At Cap X
That’s why, if you go and look at mineral reserves, you’ll find we’re going to run out of everything in 30 – 50 years. And that’s because the best definition of a reserve is what we’ve prepared for us all to use in the next 30 – 50 years. To complain about this is like complaining that the food in the fridge is about to run out – without referring to the supermarkets and food production system which exists to fill up our fridges again.
It’s this mistake which leads to the insistence that we must recycle everything for we’re going to run out. We’re not. That underlying contention is simply wrong.
At the ASI:
One of the sillier critiques of free market economies is to look at the conditions for perfect competition, note that perfect information is assumed and thus declare that of course a planned economy is better as we cannot meet the necessary conditions for a market one.
But, of course, if we don’t know then how can we plan?
Further, as Ridley points out, if we don’t know what the new technologies will or can do then how can we plan what to do with them? This accords well with William Baumol’s more formal investigations of invention and innovation. The state, planning, can indeed invent as can markets. But innovations are something the planned economy simply cannot handle while they seem to be the very essence of market systems. That is, innovation appears to be an emergent phenomenon from people playing around, as they wish, with those inventions. That playing around being something which a planned system cannot, by definition, do.
In The Times:
At heart, the objection to tax havens and competition is the desire that we be subject to monopoly control by a taxing institution. As everyone from Marx to Friedrich Hayek has pointed out, monopoly is injurious to all of us out here – hence why we want multiple jurisdictions so that competition reduces the injury to individualsand the wider economy.
The other extreme would be as with the recent Saudi Arabian confiscation of rich people’s assets, possibly just because it can be done. Competition in the rule of law is as with that in tax; something that protects us from the state.