Idiocracy

What the IPCC delivered on Monday was the most massive warning. We have twelve years to save the planet from global warming. And Shell’s response is to avoid discussion of oil and instead suggest we plant trees without providing the slightest indication of where, who would fund it and why countries will be persuaded that they should do this when deforestation has been the trend throughout human history.

What he did not do is discuss the only obvious solution to this crisis. That is to leave oil in the ground. Of course, he can’t do that. His company is valued on the basis that it can burn all the oil reserves that it claims to have. The only slight problem with that plan is that it burns the planet as well. It is simply not possible for him to admit that controlling climate change and the continued existence of his oil company in anything like its current form are incompatible goals.

But there is a solution to this issue. It comes in three parts.

The first part is to ration oil. It can be done directly, or it can be done indirectly, but either way it needs to be done. So, we can ration flights. And car usage. We could even ration some food stuffs – like meat, in particular. We have, of course, done such things before, and I’m well aware that the immediate response will be that there will be a black market. And I agree, there will be. Which is precisely why each person’s ration could be traded. The person who wants to fly a lot could buy the ration of the person who does not want to fly at all. The person who does not have a car should be able to sell their right to have one. And so on. A meat ration might be tradeable as well. The goal is achieved, and virtue would be rewarded. Indeed, the whole policy could be progressive: the sale of rations could redistribute income to those less well off. Externalities could literally be priced.

The second point to note is that rationing would also increase the price of oil: that is what happens when a product is in short supply, which would have to be the case if fixed quotas for production were imposed, as would have to be the case. In other words, oil company values need not be imperilled by this. But they would be required to invest in clearing up their own past messes.

And third, government revenues need not be imperilled. If the oil price increases, so might government revenue.

Oil companies are not valued on the basis of their reserves. Rather, on their likely level of profits over a forseeable time span. Also, they don’t burn oil, we do. They sell it to us so we can burn it.

Rationing the price of oil will reduce its price, not increase. Oil is notably inelastic to price in its demand over the short and medium terms.

The Tuber manages to get one thing right, the solution is indeed rationing. Which is why William Nordhaus has just been awarded the Nobel for suggesting we ration it with a carbon tax. Something he’s been saying for at least two decades now. But then Nordhaus knows something about economics….

40 comments on “Idiocracy

  1. When the self righteous cunt gives up his central heating, his crappy berlingo and his numerous flights to Edinburgh and Brussels then and only then will i take what he says seriously. Fucking hypocritical cunt certainly produces more greenhouse gases than most.

  2. You can almost see him slobbering over the vast expanse of State control over individuals this opens up. Which organisation will enforce this rationing world wide, I wonder? What if the UK enforces this but China says fuck off, thus rendering it meaningless?

    It wouldn’t be an issue, because the control and the compulsion are the drivers, not the climate.

  3. The person who wants to fly a lot could buy the ration of the person who does not want to fly at all

    Some rare self-awareness there – realising that rationed air travel would fuck up his trips abroad to gatherings of fellow minded authoritarians, so slip in this nonsense so he wouldn’t be too inconvenienced.

  4. A black market in air travel would be quite awkward to organise, I think. Air buses taking off in secret from the field at the back of the house?

  5. Not even a moot point!

    Back in 1998, yes that far back, they promised us fire and brimstone by the year 2000.

    Isn’t it 2018? This is so much bull, on top of a pavement pizza….

    Read this year’s GPWF lecture by Prof. Richard Lindzen of the MIT (no exactly a Professor of Practice and not exactly a second-rate poly) for a magnificient, short and understandable take on the science and why CO2 is NOT the question.

    There are people from the UN who are on record as saying that Warble Gloaming is not about the climate. It is about the redistribution of wealth. About as commie as you can get and we are happily going along with the joke. In Spain alone over some 15 years we will have given 200,000 million euros to renewables scamsters.
    https://www.libremercado.com/2017-04-24/la-locura-de-las-renovables-ya-han-costado-850000-millones-y-costaran-115000-millones-mas-1276597478/

    Shoot yourself in the foot? Ha, we are much deadlier than that!

    Oh and don’t forget the recent audit of the numbers they use: h/t Dellers

    https://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2018/10/07/damning-audit-climate-change-scare-based-on-unreliable-data/

  6. I mean it Tim

    I don’t care if the best answer would be rationing through a carbon tax.

    It is all based on falsehoods. Discussing the question is prolonging the lie.

    It is all hypothetical and irrelevant. Nobody among us has the faintest idea of climate.

    CO2 does not drive changes in the climate (the closest relationships SEEMS to be the other way round) and every decision we take on the mistaken premise that it does, is one more nail in the West’s coffin.

    China is building 600 cleaner (not totally clean, I know) coal-fired plants right now. Cheap reliable energy, but just not for us!

  7. That’s not what Nordhaus said at all. He said that a carbon tax will have absolutely no effect, therefore that’s not the way to go. Perhaps the Guardian isn’t the best source of info on climate because they do like to bend all and any facts to fit their template.

  8. No, we don’t need a carbon tax, whatever Nordhaus says, for there are no negative externalities from CO2. If anything they are positive, i.e. greening of the planet. Tim, be careful where the economic gurus lead you. The theory might be sound about taxing externalities but if you’ve got the wrong idea about what externalities there are to tax, then that doesn’t really help. In fact it’s a hindrance because all taxes hinder economic activity.

  9. Nordhaus is wrong. If he takes anything the IPCC says as true. It’s a scam. It’s a Fabian wankfest.

    And: what bilbaoboy said.

  10. Good news: we now have until 2030 to save the earth

    Phew! The dangers of global warming are receding. Admittedly that is not how most news sources are reporting the publication of the latest IPCC report this morning. But it is the logical conclusion of reading coverage of the issue over the past decade.

    According to today’s IPCC report we now have 12 years to avert climate catastrophe. That might not sound long, but it means we are a good deal further away from doom that we were in 2007, when the WWF said we had five years to save the world. The doomsday clock hadn’t moved in 2011 when the International Energy Agency warned us that we had five years to start slashing carbon emissions or lose the chance forever. By last year it had shortened to three years, according to Christiana Figueres, the executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. But now it’s right up at 12 years, presumably meaning that we can pretty twiddle our thumbs until 2030 – a whole 18 years after the WWF told us the world would come to an end if we didn’t slash carbon emissions….

  11. I read someone today saying to ask Greens if they would accept a £1 tax cut in other taxes for every £1 raised by a carbon tax. Watch the wheels turn, grind and stop.

  12. Anthropogenic global warming is shit science. Period. It is simply a device to demand total political control be put in the hands of a select few. Call it totalitarianism, fascism, whatever you like… But don’t call it serious science.

    Rationing will do exactly two things. First, it will make the vast majority of people on the planet poorer. Second, it will make a small, unelected, and unaccountable minority very powerful and very wealthy. It will not make the planet a better, cooler place. It will make it more despotic.

    Seriously, Timmy, when you find yourself in agreement with Spud on anything, it’s time to re-examine the issue.

  13. His house is huge compared to mine, he boasts of flying to far more places than I do. His “carbon footprint” is approaching the size of his ego or ignorance and it dwarfs mine (footprint!).

    Basic rule of modern life – the amount of Green sanctimony emitted is proportional to the conspicuous wealth of the emitter.

  14. At least he accepts that it will lead to a market situation where rations/permits can be traded and converted to cash so that’s most probably a step up for him; though no doubt he’d then want to tax you on any earnings from trading your rations.
    I assume that business will also have a ration otherwise how could people travel for business, employment legislation would most probably preclude making them use personal allowances after all. Could be amusing when most families try and incorporate to generate extra rations for their summer holiday, annual failed venture to explore Mediterranean market opportunities.
    Maybe he will suggest using blockchain technology for this rationing scheme or is he just nostalgic for the old days of rationing books.

  15. ‘We have twelve years to save the planet from global warming.’

    OMG! WHAT IF WE DON’T MAKE IT !?!?

    “Uhhh . . . we’ll give you another 12 years.”

  16. @moqifen

    Have a heart – he’s got Yvette’s 24 Syrians in 3 of them!

    And before you ask, yes he will pay the tax on the rents.

    When he’s found out.

  17. Cut the oil.

    One way to kill off a lot of people. Does RM want to volunteer himself and his friends in order for others to live?
    On this green and pleasant land we cannot grow enough food to feed ourselves never mind transport it to where its needed.

    There’s a wheat field a hundred miles from me. Several days travel by horse and cart and I’d need multiple cart fulls to keep me per year. The horses to pull the carts don’t exist.

  18. @grist – they all fled back to syria – can you imagine being trapped in a house with him? (and not wishing for death?)

  19. Do hope the barking doesn’t keep him awake

    With the voices in his head going 24/7 I doubt he’d ever notice.

  20. Commissar Murphy expects he will have the exemptions due to one of his rank.

    Indeed. All animals are equal. But some animals are more equal than others.

  21. Isn’t there already air passenger duty. I seem to recall that Scotland has virtue signalled and has a higher rate than England. Result: Ryan air has stopped flying from Glasgow.

    We’re also being assaulted from all sides by BBC radio and television about the need for all of us to become vegans. I can see some sort of meat tax coming. It could be dressed up as being about health too.

    As for the repeated warnings which keep getting further in the future. There is a recognised pyschological condition where being proved wrong only doubles down on the stupidity, think Doomsday cults who gather on a hillside expecting the world to end. They still continue believing even when it doesn’t happen.

    This one has a long way to run, and a lot of people are going to die before it’s over.

  22. I agree with bibaoboy & others above. Even discussing a carbon tax is a mistake. Like quibling with the author of one of those phishing invoices that regularly turn up in the e-mail inbox about the size of the bill. The right place for climate change economics is in the waste bin.

  23. 10 years ago we had “100 months to save the world” from climate change. In those days it was a 2 degree C rise we had to stop.

    Now 120 months later we have 12 years to stop a run away 1.5 degree rise.

    You don’t need a PhD to spot bullshit.

  24. I always note the similarities between Global Warbling and the doctrine of Equality of Outcome.

    Both religious views based on blind faith, intolerant of heretics and both require Commissars / Priesthood to make all the decisions.

    Its about power. Nothing else.

    Just like communism, the advocates always think they’ll be the apparatchiks not the hoi-polloi.

  25. When government reduces, say, car tax for “clean” vehicles, lots of people move to the clean vehicles and the government starts to lose revenue. So they then start taxing the “clean” vehicles to restore the revenue stream.

    That’s how it will be with a carbon tax. The tax will incentivise a move away from fossil fuel energy, so the governments will start taxing the replacement energy tech to retain the revenue. Once you introduce this tax on the lifeblood of civilisation (energy) you will never be rid of it.

    Plus governments will still do all the twatish things a carbon tax is theoretically supposed to remove the need for. They’ll continue because they like the control those things bring.

    Due to the reality of human nature, introducing a carbon tax is a really stupid thing to do. But it’s a shiny economic ideology and a stubborn little shibboleth. You are more likely to see NiV admit a man cannot have a baby than see the likes of messrs Nordhaus and Worstall give up this dream.

  26. In my town in New Zealand,Greenpeace are having a stop using oil rally on Saturday.As this is a port handling container ships and log ships I am interested to know what alternative employment they will offer the Wharfies. Perhaps they can all become sailmakers although it may be difficult to fit rigging on top of 5 high containers.I think I will attend to count the number of cars present and ask some pertinent questions..

  27. Noel… cracking find there. The best bit:

    “The most conservative scientific estimate that the Earth’s temperature will rise 1 to 7 degrees in the next 30 years, said Brown.”

    So next year then.

  28. Who can forget the “scientist” who predicted that because carbon dioxide is heavier than air, all the people in low-lying areas would be poisoned (sic) by the gas.

    (And who can grow runner beans in a flat greenhouse?)

  29. Rationing in times of national scarcity and war might be acceptable to the general population. The reaction to rationing in times of plenty will make Greenies wish they still had the likes Trump leading populists as they are dragged off to the gulags.

    As to the IPCC’s timescales:
    5 years – WWF (2007)
    5 years – International Energy Agency (2011)
    3 years (Christiana Figueures of the UN (2017
    12 years IPCC (2018)
    https://twitter.com/FraserNelson/status/1049988358410256384

    And as someone commented: 14 Hours – Flash Gordon

    You could run a lottery based on these predictions.

  30. @Ian Reid, October 10, 2018 at 9:48 pm

    SNP Promised to cut APD. Norwegian launched EDI Hub, mostly EDI-USA. SNP didn’t, Norwegian closing EDI.

    iirc something involving Inverness AP, state & EU

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