Saturday, June 25, 2011
IF Scotland is to bet that oil prices will rise and bring our exchequer back into the black (Comment, 23 June) we are taking the short end of a dangerous bet
Julian Simon, an economist who was an enthusiast for human progress once famously bet Paul Ehrlich, who has achieved guru status among "environmentalists" by spending the past 40 years predicting dozens of catastrophes, all of which have failed to happen, that prices of raw materials, including oil would fall in real terms. Mr Simon expected to win because he believed human technological progress is the true source of wealth. Mr Ehrlich enthusiastically took on the bet.
Mr Simon won easily. All the raw commodity prices listed, not just oil, fell compared to incomes. Learning from this, neither he nor any other "environmentalist" has ever been willing to repeat the bet, although their propaganda still assures us the dooms from "peak oil" and other raw material "peaks" are shortly due.
If the SNP wants Scotland to hope for eco-catastrophe to save us it is in for a disappointment.However I did make a mistake here, working from memory. The commodities Ehrlich chose were all metals and did not include oil. Presumably he thought oil was not one of the materials most certain to become scarce. This does not affect the principle which applies to any commodity.
However it has been picked up by someone in comments who said that (a) I was deliberately lying about oil & (b) that I was deliberately lying about Enrlich having refused to renew the bet - that he had indeed offered to do so and Simon refused. Since the commenter says they had checked wikipedia on this the latter is clearly a deliberate lie. Ehrlich most definitely refused to repeat the bet. He did offer a completely different bet based not on overall wellbeing but on a small number of cherry picked phenomena (eg that SO2 emission would rise in Asia, where China is industrialising but quite specifically refusing to suggest they would rise planetwide)
The commenter has challenged me to dispute his lie but despite what I think is his honest mistake of saying I sometimes comment on the Scotsman online, I am censored from their site. I have asked the Scotsman to make this clear with this email, which journalistic integrity, if it exists, would require them to do. I will say if they do act on this.
Slioch here asks me to reply or be assumed wrong. The Scotsman editors should either remove that challenge or, preferably, add a comment explaining that, since I mentioned the fact that our "police" (formerly the KLA) had been dissecting living people to sell their body organs you have decided to censor my commenting.Julian Simon, the other guy isn't worth a photo
My allegation, which was at no time disputed, has recently been accepted as true by the Council of Europe. http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/specials/kosovo/Council_adopts_Dick_Martys_Kosovo_report.html?cid=29328740
It continues to be largely censored by the British Media and indeed yourselves.
UPDATE Rge Scotsman have removed post #4 the one challenging me to answer nut not the earlier posts or saying why, which produces a weird effect