"System change is now inevitable. Either because we do something about it, or because we will be hit by climate change. '...

"We need to develop economic models that are fit for purpose. The current economic frameworks, the ones that dominate our governments, these frameworks... the current economic frameworks, the neoclassical, the market frameworks, can deal with small changes. It can tell you the difference, if a sock company puts up the price of socks, what the demand for socks will be. It cannot tell you about the sorts of system level changes we are talking about here. We would not use an understanding of laminar flow in fluid dynamics to understand turbulent flow. So why is it we are using marginal economics, small incremental change economics, to understand system level changes?"

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Newt Gingrich???

of all people, says some reasonable things and comes across like a responsible conservative, a species I had considered practically extinct.

Not only is he talking about taking the nexus of environmental threats seriously, he said stuff very reminiscent of Gore's "Assault on Reason", which of course any real conservative would do, if there were any of them left. Gore's position in that book, with which I wholeheartedly agree, is fundamentally Tory. Any so-called conservatives who have a shred of seriousness and decency left ought to embrace that book wholeheartedly. (See also Krugman on media discourse.)

Of course Gingrich doesn't admit to agreeing with Gore, but still it's refreshing to hear critiques from the right of the idiotic way in which public discourse takes place these days.

I remember being very depressed when Gingrich took over the congress and, I thought, started torpedoing Clinton in the most cynical imaginable ways. Did I misjudge him then, or is it just that anybody looks good after six years of the Peachfuzz administration?

Shedding some light on this question, David Roberts is extremely skeptical of Gingrich's sincerity.

It's true I didn't hear Gingrich renouncing his past, but maybe that isn't the most useful thing he might do at this point. Politicians will be politicians, I suppose. On the whole it's nice to hear someone like Gingrich talking something resembling sense.


mz said...

I haven't studied it exclusively, but how are you going to prevent the tragedy of the commons when you go for deregulation?

If the fastest grabber makes the most profits AND reduces others' future potential for profits, then the long term planners and savers are left empty handed.

That's what deregulation over everything -people don't understand.

Co-operation and discipline is useful here, it enables long term progress. And there must be a mechanism for that. The mechanism is laws and regulations.

Sometimes it's good to deregulate, it makes stuff more efficient. But it's not always good.

uBeR said...

Here, Newt talks about "green conservatism."