Why Capitalists Are Always Suicidal

Dear Robert

The right is almost certainly wrong in their denial of the causal connection between CO2 emissions and global warming. However, they are right about one thing: decarbonization is going to be expensive. There is a reason why fossils fuels became the chief source of energy for mankind. They are very energy-dense, not very expensive to produce and can easily be stored. The enormous rise of prosperity among most humans since 1750 would not have been possible without fossil fuels.

The left often talks about other sources of energy as if they are an economic boon. They are nothing of the sort. If you have to replace your furnace for a green source of heating, then that is a cost, not a benefit to you. It may be a necessary cost, but let’s not pretend that it will make you richer. Similarly, if mankind has to abandon fossil fuels, this will be very costly.

The argument that green energy creates jobs is pathetic, not because there won’t be new jobs in that sector, but because we can’t only look at jobs that are being created but also have to look at jobs that are being destroyed. If coal mines, oil refineries, gas stations, etc all have to close, then that means job losses. This green argument is on the same level of stupidity as the argument that increased military expenditure is good for the economy because it creates jobs in the arms industry and the armed forces. Yes, and it destroys in the civilian sector.

Sooner or later, mankind will have to be weaned off fossil fuels, but let’s not pretend that it will be cheap and easy. regards. James

 

We have to go off fossil fuels no matter the economic costs. This is the insanity of capitalism. Capitalists that we have to blow up the whole damn planet in order to save the economy. In other words, if it’s a choice between a hit to the economy and destroying the planet, the capitalists say, fine, let’s destroy the planet.

Are you starting to see why we socialists hate capitalism so much?

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13 thoughts on “Why Capitalists Are Always Suicidal”

  1. To Rob and James:

    The enormous rise of prosperity among most humans since 1750 would not have been possible without fossil fuels.

    Yep correct.

    However, they are right about one thing: decarbonization is going to be expensive. There is a reason why fossils fuels became the chief source of energy for mankind. They are very energy-dense, not very expensive to produce and can easily be stored.

    I’d say much hinges on advances in storage technology. Build an inexpensive, energy dense battery and a large portion of the carbon emitters (automobiles, buses, and trucks) will eventually go away. (Aircraft would probably still need to use fossil fuels, ships could transition but probably after domestic passenger vehicles..) The other part of the equation is the production of electricity. Much of the world uses coal for electrical generation which has a sizeable carbon footprint. In sunny climates with low rainfall (Southwestern US, Northern Mexico, North Africa, the Middle East, parts of Southern Europe) I see a future where a large portion of electricity will be produced by solar panels (which are dropping rapidly in price and becoming more efficient..). Once again storage of energy is critical (during overcast days, winter, etc..). Much of the Northern hemisphere about 40 degrees of latitude will have a tougher time. Nuclear power may help but there is tremendous resistance (understandably after Fukushima) to broadly implement nukes. The other possibility is importation of electricity from Southern areas but loss the energy with current technology increases rapidly with distance. Perhaps another engineering hurdle.

    Barring an effective transition to post carbon fuel sources, humans could potentially could face a Malthusian future. I have read multiple projections that estimate the world’s population without petroleum or a viable substitute can not be sustained above 2 billion.

    This blog claims, even with the subsidies, that some of the cheapest cars to operate are electrical or hybrid autos:
    http://energyfaq.blogspot.com/2015/02/are-evs-affordable.html

    Granted if everyone starts driving EVs then power grid will have to be upgraded substantially.

    FWIW there are capitalists heavily aligned with a solar / non carbon future. Elon Musk comes to mind as does George Soros and others. I think much of the issue is the old industries versus the new.

    1. The Republican Party is the party of the capitalists in America. Have you noticed how hostile the Republican Party is to AGW? If you want to know what the capitalist sector and Big Business is thinking about anything, just look at the Republican Party. That’s their voice right there. Since the Republican Party is either AGW-deniers, AGW skeptics (same thing) or stopping AGW will destroy the economy types, I would say that the US capitalists and Big Business are dead set against doing anything whatsoever about AGW.

      1. The Republican Party is the party of the capitalists in America.

        US Democrats are pretty capitalist aren’t they..?

        As I see it .. it depends who your sponsor is… Hi-Tech, Wall Street investment banks, big law heavily tilt towards Democrats — Energy, Forestry, Mining heavily tilt towards Republicans.

        http://www.politico.com/story/2015/01/blue-billionaires-on-top-114151.html
        http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2014/jun/23/do-many-billionaires-support-democratic-party/

        Arguably the data above could be skewed but some of richest people in the US are heavy contributors to the Democratic party.

        One of the richest men in the US (often the richest depending upon the year..) is a big Obama supporter:
        http://hollowverse.com/warren-buffett/

        Granted Republicans have several very large PACs but generally they seem to be generally supported by the heads of older industries .

      2. PS, have you noticed how “environmentalist” evangelists use JETS which consume far more fuel than even the evil SUVs?

        And we still have done ZERO to cut back Big Ag. 80-85% of our fuel usage is in agriculture, depending whose stats you take as Gospel, so we’ll have to cut back on farming and let savages die as I hinted at on another thread!
        We’ll solve the pollution and population problems at once!
        (Which is unfortunately necessary as NO AGW guru wants to point to the savages’ mega-breeding as a problem!)

    2. The enormous rise of prosperity among most humans since 1750 would not have been possible without fossil fuels.

      However, they are right about one thing: decarbonization is going to be expensive. There is a reason why fossils fuels became the chief source of energy for mankind. They are very energy-dense, not very expensive to produce and can easily be stored.

      That’s why capitalism, especially in its current globalized, neo-liberal form, is something that can’t be maintained for much longer, especially in light of peak fossil fuels, petroleum being the most obvious example, That’s why opportunities to amass great wealth based on fossil fuel usage will accordingly diminish. Either way of looking @ it, whether it’d be lower fossil fuel use or AGW, something’s going to give, whether it’d be a lower standard of living, de-population, or switching to a non capitalist mode of production or going smaller scale based economics, or all of the above.

      1. Depopulation is necessary, but everyone seems to think that the discovery of oil as a source of mechanical energy “debunked” Malthus, rather than just reset the timer.

        Whites are already cut back to replacement Level or below, who is going to be “racist” and tell nonwhites to stop breeding so much?

  2. Capitalists are suicidal, because they can be sold a pig in a poke.
    Suicide can be sold as a trend, only it can’t SEEM to be short range
    suicide.

    1. You mean like letting in a few MILLION violent, stupid Third World Mega-Breeders, pretending they’re “Only Here To Work”™?

      That has DEFINITELY been sold as a trend, with the added bonus of calling anyone who resists “racist”!

  3. The Industrial Revolution would have been impossible without moral philosophy, and Capitalism began as moral philosophy. Adam Smith’s capitalism is not the dog-eat-dog “capitalism” of today.

  4. There is another reason I believe that our quality of life sky-rocketed. Science, technology and the middle class, as well as philosophy.

    There is little doubt that fossil fuels played a giant role, but one must ask WHY where we able to use fossil fuels for this gain? Interestingly, it is assumed that with fossil fuels, we would develop transport, electricity grids, medicine, go to the moon, computers, internet, etc.

    But it isn’t the fossil fuels alone which did this. It was our ability to do something with fossil fuels, and the underlying philosophy behind our society which made this possible.

    Gunpowder existed in China (it is debatable whether their invention could be called ‘gunpowder’), but they just didn’t carry the concept as far as the West. Likewise with the printing press. Part of this may be cultural and even genetic differences which express themselves differently in terms of cultural development.

    Possibly, if some other society discovered the use of fossil fuels, perhaps they may only have gotten as far as oil street lamps.

    But another major factor was the end of fuedalism, and the rise of ‘traditional’ capitalism, or more accurately, the market system and freedom from debt slavery and bondage. The descendants of those who were feudal serfs were then free to make scientific and medical discoveries, to build the infrastructure that we all benefit from, to develop, invent and innovate.

    Political and social development was critical to the fossil fuel age being a boon for mankind, and not just another neat resource we can’t do much with.

    In Australia today, Capitalist parasites have pushed house prices up so far, that is is impractical for anyone to buy a house to live in. The ONLY people buying houses are investors, who then either sit on them for capital gains, or subdivide. EVERY HOUSE in my suburb which isn’t already a unit, is sold solely for the land, no matter the quality of the house already on it.

    So Greed and “Capitalism” are tearing the city apart, creating an unsustainable development, and destroying the opportunities that people may have to afford a basic home, have security and maybe do something else productive aside from being a mega mortgage mug. They are happy with creating a new class system, where little landlords have debt serfs.

    None of this actually improves the standard of living for all. This is a detriment to all.

    Capitalism is responsible for destroying that which has made us prosperous, and because it appeals to peoples vanity and short sighted greed, it is harming our civilisation, and dragging us back. It seems Capitalists would rather be richer than everyone else, even if it means everyone else is worse off. Allowing those ‘beneath’ you to advance, express their productive potential and have the resources to be productive and creative makes us all wealthier. But Capitalists would rather take that advantage, keep it themselves, and then have it wasted.

    But I must end saying this.

    Today’s “Capitalism”, as swank said, bears very little resembles to what Adam Smith, or even Ayn Rand talked about. Today’s “Capitalism” is crony capitalism. The LAST thing today’s Capitalist wants, is a free market, where houses are traded on their value and where these markets are not manipulated. The LAST thing today’s Capitalist wants, is for their wealth to be commensurate with what they’ve created.

    They’re not really Capitalist. They are neo-feudalists. They want to go back to debt-bondage, even if it means that the fruits of civilisation dry up.

    It seems our world is run by people who would rather be Kings in Hades, than Princes in the Elysian Fields.

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