Andrew Simms really is an ignorant cock isn\’t he?

Everything relies on energy and changes in the industry have impacts that work through the wider economy in complex and interwoven ways.

Okey dokey. Energy is important. We\’d like to get the most we can at the least cost. Just like anything else: and yes, cost does mean all those externalities like climate and so on.

But if we ask questions such as how many jobs can be created, how much carbon can you cut and how much energy do you get back for the amount of energy invested, a mix of renewable technologies will be first in queue

But Andrew: creating jobs is a cost. We do have to pay the people who do the work after all. Plus we lose what they would have produced if they weren\’t turning the hamster wheels. So jobs are deducted from your calculations, not added to them you ignorant bloody cock.

A recent and methodologically more complete analysis than Maugeri\’s by the IMF on the future of oil notes that diminishing increases in production can only be bought at a likely doubling of the price of oil over the next decade. This is likely to usher in the phenomenon of what might be called economic peak oil – \”a pain barrier\” beyond which the level of oil prices has a dramatic effect. The IMF calls it a \”shock\” that will have \”large and persistent\” macro-economic effects.

It\’s possible that that is true. In which case the entire problem is solved, isn\’t it? Double the cost of fossil fuel derived energy and all these green renewables become economic. Thus we need no plans, desire no regulatory or legislative push or force. The market will simply sort it all out for us.

A small suggestion for Mr. Simms. Next time you \”study at\” the LSE try to finish the course. You might learn something to your advantage. You ignorant, ignorant bloody cock.

14 thoughts on “Andrew Simms really is an ignorant cock isn\’t he?”

  1. Mr Simms has probably answered the question you posed below the ASI link
    “Why is it that the environmentalists just won’t listen to the economists on matters environmental?”
    Despite being very keen on figures in isolation, & will bandy about all sorts of numbers to support their cause, they get very uncomfortable when it comes actually to doing anything with them.
    Hence the jobs ‘benefit’. Mr Simms is obviously one of nature’s employees so sees a job as something that puts money into Mr Simms’ pocket. He’s quite incapable of appreciating, for the money to go into his pocket, it must come out of somebody else’s pocket. That would require arithmetic which environmentalists avoid, like dogs do baths..

  2. So Much for Subtlety

    Is Simms the idiot who was doing the “We have 50 months before we fry to death” thing?

    In which case, has anyone asked him what we are up to lately? Is it 30 months yet?

  3. It’s simplistic to describe jobs as a cost. Because we do have high levels of unemployment. What many people are producing instead of turning hamster wheels is nothing at all (apart from the offspring we’ve discussed illiberally).

    Jobs are a cost if they take up skilled labour which would otherwise be doing something else useful. They’re a benefit if they take up unskilled labour which would otherwise be drawing the dole. If, as is likely, it’s a mixture, we can and should relax immigration restrictions on the skilled labour.

  4. Paul. I think you’ve just advocated employing people to dig holes, then fill them in again. Tell me how you haven’t.
    But as green technology is, well, technology. Then presumably it’s skilled people it needs, not hole fillers. So relaxing restrictions on the immigration of skilled labour to compensate for the skilled labour doing makework on green technology must make sense.
    Or something.
    Thank heavens I don’t understand economics.

  5. bloke: I haven’t advocated employing people to dig holes then fill them in again. And the way I did it was by not advocating employing people to dig holes then fill them in again.

  6. I think Paul, reasonably imnsho, left out the word “productive” in his various uses of the word “jobs” in #3. We can all (except Arnald, but he seems to have vacated the premises recently) agree that unproductive jobs (whether it is as per BiS at #4, “diversity co-ordinators” or “5-a-day champions”) are simply a cost. Sometimes, albeit, a necessary one (Trading Standards and any sort of auditor, for example.)

  7. Jobs remain a cost even if they are productive. they may lead to greater benefits in a certain sector than in another but they are still costs.

  8. PaulB,

    They’re a benefit if they take up unskilled labour which would otherwise be drawing the dole. If, as is likely, it’s a mixture, we can and should relax immigration restrictions on the skilled labour.

    Except that any job is going to cost more than the dole. So, if the value of the work isn’t more than job cost – dole cost then it’s not worth doing.

    Dealing with most unemployment is quite straightforward. You have to remove the disincentives to going to work. If people are going to see benefits disappear to the point where they only see the equivalent of £10 for a day’s work (less £2-3 for bus fares), it’s hardly surprising that not going to work is a popular option.

  9. Tim,

    I get your point, but I think you’re wrong, although not for a reason I expect Simms to have had in mind.

    A high price for fossil fuels may accelerate adoption of alternatives, but if you are worried about carbon caused claimte change then the worst that can happen is that we dig up every last bit of fossil fuel on the planet and set fire to it. Then we woudl have done our worst.

    A high price for fossil fuels is going to accelerate the digging up of fossils fuels, or rather expand the set of deposits that are deemed worth digging up.

    A very low price might see us leave some of the stuff where it is.

    This is why I am pessimistic on this front, I am yet to read of a country striking oil and deciding to leave it there.

    Tim adds: Lordy be Luis. You are a post doc in economics. The wedge man, the wedge.

    The tax wedge lowers demand…….

  10. Luis, why on earth would one dig up & set fire to something if the energy could be produced cheaper another way? on that basis we’d be covering the country with windmills like it was in the…….Oh, I see what you mean. As a government inspired project.

  11. ??

    Yes the tax wedge lowers demand, however given a tax wedge, prices vary and my point still holds.

    Should environmental campaigners want to see high oil/gas prices, or low prices? I used to think high prices would “solve” the problem for us by making alternative energy sources economically viable sooner, but now I think the opposite, for the reasons outlined already.

    the quantity of fossil fuels under the ground is exogenous, what matters is how much we find it worthwhile to dig up. If you want to minimize that, you want a low price. A tax wedge would help, sure.

  12. Luis,

    “A high price for fossil fuels is going to accelerate the digging up of fossils fuels, or rather expand the set of deposits that are deemed worth digging up.”

    Why?

    Surely the reason the price becomes high, is the ever increasing costs of extraction (plus tax) as oil becomes harder to find. Why does this increasing cost, leading to increasing price, lead to increased digging up?

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