnd please don't forget the
additional 1.2 Billion people in India...America = 320 Million For 100 years, Americans have been telling the world to be "just
like us".Can you even imagine what the world will be like in
20-30 years when -- India (1.2 bil), China (1.35 bil), Mexico (200 mil),
and Brazil (200 mil) == all have people living like people do here in
Utah?... 4,000 sq ft houses, 2 cars, SUVs, and Trucks -- and driving
This:"Based on their own models, if Americans immediately
stopped consuming all fossil fuels and collectively held our breath for the next
80 years, at best we would see a 0.5 Fahrenheit degree reduction in what
climatologists predict will be a 4 degree increase in average global
temperatures."So, what do you True Believers intend to do? This
is your 97% talking. Better get into line and march.Sell the car,
unless it runs on wind, solar, or biomass. And what's with all that
exhaling?Get to it. You have a world to save.
"they vastly underestimate mankind’s ability to adapt, survive and
progress in a changing world."Seriously Dan? Have you listened
to your fellow Republicans? There's no discussion in their minds at all.
It's all a hoax, not real, a socialist plot to gain control over the
economy, a ruse to make money. Need I go on?
Ole Danny Boy is doing is monthly pandering to the tea party.As much
as he tries to appear as a moderate, he always goes back to his low information
voter roots. He loves that tea party calling tree!It's time the
rest of us move on. Those who believe that the earth is flat and that the cure
for diseases is to bleed people need to be left behind. We need to stop enabling
ill-educated low information voters from having any influence on our politics.
Yes, climate change has occurred naturally throughout a Earth's past.
That's irrelevant, because the rate of change we're currently causing
is happening about 10,000 times faster than prior natural changes. Species
simply can't adapt naturally that fast. Lillienquist seems to
be taking he attitude that as long as he can crank up his A/C a little more
there's nothing to worry about. That's incredibly short-sighted.The choice now before is whether we land softly or clash hard.
Continuing business-as-usual is simply not an option. We do NOT need to shrink
the global economy, but we do need to vigorously expand our efforts to to wean
our economy away from fossil fuels. Technologies and business models exist to
make this succeed. Germany already gets the overwhelming majority of their
energy from renewable sources - we're capable of that, too. Even better, in
fact.Failing to make the effort only guarantees that you fail.Climate change denialists need to acknowledge reality and pay attention
to the actual science instead of the oil and coal companies who will cheerfully
wreck the planet so long as they can make a quick buck from it.
I think it's refreshing to finally hear a right wing conservative finally
admit the science is correct and climate change is real and human beings play a
role in it. The real debate should not be on the science but on the
solution(s), if any. I believe human beings are no different than any other
animal species when it comes to controlling their actions to avoid over
extending the carry capacity of their environment.Mother Nature has been
around for over a hundred million years, long before man or any religon which he
created. She'll survive the era of man, just as she survived every other
era in her existence.
@Nate – “This is your 97% talking. Better get into line and
march.”The first step to solving any problem is to first
recognize there is one (and what the causes are). Problem is in
America today we have a situation where facts, evidence and data appear
insufficient to changed highly politicized minds. These minds (ironically, often
very religious) do not believe in a God designed natural order of things (in
this case, a natural carbon cycle) where changes to this natural order occur
over hundreds of thousands of years (one time shocks like volcanoes and meteor
strikes notwithstanding). Instead they believe we can ignore this
natural order, do whatever we want to alter it in unprecedented & ever
increasing ways, and the results will be either negligible are awesome (more CO2
means more plants). By the way, this is the hubris I was referring
to in my earlier “you’re smarter than God” comment.
It was one of the warmest winters on record globally. The inability of
easterners (California had their warmest winter on record) to realize that a
cold winter out east doesn't mean the entire globe had one too is their own
problem. The reason for calling it climate change instead of global warming is
that the latter makes it seem like it's just warmer temperatures. The
former highlights the broad impacts from glacial melt to ocean acidification.
I'd be interested in knowing how many times Dan voted in the legislature to
actually DOsomething about this problem. How many times, on the other
hand, did he vote as told by industry/business lobbyists who warned that a wrong
vote might result in his being labeled a "neo-malthusist"?
Dan, I appreciate your views on the necessity for adaptation to change. Why then
do your conservative friends resist any and all attempts to "adapt"? I
refer to the rah-rah approach to draining every last drop of oil and burning it,
the constant mockery of alternative energy sources, the continual efforts to
hobble environmental regulation? Why the never-ending drumbeat of attacks on
EPA, BLM, and any agency that seeks to "adapt" instead of riding
roughshod over our fragile planet? Why for instance the "conservative"
howling over GSE Monument, which prevented the rape of the lovely Kaiparowits
Plateau for its coal? I submit that the hearts and minds of conservatives are
located in their wallets. Please refute if you can.
A well thought out and well written opinion piece. While I have disagreed with
Dan in the past, I agree with his position on climate change. We know our
climate is changing and that we have an impact on it. What the different sides
of this issue disagree on is how much of an impact we can have and how we should
be reacting to climate change. The idea that the government should be stepping
in and forcing us all to accommodate one side of this issue is ridiculous, but
of course this is the same government that has forced us all to buy their
version of acceptable health care or be penalized. So we shouldn't be
surprised.Our government should also not be engaged in protecting
everyone from the effects of climate change. Our climate is affected by events
we have no control over. Studies of the deep layers of arctic ice have revealed
particles from coal burned in England in the 1800's. We should all be
prepared to react to the impacts of climate change in our own lives and in our
Dan admits that global climate change is real. That means he does not deny
climate change nor side with those who do. Furthermore, he makes it clear that
he believes climate is influenced by human activity. His piece questions the
efficacy of current policies to deal with climate change. He has neither
addressed nor denied the science behind global climate change. Instead, it
appears he is looking for a place to start a civilized debate on what we can do
to protect the future of our planet and our posterity. For this, Dan is
mercilessly attacked and mocked by many who would have us believe they are
open-minded or at least capable of considering thoughts and ideas different from
I am curious to know why the weatherman has a difficult time getting the 10 day
forecast right, but we can predict long-term climate under the guise of
"climate chaos" or "climate change" or "gullible
warming"...oops, that was supposed to be "global warming". I don't see Gore, or Obama, or Clinton, or other liberal leaders
giving up their SUVs, their jet travels, their big houses that burn through lots
of energy. They live the high roller life but ask the rest of the "little
people" to scale it down, significantly. See, I believe they only want us
to stop using fossil fuels, but they don't really intend the same for
themselves. How else would Obama fly all over the world? I don't think
his jets will work with a wind mill attached to the fuselage.And
liberal posters here, who drive their vehicles and live in AC homes, want the
people in India, China, Mexico and Brazil to not even think about attaining the
American lifestyle. I just see and hear a lot of hot air...and its
not from the climate.
@Open Minded Mormon "As an Aerospce [sic] Engineer..."...you
design planes that burn large quantities of fossil fuels. And you do it for
money.@Tyler D "The first step to solving any problem is to
first recognize there is one (and what the causes are)."Now that
you think you know...what is the next step? Have you given up burning fossil
fuels? The High Priests of Climate Science have spoken. Wake up, man! The planet
is stake.Your belief system says you can affect the climate. I think
that's hubris, but it's what you believe.Or do you?Actions speak louder than words, you know.
Let's take an objective look at the 1883 Krakatoa eruption. That one
volcano killed upwards of 300,000 people, obliterated an entire island, changed
weather patterns in the northern hemisphere for over 5 years, lowered the
temperature around 1.2 degrees during that time, etc. I'm pretty sure that
man's puny efforts over time won't do as much environmental damage as
Krakatoa did. Guess what, the earth survived, things returned to normal (as far
as can be determined). Mount Pinatubo's blast in 1991 had some of the same
effects.That's just two volcanos 100 or so years apart. The
earth goes through cycles. The current hysteria about climate change is all
about money. Algore has become a billionare because of the hysteria and his
trading on it.
I want to see how Irony Guy and Blue gripe once the price of a gallon of gas
hits $10.00 per gallon. What are they going to do then?
@Eliot – “Dan is mercilessly attacked… “Because it’s not him most of our comments are addressed to but the
“politicized minds” that continue to let irrationality cloud their
judgment.Just look at the comment directly following yours and tell
me if there is anything rational in that commenter’s denial of climate
change. It’s little more than blind hatred of liberals (with a bit of
added scientific ignorance – weather vs. climate) masquerading as a
reasonable conclusion. If people want to call out liberal
hypocrisy or bad policy or even question some of the more cataclysmic sounding
predictions a few scientists have made, fine – let’s have those
discussions. Nothing should be off the table in a free society engaged in
rational public discourse.But until this denier nonsense is
thoroughly debunked these political voices will continue to drown out any real
discussion… which is precisely the goal for many of them.@NateActually I think the problem will largely solve itself once
alternative energy solutions are price competitive (and a few are really close).
A small carbon tax (done in a budget neutral way) would move us there quickly.
Well written article, Mr. Liljenquist.Humans will adapt to climate
changes, as we always have, and government involvement will do more harm than
good.The earth hasn't warmed at all in the last 15 years.
Climate models have been wrong over 95% of the time.The false
religion of environmentalism will always hang on to any concept that encourages
@Madsen Hall MagicCenterville, UTI am curious to know why the
weatherman has a difficult time getting the 10 day forecast right, but we can
predict long-term climate under the guise of "climate chaos" or
"climate change" or "gullible warming"...oops, that was supposed
to be "global warming". [Because a weather man is looking at
day-to-day temperatures, not year-to-year temperatures. Like looking at
the details of brush strokes of a painting, rather than stepping back and seeing
the whole picture.]======= NatePleasant Grove,
UT@Open Minded Mormon "As an Aerospce [sic] Engineer..."...you design planes that burn large quantities of fossil fuels. And you do it
for money.[Yes, I do. And not, not entirely. Guys like me have
devloped airpanes today that are 200% more fuel efficient than they used to be?
Like making cars that used to get 17mpg, getting 60+ mpg. Oh, and
BTW -- I've also been on the team developing new fuels and certifying both
Commercial and Military jets to run on called Bio-SPK, and FT-SPK -- Algae and
plant based fuels. That technology is already done and is already being used.
Without you ever even knowing it.]
From this and other recent articles I take it that we are (slowly) ending the
era of denial. We are beginning to get to a wider acceptance that we have a
problem.Now we need to deal with the "we can't do anything
about it" issue.No. We absolutely do not need to freak out and
change everything. But we do need to sensibly move forward and make course
adjustments. The sooner the better.
This topic sure does ruffle feathers. Many are quick to poke holes in any view
that fails to entirely agree with leading public “climatologist”
voices advocating climate change theories. The fact remains, none of these
"scientific" reports are entirely conclusive with respect to (a) origin
/ trends and (b) countermeasures that can actually make a difference.The parallels in this article to Thomas Malthus were symbolic in that we
cannot trust populist knowledge so heavily marketed at us from all directions.
They do not have all the answers and most of us are not close enough to the
research being done in the labs. Many claims have been made by government,
business, and special interest groups over the years to sell ideas, but rarely
are these as true as claimed.Leading theories also take God out of
the mix by citing human sources as the sole origin of climate change. This
assumes human byproducts are the only way to explain the acceleration of climate
change patterns. If there is a God and He created the earth, how is it climate
changes aren’t influenced by His hand?
@Madsen Hall Magic"I am curious to know why the weatherman has a
difficult time getting the 10 day forecast right, but we can predict long-term
climate under the guise of "climate chaos" or "climate change"
or "gullible warming"...oops, that was supposed to be "global
warming". "The difference is that with the two we're
asking a different question. For the 10 day forecast we're trying to get
the exact position of weather systems and any look at a long-range spaghetti
plot shows the difficulty of that. For a climate model it's mostly just
averages we're looking for (is it warming? etc) rather than what the
weather will be Dec. 2, 2087.@Nate"Your belief system says
you can affect the climate. I think that's hubris, but it's what you
believe."Acid rain. London smog. Ozone hole. We've done
lots of things that have affected conditions due to various things we've
put in the atmosphere. Is it that outlandish to think that we have influence via
other ones (CO2 CH4) too?
@Nate – “Your belief system says you can affect the
climate.”And there you go again projecting religious
overtones…In fact you have it exactly backwards. The facts
& evidence suggest we are negatively impacting the climate and that if we
can reduce our carbon output to a level handled by the natural carbon cycle, the
climate will eventually clean itself up and return to an equilibrium state
(changing in the future at its natural rate – many millennia vs. a few
decades).So in fact I trust the natural order (God) while you
continue to believe you know better…But again, our objective
should be a rational discourse and instead what we continue to see little more
than irrationality from the far-right. Just scan the comments here for proof
– the denials are all based on scientific ignorance, religious projection,
hatred of liberals, knee-jerk mistrust of experts (because some historical
“expert” was once wrong), appeals to God to explain the natural
occurrences (even after thousands of years demonstrating the abysmal failure of
this approach).When did the party of Goldwater and Buckley become so
illogical & irrational?
I agree with Dan that we need to take a measured response to climate change.
Start small. Maybe we can sell cleaner gasoline in Utah? Maybe start with
mandating that 20% of Utah's power comes from clean renewable energy (gas
doesn't count)? Maybe we can have mileage standards that require, say, 25
miles per gallon for every vehicle sold? That would be small, measured change.
Nothing earth-heaving. That said, I will bet my last dollar that
Mr. Liljenquist would support none of these things. The reality is that for many
people of his persuasion, ANY response to climate change will be vilified as
terrible for the economy, job-killing, too extreme, or not extreme enough to
make a difference anyway so why do it. I challenge Mr. Liljenquist to write in
his next column a list of things acceptable to him that would help us fight
climate change. Isn't being conservative about hedging one's bets?
Doubling down on fossil fuel pollution after 97% of scientists say that is a bad
idea seems pretty radical to me.
I doubt the global warming hype and so does president Obama. Otherwise why would
he fly Air force 1 around so often more than any other president.
“We must be careful not to get caught up in the hysteria and hyperbole
peddled by climatologists who would use their meteorological predictions to
justify wholesale reordering of modern society. Alarmists rarely advocate for
balanced policies.”“Alarmists rarely advocate for
balanced policies.” Uh huh. That’s what the residents of Pompei said
before Mount Vesuvius erupted . . . And then they died.Now
we’re supposed to fear the mythical climatologist boogeyman who will
implement the “wholesale reordering of modern society?” Why fear it.
We should INSIST on it.What is the very worst thing that can happen
if this nation’s government focuses strongly on the development of green
energy? Even if that effort doesn’t result in a significant reduction in
global warming, pollution will be less, people will be healthier, and prodigious
amounts of inexpensive Green Energy will suffuse the land. And NOTHING
stimulates the economy and ensures prosperity like cheap energy.Why
should we accept this so-called “ modicum of risk” when the
corollaries to taking action now will result in the eventual realization of
plentiful clean energy?Continuous “Conservative”
opposition to constructive change is absolutely senseless.
Oh geez- can you ever remember a warmer winter in history? I mean the temps were
just like Spring even in January ....at least that is what lib's would want
you to believe. In truth - the exact opposite is the case. This past winter saw
some of the COLDEST and NASTY-IST weather in a long time nation wide. So what -
golbal warming actually causes global cooling? What a bunch of bubble gum
science hatched by Al Gore and his team of carpet baggers. The sad thing is we
have a president who uses this voodoo science to create enviornment policy.
@patriot"This past winter saw some of the COLDEST and NASTY-IST
weather in a long time nation wide."Warmest Dec-February for
California. It was slightly above average in your state. In the contiguous 48
(not nationwide since Alaska had a warm winter) it was somewhat below average,
yes. Globally it was the 4th warmest January and 21st warmest February. "So what - golbal warming actually causes global cooling?"Nope, which is why it was on the warmer side globally for winters. One
thing global warming might cause though is an increase in the amplitude of the
jet stream in winter and that allows for more regional extremes in polar vortex
positioning (you can kinda see that when we get a top 10 coolest winter for
states like Wisconsin while California sets their warmest winter on record at
the same time). Regardless, it still means warming overall on average globally.
I see that Dr. Dan Liljenquist; Ph.D. of Environmental Studies from Harvard
University is once again lecturing everyone on the specifics of the global
climate change. We should also listen carefully when Dr. Liljenquist speaks. He
is a life-long expert in his field and has no political motivations whatsoever.
@Tyler DBeautiful. So, not only can you change the climate, you can
also effectively govern the economic activities of hundreds of millions of
people. Do you have any other superpowers?Or is it your mythical 97%
scientists and experts who have the superpowers?In either case, the
result is predicable. Worse impoverishment for the world's poor; and little
or no effect on the climate, which will just go on doing what nature does.Seeing that the climate emergency doesn't require you to change any
of your own behavior, maybe it's not that big a deal.@Open
Minded MormonYou're right. I didn't know you were riding
the green-energy gravy train. Much is explained.@Frozen Fractals
"Is it that outlandish to think that we have influence via other ones (CO2
CH4) too?"You might need to spell out the level of influence
you're talking about. Significantly raising the temperature of the entire
globe? Yes, outlandish is just the word.
To patriot: If you look at the global picture you would see that this past
winter was warmer than average. Only in parts of the U.S. was it colder than
average. Even then, Alaska and much of the west coast had a much hotter than
average winters. The U.S. is not the world, and just because it didn't
happen here doesn't mean it didn't happen.
The White House now says climate change. “….. is a problem that is
affecting Americans right now." Scary stuff. But they don’t want
people to be scared, they just want your money to fix it now. That would be
roughly $15,000 per US tax payer through 2030 (Boxer-Sanders carbon tax bill).
And to be fair the 1% should pay a lot more than the 99%. Of course since
climate change is a global problem I am sure the White House is working with the
United Nations on more carbon tax income. Oh, and by the way, on a global scale
a US wage earner making over $40,000/yr will now be in the 1%. A
simple question about the 840-page report with all kinds of references to peer
reviewed scientific papers. Why is it that in Figure 2.3 of the report showing
earth temperature rise over time it cuts off at the year 2000? Don’t the
scientists who put this report together have access to data through 2013? Maybe
they just didn’t want to show that part because it doesn’t go up
like its suppose to, who knows? The calculation models couldn’t be wrong.
@Nate – “In either case, the result is predicable.”So I’ll take your response as a “no” on the rational
discussion thing and a “yes” on the “I’m still smarter
than God with my predictive powers” thing.Seriously though,
you sound like the doom & gloom naysayers who attacked Bush Sr. for his
market oriented solution (cap & trade) to acid rain. They said it would
destroy industry and do nothing to stop acid rain… they were wrong on both
counts.Further, not only did the solution work but industry adapted
quickly and with little (even short term) pain. You’re a free
market guy, yes? Have some faith in the ingenuity of business to respond to
price incentives in a profitable way… they always have in the past, even
while fighting tooth & nail every sensible regulation ever devised. Or do you believe all the “job killing, over regulation”
hyperbole despite American business being the most profitable and cash rich
institution in history.Reached comment limit… no doubt
you’ll have the last word given your multiple logins.
For all who strongly believe in climate change, could you give a date as to when
the catostophic events are going to happen so that we can all plan for it. With
your conviction that this certainty will occur you should have a time frame in
mind.Will each of you please explain all that you have done to counteract
your presence here on earth, please be specific as to your actions.As for
mr, I don't believe that we humans can damage God's earth beyond
repair because he wouldn't let us plus I also don't believe we can
affect Mother Nature as much as you would like us to.I do believe in being
a good steward of the the land, of not polluting and reusing and recycling. I
have bought more fuel efficient vehicles and I travel less do the high price of
fuel.Please explain what you do .
We're pretty sure the climate is warming. We're pretty sure this is
being caused by man's various emissions. And we're pretty sure it is
going to change the nature of the biosphere, maybe big time. We have becomes
masters of our own world. We can create new kinds of life manipulating DNA.
And we are changing the environment. In both cases controls are wanting.
@Tyler D "...acid rain..."Do you not see a difference
between the effects of sulfur oxide/nitrogen oxide on surrounding life, and the
effects of carbon dioxide? Growers pump carbon dioxide into their greenhouses to
aid photosynthesis and help the plants grow."...smarter than
God..." againBecause I predicted that nature will keep on doing
what nature does? That's a strange conclusion.Or is it because
I predicted the failure of your economic scheme? Well, that's an easy one.
I've watched socialism hurt people over and over, in both history and my
own lifetime. It's hardly a stretch to believe that it will fail again.No, here's real hubris:"...this was the moment when
the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal..."
(Barack Obama, 2008, commenting on his own nomination).Megalomania
at it's finest.
So how do we become intelligent consumers of these climate studies? I have a
pretty decent chemistry background for an economics major. I'm going to
take some more physics so I can read some of these papers. For many, since they
don't have physical science backgrounds, these matters are just so much
opinion or ideology.
I just spent 3 days in a workshop that included one of the authors of the
national climate assessment. He is, indeed, a dismal guy like his dismal
report. I found him to be arrogant, closed-minded, and totalitarian. Many
intelligent people have a light about them, but he is just dismal.
A well thought out and well put commentary. I don't think all the facts are
in. Global cooling actually seems to be our current situation. Besides what
can we do with India and China the big CO2 producers. What we can do is
conduct research on alternatives. You want people to be poor? Restrain our
economy by stopping drilling and fracking.
Okay. Never mind all the denying nonsense. Let's look at this from another
angle. Do you have any idea what your lungs look like from living along the
Wasatch Front? If you don't ask someone that works with cadavers. The thing is: We can do better. That's it. That's all
there is to it. We can do better. The burning of fossil fuels, and the
extraction, and processing of them cause serious problems. We can do better.
Per capita, China's CO2 output is less than half of ours. Comparing raw
output is disingenuous political posturing. Do you also consider ourselves ahead
because we consume a fraction of food that China does? What efficient bodies we
Nate, replying to Tyler D.: "Growers pump carbon dioxide into their
greenhouses to aid photosynthesis and help the plants grow."Again with the "CO2 is a plant nutrient" trope. That CO2 is a plant
food does not necessarily make it harmless. Phosphate is a plant nutrient
(normally the limiting factor in aquatic environments). Phosphate in runoff
from Midwestern agricultural fields and detergents going down drains fertilized
Lake Erie in the 1960s, setting off a chain of events (eutrophication) that
nearly rendered it lifeless.What guarantees do we have that CO2 will
only promote favorable plant growth? Studies show poison ivy responds well to
increased CO2. That'll be great. Western mine reclamationists do not
fertilize disturbed lands because experience shows that fertilizer benefits
weedy annuals to the detriment of native plants that are addapted to
nutrient-poor conditions. Will cheatgrass, tamarisk, and tumbleweeds
differentially respond to higher CO2?Warmer winters have allowed
pine bark beetles to expand their range, threatening montane coniferous forests.
Will CO2-enhanced plant growth be offset by insect predation losses?It's not that simple to say that because something is beneficial in one
arena that it is categorically good in all.
Nate, replying to Tyler D.: "Or is it because I predicted the failure of
your economic scheme? ... I've watched socialism hurt people over and
over... It's hardly a stretch to believe that it will fail again."I have re-read all four of Tyler's posts on this thread and have
searched in vain for any advocacy of socialism. Indeed, quite the contrary. In
his two posts addressing economics, he has offered free-market solutions. At
5/15 1:00 p.m. he proposed a small budget neutral carbon tax to help alternative
energy sources be competitive in the market. At 5/15 9:57 p.m. he defended
market-based policies (cap & trade) to control SOx/acid rain and expressed
faith in price incentives to stimulate technological innovation by businesses.
He hardly comes off as a Bolshevik. If that is socialism, then you have a
uber-Ayn Randian view of markets not matched by any reality. Truth is, the US
has a mixed economy, predominantly free market but with limited government
intervention to rein in the negative effects of monopoly, externalities, and
other forms of market failure. Tyler's proposals fall well within the
penumbra of American capitalism.
So Dan sees we have a problem, it is man-made, but doesn't know the answer?
Doesn't sound like a good leader to me. But the answer is kinda obvious: we
invest in new technologies an we fix it. Yes, solar, wind, and other renewables
might be pricey, but the cost is going down. Research in fusion might bring
unlimited power from sea water. Batteries are getting better and cheaper for
electric cars. How do we get China and India to go along? By selling them the
new technologies we invented that cost less then building a coal plant. It takes
some initial effort, but it will yield cleaner air, less dependence on foreign
oil, more high tech American jobs, less global conflict over resources. Where is
the downside? Anyone who can not see that does not deserve to lead.