Midnight Oil

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Jim Macdonald jsmacdonaldjr@yahoo.com
Sun, 17 Nov 2002 10:59:09 -0800 (PST)

I work for an evit think tank that works on the global warming issue, and Bjorn
Lomborg, the leftist global warming skeptic, is the darling of right-leaning think
tanks these days (or he was about a year ago, don't hear his name as much the last
several months).

His argument is basically that the money is better spent on other risks that we have
more knowledge of, and so it's not so much, I think he would say, that he's a
reductionist about the precautionary principle, so much as he thinks there are other
more pressing risks for which the evidence is more clearly known.

I'm in a bad position to speak on this issue.  I've been so pumped full of the
science of the skeptics and have read very little of the arguments of the proponents
because of my job, I don't know what to think.  However, I am somewhat familiar with
Lomborg, and I believe in his heart he thinks he is promoting interests more
pressing to his own version of socialism.  And, having seen him on panels with
opponents, he's not a pushover.  The guy knows his stuff, and he's more than someone
who has found a way to sell his books.

That's probably why I don't look at global warming from a scientific perspective.  I
look at it from an ethical perspective, but probably in a way different from the
precautionary principle.  What is this stuff we are pumping into the atmosphere?  It
seems there is something in our utilitarian psyche that makes us do that, and it's
that utilitarian psyche that hurts us.  Everything is reduced to numbers, atomic
quantities, and treated as such.

But, anyhow..."Concrete, you don't save my soul"


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