Friday, June 10, 2011

Simply Madness - Jonah Goldberg

> The idea behind the steady-state economy should be familiar to anyone who’s heard the lament that capitalism is bad for the environment because it rapaciously consumes resources faster than they can be replaced.
>> It’s an ancient idea, really, a kind of millenarian paranoia that keeps getting gussied up to fit the latest headlines. My favorite example is the 1968 book The Population Bomb by Paul R. Ehrlich. “The battle to feed all of humanity is over,” prophesized Ehrlich. “In the 1970s hundreds of millions of people will starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now.”
>> It was a “certainty” that even in America, famine would claim millions. Ehrlich desperately claims that his predictions were mostly right and that hundreds of millions of people did indeed die of hunger over the ensuing decades. That’s not exactly true. Global population has doubled, and the amount of food available for humanity has grown as well.
>> But, yes, people have died of hunger since 1968. Why? It wasn’t because markets failed or resources ran out. It was because government planners failed. That’s why countries such as India and China have introduced markets: Their central planning was killing their own people.

Posted via email from The Blue Pelican

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