Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Climate Change Activist Admits: Being Green “Requires the End of Capitalism” | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on March 27, 2019

Well, at least they’re now being honest about it. A headline this week in The Guardian reads: “Ending climate change requires the end of capitalism. Have we got the stomach for it?”

The article, by Phil McDuff, goes on the discuss the “Green New Deal” currently being peddled in the US Congress, and declares a radical turn toward socialism is really at the heart of saving the planet from climate change:

The radical economics isn’t a hidden clause, but a headline feature. Climate change is the result of our current economic and industrial system. GND-style proposals marry sweeping environmental policy changes with broader socialist reforms because the level of disruption required to keep us at a temperature anywhere below “absolutely catastrophic” is fundamentally, on a deep structural level, incompatible with the status quo.

The “status quo,” we have now is a form of capitalism that is highly regulated by states, manipulated by immensely powerful central banks, and distorted by global NGOs like the World Bank. Nevertheless, this system contains enough of a semblance of market-based freedom that many leftwing ideologues regard it as a type of radical laissez-faire capitalism marked by unrestrained and fossil-fuel powered consumption.

Not surprisingly, they think this system must be abolished.

Unfortunately for the billions of human beings who have benefited from what market freedom exists, the new green-socialist global state imagined by McDuff will undo decades of gains against grinding poverty — gains enjoyed by the world’s most at-risk and poorest populations.

The Decline of Poverty — and Its Effects — In the Developing World

Quality of life indicators have been consistently moving upward in recent decades…

But, pointing to a photo of a low-income women slaving over a wash basin, Rosling asks: “How can we tell this woman that she isn’t going to have a washing machine?”

It’s a good question, and it’s also a reminder that much of the talk over carbon taxes and climate regulations smack of first-world chauvinism. The rich world already has its cars and its washing machines. Sure, a global climate scheme would reduce the wealth of people in the rich world, but the impact in China, India, Africa, and South America — where most live closer to subsistence levels —would be far more devastating.

For many environmentally-minded suburban upper-middle class people in North America and Europe, this is just tough luck and bad timing for everyone else.

Be seeing you




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