The Truth

Kevin and Tania O'Neal kevinandt at
Mon Mar 26 20:30:29 CDT 2007

>Alan McKendree
>The Truth
>I still think the Great Swindle is well worth watching and presents
>interesting information.

Kind of like Fox News.
I tend to watch from time to time.
Like not being able to look away from an accident.

>> It's what we call Capitalism run amuck.
>You may call it that.

No, "we" call it that.
Econ majors around the world.
All of us!

>I say we've never had true capitalism.

That is a proven concept in economics.
But, true capitalism never existed anywhere, and never will as long as there 
are humans creating laws to protect the greater good.  That term "morals" 
seems to keep getting in the way.

>Unfortunately, perhaps because the US was founded as a
>capitalist country, capitalism takes the hit for the negative aspects
>in the popular consciousness

Yeah, dopey old us just throw out terms that make things sound 'evil.'
The term capitalism has always meant different things to different people at 
different times.
But, in this discussion, we're talking about the desire to make money 
regardless of the outcome.
So, lets just get past this little distraction and call it what it looks 
like..."Capitalism without a conscience."
Meaning......"let's make matter what."

Ok, now that we're on the same page....
Let's move forward...

>I wish we had more selfishness and greed, properly defined, in the

Thanks for that.
Not sure what "properly defined" means.
Seems if something needs a proper definition, then we're not talking about 
the same thing.
Lets stick with commonly associated definitions here.....for the purposes of 
Humor me!  :-)

>> We do not own this planet.
>> We are care takers.
>For whom?

Come on.  Really?
For my kids, as a start.
Oh, and their kids, and their kids, and so on, and so on, and so on.

>This is probably the heart of our disagreement.  I think
>humans do (or should) own the planet, and shape it toward their own

But, we do not own it.
We inhabit it.
And yes, we shape it toward our own wellbeing, but thank god there are 
people with a ...........<wait for it!!!!> ......with a conscience that also 
ensure the wellbeing of the *planet.*
It's called taking care of your investment for the future.

>That doesn't rule out untouched wilderness, if anyone
>wants to buy and preserve it (as The Nature Conservancy, e.g., is
>doing), but it does imply letting the market determine its value.

The market?
Let's remember that we're talking about Global.............not 
US..........but GLOBAL Warming.
What market?
Are we so arrogant that we the US is now determining Global policy for the 
rest of the world (sorry current War by current administration is an ironic 
coincidence in this discussion)?

>I  also disagree with the idea that everything was just great until
>humans got a toehold and messed things up.

Well, everything (atmospheric chemical balance) *was* just great until the 
industrial revolution and the burning of fossil fuels.

>I don't believe in the
>innate evil of mankind nor in original sin.

Hey, I never said we did it on purpose!
We were ignorant!
But, we are being even *more* ignorant by ignoring the science (that's me 
being nice and not reminding readers of our current administration's 
censoring of scientists and *changing* the science) and warning signs.  Even 
now, Republicans are actively waging a campaign to discredit what the 
scientific community agrees on.  Hell, even Bush now admits it.
I have to ponder how politics got into this?

>Can you do it without making me buy carbon credits in addition to the
>plane tickets if I want to fly to a Who show or 6?

I don't know.
If not, I could care less about your ass or ability to fly to a who show or 
Don't take that personally, but you're nothing "in the grand scheme of 
things" (who content....Pete quote).
Same goes for me though.

>They clearcut it because they valued what could be done with the
>trees more than leaving them in place.

The trees were clear cut to make room for farming.

>The economic growth those
>trees provided helped make it possible for you to live there, 60
>years later (infrastructure and such).

Wrong again.
The clear cutting of VTs forests is seen today as a grave mistake in VTs 
history, and almost destroyed the ability to live here.
While the very short-term plus was land to farm, the not-so long-term result 
was erosion which almost cost this state it's farming culture, and 
elimination of habitat and the animals that lived here which almost drove 
people out of the state unable to hunt for food.
There is still a list of some 120+ species of animals that no longer inhabit 
this state as a result, including the Catamount (mountain lion) and Wolves.
Not to mention the elimination of a renewable resource without any plans for 
keeping that going.
Thank god cooler heads (not so focused on their wallets) prevailed and 
legislation for the greater good was passed.

>A voluntary transaction like that means that not only
>are both parties better off than they were before the trade,

Better off?
This state quickly realized that only a very few were better off.
The rest of the poor schlubs got screwed, and generations to come were 
getting screwed.

>but if the transaction results in a profit the whole system (e.g., the
>people who can buy houses with that lumber in them) has a greater
>standard of living, because profit means an inefficiency in the
>economy has been removed.

You know what I hated about my Econ major in College?
I couldn't wait to get out of the land of theory, and into reality where 
causes have affects, even to the unintended.
It was a major reason why I added my second major in Anthropology.

Alan, this all comes down to Darwin.
If we're not smart enough to see our mistakes and correct them, then we the 
human race will go extinct, and lose the *big* battle....survival of the 

Hey NY!
Start taking swim classes!

Kevin in VT 

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