The Future of Energy

“Fossil fuel is dead,” declared CJ.

CJ likes to make those kinds of superficially profound statements. We were meeting after a long time. I was in Delhi for a conference and caught up with CJ at the Taj Mansingh Hotel coffee shop. We were discussing the spike in the gas prices.

“Dead or not, seventy dollars a barrel for crude was bad news for India considering that India imports about half of its energy needs. Will slow down the economy a bit, won’t it?” I said.
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The Communists are Pro-poor

Nothing new about the communists being pro-poor. They make people poor whereever they find a way. Today India is suffering the effects of commie policies. Today, 29th Sept, the commies have struck again in India crippling the transportation system. One day’s loss of production and productivity will add about a few million people to the ranks of the poor. How so you may ask? Simple, there are people at the margin. When the country grows poorer by a little amount, the people who were at the margin suffer the consequences of that shock most acutely.

Will those guys–the communist leaders–suffer? No way in hell. They will continue to live comfortable lives knowing that their policies have added to their vote banks. That is the irony of all. The commies create the conditions for their continued victory in the elections by improverishing the country.

May the commies all rot in hell for eternity.

Related Post: The Privatization of Public Sector Units.

Living Within Limits

Garrett Hardin’s 1968 Science paper The Tragedy of the Commons introduced many to the problem implicit in open access to common-pool resources. I believe that every thinking person must understand the tragedy of the commons because living in a world which is getting congested, we have to know the causes of our problems if we have to have a chance at solving them.

Here is Hardin within in his book Living within Limits:

… Professional publicists know there is always a good living to be made by catering to the public’s craving for optimistic reports. Such behaviour finds no justification in the attitude of the Buddha, expressed five centuries before Christ: “I teach only two things: the cause of human sorrow and the way to become free of it.” The present work, though written by a non-Buddhist, proceeds along the Buddhist path — first to reveal the causes of human sorrow in population matters and then to uncover promising ways to free ourselves of the sorrow.

Hearing the Buddha’s statement today many people think, “How depressing! Why accept such a pessimistic outlook on life?” But they are wrong: it is not a pessimistic view if we reword it in terms that are more familiar to our science-based society. Reworded: “Here is something that isn’t working right. I want to fix it, but before I can do that I have to know exactly why it doesn’t work right.” One who looks for causes before seeking remedies should not be condemned as a pessimist. In general, a great deal of looking for causes must precede the finding of remedies.

Reasoning Economically

Or What Economists Do

What the heck do economists do is a question that does not baffle many people because they “know” what economists do. I know it did not baffle me. I was not taught economics in high school, and had an entirely forgettable few lectures ostensibly on economics sometime during my undergraduate in engineering. Given this ignorance, I had a vague notion that economics had something to do with money. I think I conflated economists with finance people and accountants. But I was not baffled because I was too ignorant. Continue reading