January 4, 2010

Climate change: crazy, hysterical, knee-jerk, Pavlovian

FROM-Dallas Libertarian Examiner

Garry Reed

Whole Foods’ CEO John MacKey is profiled in the current issue of The New Yorker.

Having gotten the political left riled up with his Wall Street Journal anti-Obamacare article he riles up the folks again with an anti-climate change opinion.

The New Yorker article quotes him as saying “no scientific consensus exists” about climate change and that we shouldn't allow “hysteria about global raise taxes and increase regulation, and in turn lower our standard of living and lead to an increase in poverty.”

No libertarian will be surprised that a writer over at is one of the riled.

After stating, "bluntly, Mackey is crazy" and then categorically asserting that global warming is happening "(it is)" and that the scientific consensus on its cause (human activity, presumably) is "nearly 100%," the writer makes this observation:

"The real hysteria, the knee jerk reaction, here is by libertarians such as Mackey who hear the word 'tax' and 'regulation' and have some Pavlovian reaction in the mind and see a direct line, in all circumstances correlation with lower standard of living and increases in poverty."

But many might see this as a knee-jerk reaction in itself, since anyone who disagrees with anyone can be labeled in exactly the same way, for example: "The real hysteria, the knee jerk reaction, here is by treehuggers who hear the word 'climate' and 'change' and have some Pavlovian reaction in the mind..."

What's the point of calling your opponents names when they are simultaneously calling you the same names?

Here's a thought experiment.

Let's say that in some parallel universe libertarianism is in the ascendancy in philosophy, in politics, in social issues, in cultural and media acceptance, and that human-caused climate change has a 100% scientific consensus.

And then let's say that the worldwide socio-cultural-politico movement to solve the problem is to recognize that solutions come from the proliferation of openly free and prosperous societies where governments are minimized, where human minds and imaginations and achievements are unfettered, where laissez-faire free market individualist capitalism is unchained and only those business and non-government entities and individuals that serve the needs and desires of their customers – greenies and treehuggers and naturalists among them – will survive.

It would be a world where science is free to confront and deal with scientific problems rather than being a government-corporatist handmaiden herded through a cattle chute toward a single predetermined politically defined "solution."

Can't you just hear the crazy, hysterical, knee-jerk, Pavlovian reaction from the collectivist left?

Back here in our own universe, once the politicians and bureaucrats who run the world's massively bloated and coercively self-serving governments realized that climate change could be used as a vehicle to pursue their own personal interests, those being as ever wealth, power and ego fulfillment, climate change ceased to be scientific and became wholly political.

But in the name of "nuance," the treehugger writer offers this crumb to libertarians:

"In fact increasing regulation of environmental pollution (taxing carbon emissions anyone? including negative externalities in prices...) could well lead to an economic situation where less nit-picky government oversight of business activities was needed. Something libertarian's like Mackey ought to like."

In other words, accepting the government's boot heel on our necks will result in more personal freedoms.

Someone is truly living in a parallel universe.


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