16 May 2010

Flashback: 9 -- 15 May 2009

Posts from a year ago that deserve another look...

BEST: The West's Achilles Heel -- a failure to manage groundwater. Why? David Crane (special adviser to Gov. Schwarzenegger) will tell you that farmers punch above their weight; they use 80% of our water to produce 2% of our economic output.

The Story of Stuff -- she's wrong about capitalism and consumption, but not waste. Speaking of that, in Life Cycle Assessment vs. Green Pricing, I favor the simplicity of prices over the complexity of LCA. Engineers will not be pleased.

Sacramento's Pee -- a guest post defending sewage wastewater discharges that I wouldn't defend.

BEST: Do Something! about carbon and climate change, but don't forget that politics money drives that debate.

No, I Do Not Think They are Idiots -- a reporter sets up a phony "debate" between Peter Gleick and me. Peter says that I think "markets are perfect." He's wrong, twice.

Tom Graff and EDF -- his exit interview, the politics of EDF and salt in the soil.


  1. Your Flashbacks are a great idea. Blogs aren't like websites where exploring the site comes more naturally, so Flashback is a great way to reveal stuff that's still relevant.

  2. Oh boy, The Story of Stuff! And that implicit assumption that government is here to solve all problems and capitalism fails but government, as the problem solver, never fails.

    They also say Annie Leonard is Green Peace. No, no! Trace that video’s origins a little further and you will find some very interesting players beyond Green Peace.

    Dogma Annie knows just enough about economics to be dangerous. Believe she could have a roaring debate with my Basset hound Boudrou regarding economic theory.

    Regardless of the socialist tenets of The Story of Stuff, let’s go back in time to neoclassical economics and the advent of the Keynesian Happy Meal Menu. Neoclassical economics spent its time on the producer/supply side of the equation. Keynes spent his time on the consumption side of the equation. Bet Annie has pondered this item. Not.

    Annie likely loves the infamous neo-Keynesian “bucket diagram” of consumption. That government intervention aspect likely warms Dogma Annie’s toes. That recession is a bucket not full to the brim so government must expand consumption. Of course the neo-Keynesians always leave out that the bucket is simultaneous leaking private capital formation, the creator of long term private sector jobs, as Keynesian government deficit spending is expanded. And that pesky tax increase after recession ends to pay back that deficit spending causing the bucket to return to an unfilled state. YYou know that absolute waste of time to begin with the unfilled bucket and then return to the unfilled bucket. All the while attempting to increase that Leonard demonized “consumption”.

    Annie Leonard should try reading a section of the Declaration of Independence. You see those folks back then had a little problem and they bothered to jot it down in the Declaration of Independence:

    (1) our government continues to erect “a multitude of new offices”,

    (2) and send “swarms of officers to harass our people and eat out our substance”.

  3. JWT emails: "A book review in this week's Economist has these sentences, "Mr.Collier is an economist and it shows. His neat geometrical analysies come straight from the greatly simplified facsimile of reality that professional economists inhabit."

    Which, of course, is why their theories are mostly bullshit.

    But the same comment applies to Annie Leonard."

  4. @WEH - not sure that Leonard has a clue of what you are saying, but I'll bet she likes gov't solutions...

    @JWT -- Collier can connect dots; Leonard just throws dots around....


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