Saturday, November 29, 2008

Separation of Church and State

Vaclav Klaus, EU President-elect, is an economist trying to figure out what we are giving up to slow climate change which is driving the fundamentalists nuts:
As the global financial crisis takes hold, perhaps people are starting to wonder whether the so-called precautionary principle, which would have us accept enormous new taxes in the guise of an emissions trading scheme and curtail economic growth, is justified, based on what we actually know about climate.


  1. You can find academics on both sides of any debate, it's just that there are many, many more that, through their research, have come to the conclusion that human-caused global warming is real. Comparing "creationists" with "climate alarmists" is patently absurd and completely backwards. "Creationists" hold their beliefs despite all the evidence to the contrary and prevailing scientific opinion. Does that sound like a description of all the scientists who believe climate change is real? No, it sounds like all the climate change "skeptics" who insist they're right because they want to be right, not because they're supported by science.

    Given your beliefs, Dr. Froeb, I would assume that if you acknowledged that climate change was caused by human activity, you would argue that it's a problem the free market could fix better than the government. And that may well be the case, but it won't happen as long as our largest polluters have experts like this to hide behind. The market doesn't provide the proper incentives to innovate then, stalling progress, and resulting in government intervention which results in an inefficient outcome.

  2. efficiency would compare the costs and benefits of climate change abatement procedures; something the creationists reject.

  3. Here's a thought: what if global warming isn't caused by humans, but the current cycle would be disastrous anyway? Maybe we should be spending money to figure out how to damper natural climate cycles?

  4. C makes half the argument. The relevant question is not whether or not climate change is real, it is: what are the likely consequences from continued increases in global temperature? And, do those probability weighted consequences outweigh the cost of preventing them.

    The problem, I, and others, have with "climate fundamentalists" is not their conviction that climate change is real. It is the conviction, based on third, fourth and fifth derivative models, that climate change is THE most important global crisis of our time.

    I wonder what would benefit humanity more: the massive and likely futile, spending to reduce greenhouse gas output to zero, or spending the same amount to prevent malaria or develop heartier food crops.

    I know, for a fact, that several million people will die this year because of lack of clean drinking water and poor access to food. I have no idea what the long run implications of a hotter world will be. And neither does Al Gore.