Monday, August 01, 2005


Genetic engineering - the right is generally in favour of biotechnology the left is against it.
I am even more in favour of biotechnology than most of the far right - I see it as the future technology rather like electricity was decades ago. To refuse to use GE is rather like refusing to use electricity or the wheel. You will achieve nothing in stopping its advance and you will at best just doom yourself to third world status until the inevitable failure of your ability to stop it.

Nuclear energy - Nuclear power is somewhat better than coal power and not much worse than hydro power. I suggest using the technology where it is economically feasible. I see no serious risk in doing this. Also I see no reason to ban nuclear warships from any country unless we think they might attack us.

Kyoto - the left is in favour the right is generally dubious about the treaty.

I oppose the treaty not because I don’t believe in global warming - it is a fact - but I think Kyoto is a diversion away from real solutions and thus the wrong way to tackle the problem.

Kyoto is a treaty that slightly slows usage by rich countries - it doesn’t slow usage by poor countries and it doesn’t change the fact that under this system we will eventually burn all the oil. Kyoto is a mixture of socialism and environmentalism and thus is doomed to failure. Environmentalism when done correctly is antisocialism and a person who cares about social aims msut determine how much they are willing to sacrifice their environmental aims.

Kyoto fails because
1) It favours poor countries giving them no limits to pollution at the beginning
2) It slows instead of stopping burning - this means it will just take longer to burn everything
3) it ignores the fact that energy is price insensitive and thus tax is a poor strategy for control - it will take considerable pain to reduce energy usage countries will find it very hard to live up to commitments and the urge to cheat will be huge.
4) it requires everyone to join in - if anyone cheats the system or doesn’t sign up they can enjoy very cheep oil as a result of everyone else not using it -every country that signs up makes not signing up a better deal.
5) It makes enemies of the strongest countries like the USA and in the future will make whichever country is the major economic power the enemy of the treaty (egg china)

So how can you solve all these problems? Well what if you tried to stop the supply rather than the demand? For example when dealing with drugs do you try to stop the drug dealer or the drug customers? Obviously trying to stop the customers would be futile and VERY time consuming - but stopping the dealer is possible 9although still hard).
I suggest a policy ranging from buying of carbon in the ground to preventing countries from exporting oil. This achieves 4 things
1) It is totally neutral - no country is favoured
2) It puts an upper limit on the amount of carbon that can be burnt AND raises prices
3) It is a much more definitive method of control than tax
4) It removes incentives for cheating
5) It reduces the "enemies" of the project to a manageable number and manageable strength potentially the oil producing countries - however one has to ask why being born in a poppy field gives you the right to be a drug dealer?


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