Med COIN-Bloggen kommenteres løbende på dagsaktuelle emner. Vi vil søge at præge debatten, sådan at de skjulte konsekvenser ved nye former for indgreb, afgifter, skatter, forbud bliver gjort mere synlige.
In April, the Polish Academy of Sciences published a document challenging man-made global warming. In the Czech Republic, where President Vaclav Klaus remains a leading skeptic, today only 11% of the population believes humans play a role. In France, President Nicolas Sarkozy wants to tap Claude Allegre to lead the country's new ministry of industry and innovation. Twenty years ago Mr. Allegre was among the first to trill about man-made global warming, but the geochemist has since recanted. New Zealand last year elected a new government, which immediately suspended the country's weeks-old cap-and-trade program.
The number of skeptics, far from shrinking, is swelling. Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe now counts more than 700 scientists who disagree with the U.N. -- 13 times the number who authored the U.N.'s 2007 climate summary for policymakers. Joanne Simpson, the world's first woman to receive a Ph.D. in meteorology, expressed relief upon her retirement last year that she was finally free to speak "frankly" of her nonbelief. Dr. Kiminori Itoh, a Japanese environmental physical chemist who contributed to a U.N. climate report, dubs man-made warming "the worst scientific scandal in history." Norway's Ivar Giaever, Nobel Prize winner for physics, decries it as the "new religion." A group of 54 noted physicists, led by Princeton's Will Happer, is demanding the American Physical Society revise its position that the science is settled. (Both Nature and Science magazines have refused to run the physicists' open letter.)
From: The Climate Change Climate Change
by Kimberly Strassel
Seen on: Time to re-engage debate on global warming science
COIN har fået tilsendt to aktuelle bogudgivelser fra den noget større tænketank CATO i USA. Desværre bliver bøgerne ikke bliver læst og anmeldt lige med det samme. Da de virker interessante også i en dansk sammenhæng skal de imidlertid nævnes her.
Den anden er The Cult of the Presidency: America’s Dangerous Devotion to Executive Power - Examines how Americans have expanded presidential power over recent decades by expecting solutions for all national problems, concluding by calling for the president’s role to return to its properly defined constitutional limits.
Sidstnævnte er kronologisk opbygget, og efter de første læste sider er det noget, der må anbefales enhver der interesserer sig for amerikansk forfatningshistorie - og for betydningen af de amerikanske forfatningsdokumenter, når det gælder sikringen af de individuelle frihedsrettigheder i USA.
Ovennævnte er også relevant i den aktuelle traktatdiskussion, eftersom den netop afviste EU-traktat grundlæggende er/var en forklædt socialdemokratisk forfatning. Fokus i The Cult of the Presidency er blandt andet på betydningen af ideer, som drivkraft for historien hvilket er en af grundene til at der er tale om en spændende udgivelse ift. forfatningsspørgsmål. - Læs i denne (idé-)sammenhæng også weekendens klumme på 180grader.dk: Christopher Arzrouni: - Aamund - en borgerlig ny-marxist.
Is it really so difficult to understand that mandating a huge increase in corn production (with subsidies) for ethanol will result in less corn for other uses, less land for other crop production (and wildlife habitat), and hence higher food prices? Congress had the choice of opening only a couple of thousand acres of the barren tundra in the north slope of Alaska (ANWR) for more oil production, or insisting we all use ethanol.
The amount of land required to replace the gasoline the government will not allow to be produced on this tiny piece of land in Alaska by growing more corn in the Lower 48 (about 40,000 square miles) is larger than the total land area of Indiana or Maine. ANWR could produce about a million barrels of oil a day, which would translate into 7.7 billion gallons of gasoline a year. It would require about 3.9 million bushels of corn to obtain the same energy content from ethanol.
- Read more in Energy Follies by Richard Rahn.
It is an impressive testament to the abiding affection and political influence of former President Ronald Reagan that the fate of a controversial treaty now before the U.S. Senate may ultimately turn on a single question: What would Reagan do? - As we had the privilege of working closely with President Reagan in connection with the foreign policy, national security and domestic implications of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (better known as the Law of the Sea Treaty or LOST), there is no question about how our 40th president felt about this accord. He so strongly opposed it that he formally refused to sign the treaty. He even sent Donald Rumsfeld as a personal emissary to our key allies around the world to explain his opposition and encourage them to follow suit. All of them did so at the time. - Read more in Another U.N. Power Grab By William P. Clark and Edwin Meese in The Wall Street Journal today.
See also articles:
Myths and Realities Concerning UN Law of the Sea Treaty by Lawrence Kogan, and the announcement Abuse of constitutional powers.
"I know no safe depositary of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power." --Thomas Jefferson to William C. Jarvis, 1820. ME 15:278
THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS IS SOON LIKELY TO APPROVE, WITHOUT ADEQUATE PUBLIC DEBATE, RATIFICATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS LAW OF THE SEA CONVENTION (UNCLOS), THE LARGEST AND MOST COMPREHENSIVE INTERNATIONAL REGULATORY TREATY EVER CONCEIVED BY MANKIND.
THE UNCLOS WILL PROVIDE THE UNITED NATIONS AND FUTURE U.S. GOVERNMENTS WITH LEGAL JUSTIFICATION TO INVEST THEMSELVES WITH EXPANSIVE NEW POWERS TO IMPOSE COSTLY AND BURDENSOME NON-SCIENCE AND NON-ECONOMICS-BASED EUROPEAN ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATIONS (HIDDEN TAXES) UPON ALL AMERICANS THAT WILL SEVERELY IMPAIR THE USE & VALUE OF THEIR PRIVATE PROPERTY.
WHAT HAVE YOUR ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES BEEN DOING TO ENSURE THAT YOUR CONSTITUTIONALLY-GUARANTEED PRIVATE PROPERTY RIGHTS, AMERICA’S NATIONAL SOVEREIGNTY AND AMERICA’S MILITARY CAPABILITY TO DEFEND ITSELF WILL BE PROTECTED, AND NOT DELEGATED TO AN INTERNATIONAL UNELECTED INSTITUTION IN WHICH THE U.S. HAS ONLY ONE VOTE?
The prior message was a public service announcement from the Institute for Trade, Standards and Sustainable Development. The Institute for Trade, Standards, and Sustainable Development is an independent, not-for-profit, non-partisan educational organization, based in Princeton, NJ, USA. Its charitable mission is to promote a positive paradigm of sustainable development consistent with private property, free market and WTO rules. The ITSSD examines evolving international law and policy as it relates to trade, science, technology and sustainable economic freedom and development around the world. ITSSD research is accessible on its website at: http://www.itssd.org and on its blog, the ITSSD Journal, at: http://www.itssd.blogspot.com .
The lack of truth and public transparency surrounding the LOST [UN Law of the Sea Treaty] are hard to ignore. By ratifying the LOST, the US would unleash Europe’s PP [Precautionary Principle ] and subject US military and economic sovereignty to eventual UN dominance and control. Therefore, the US Senate must publicly review the LOST’s largely hidden environmental regulatory agenda BEFORE it renders its advice and consent. Only by exposing the LOST’s deep dark caverns to the light of day in public hearings convened by the various congressional committees possessing oversight jurisdiction, as had recently occurred in connection with the illegal immigration bill, would the US be able to avoid such a disastrous outcome. Anything less would shortchange Americans and violate their cherished US constitutional right to due process.
- Lawrence A. Kogan and J. William Middendorf in The ‘LOST 45’ UN Environmental Restrictions on US Sovereignty.
[The US] Congress should have already learned about the market distortions and personal hardships triggered ‘across the pond’ by Europe’s environment-centric energy policies. Crafted by unelected bureaucrats, environmental activists and socialist party ‘kingpins’ and supported by most European leaders, such policies have focused more on promoting sustainable development via consumer and business sacrifices than on securing desperately-needed regional energy supplies. Ordinary Europeans have been denied a broad portfolio of cheaper local energy options that include newly drilled oil, gasified and liquefied ‘clean’ coal, and nuclear, hydro and geothermal power. Instead, they have been provided ‘bird-slicers’, solar panels, natural gas pipelines, severe energy-use restrictions and poorer performing ‘energy efficient’ cars and appliances. The result: lower economic productivity and innovation rates, higher petrol, manufacturing, services, food, housing and transportation costs, and greater reliance on opportunistic foreign oil and gas resources.
Read more in ITSSD press release: Congress Should Do its ‘Homework’ Before Adopting Euro-Style Energy/Climate Change Rules (from june 21th)
See also: Europe’s Warnings on Climate Change Belie More Nuanced Concerns by Lawrence A. Kogan
[A] review of France’s constitution is [...] instructive since it reveals the current status of private property rights in Europe. The French Constitution was recently amended in 2005 (for the 19th time since 2000) to include a new environment charter that provides French citizens with the ‘positive’ “right to live in a balanced healthy environment”.[...] The charter contains a series of environmental rights and responsibilities[...]that are consistent with those already found in European regional law. For example, the charter’s right of access to environmental information [...] is similar to that provided under the UN’s regional Aarhus Convention.[...] The Environment Charter is therefore likely to suspend the requirement of legal ‘standing’ to enable any member of the public “affected or likely affected by, or having an interest in environmental decision-making”[...] to demand an assessment, and then challenge the potential environmental impacts, of proposed economic activities to be undertaken on privately owned property.
Considering the unsettled political and legal order within a motion-bound European Union uncertain of its own identity and destiny,[...] all Americans, especially those serving in the U.S. Congress, should therefore be leery of Europe’s prescribed collectivist regulatory solutions to exaggerated global threats such as climate change.[...] European aspirations for a greater role on the world stage are admirable but evidently premature. Europeans would be wise to tend to their internal housekeeping affairs before embarking on ambitious global projects that are clearly beyond their current competencies and capabilities to achieve. This is likely to be the greatest contribution that Europe can make to U.S. national interests [...] and to the world at large.
In America today most of the older generation — and many of the young—stand appalled at the nihilism of the self-styled Now Generation and its demands for unattainable reforms, or merely for the sheer destruction of whatever is established.
But the cynicism, nihilism, and revolt of "youth," and even of some of its parents, are the result of a common cause. In the last generation politicians and governments have been promising the voters that they could not only bring perpetual full employment, prosperity, and "economic growth," but solve the age-old problem of poverty overnight. And the end result is not merely that accomplishment has fallen far short of promises, but that the attempt to fulfill the promises has brought an enormous increase in government spending, an enormous increase in the burden of taxes, chronic deficits, chronic inflation, and a constant loss in the buying power of the people's earnings and savings. "Social Security" has brought an ominous increase in social insecurity.
Another result of the promise of instant utopia has been a gigantic growth of governmental power—of interference in the details of everybody's business and everybody's life. As this power has increased, it has also become concentrated in fewer and fewer hands. In America the towns and villages have steadily lost power to the States, the States to the Federal Government, and Congress to the President.
One mark of the welfare state everywhere has been the gathering of power into the hands of one man. This is no mere unfortunate coincidence; it has been inevitable. Thirty-six years ago the eminent Swedish economist Gustav Cassel explained in a prophetic lecture how "planned economy," long enough continued, must lead to despotism:
The leadership of the State in economic affairs which advocates of Planned Economy want to establish is, as we have seen, necessarily connected with a bewildering mass of government interferences of a steadily cumulative nature. The arbitrariness, the mistakes and the inevitable contradictions of such policy will, as daily experience shows, only strengthen the demand for a more rational coordination of the different measures and, therefore, for unified leadership. For this reason Planned Economy will always develop into Dictatorship.
The succeeding chapters of this book explain in detail the ideology and methods behind the present inflation and aggrandizement of State power, the conditions to which it has led and, finally, the solutions we must apply if this sinister threat — not only to the economic future of the American people but to the future of civilization itself — is to be averted.
Henry Hazlitt 1969
See also George Reismans blog: An Update to Henry Hazlitt’s “Uruguay: Welfare State Gone Wild”
Well, my friend, you hit the nail upon the head when you said I had not sense enough to understand the Constitution. I intended to be guided by it, and thought I had studied it fully. I have heard many speeches in Congress about the powers of Congress, but what you have said here at your plow has got more hard, sound sense in it than all the fine speeches I ever heard. If I had ever taken the view of it that you have, I would have put my head into the fire before I would have given that vote; and if you will forgive me and vote for me again, if I ever vote for another unconstitutional law I wish I may be shot. - Læs hvad bonden sagde til Crockett i fortællingen Not yours to give (Det handler om ejendomsret).
Gratis bøger og essays fra the Foundation for Economic Education (hvorfra citatet er hentet)
Would you be outraged if you knew your taxpayer dollars were being used to lobby for more government subsidies and higher taxes? Well you should be, because that is exactly what is happening.
Over the years there have been many cases of government agencies lobbying Congress for more funds and/or higher taxes. As a result of earlier abuses, Congress prohibited this misuse of taxpayer money but, unfortunately, the practice has not gone away. Over the last several weeks, a couple of glaring examples have come to light...
- Det skriver Richard Rahn på www.coin.dk/english.
Et af eksemplerne Rahn benytter handler om flere penge til det amerikanske og statsejede jernbaneselskab Amtrak.
En gang var jernbanerne en helt central del af den amerikanske infrastruktur - af den simple grund, at man kunne tjene penge på at investere i området; der eksisterede med andre ord et stærkere profitencitament. Sådan er det ikke længere. - Igen er der tale om problematikker, vi kender herhjemmefra.
Læs artiklen - Paying to be coerced.