Sunday, October 7, 2012

"Externalities" (prepare to cry)


"Economists say, if you clearcut the forests and put [the money] in the bank, you could make 6 or 7 percent. If you cut down the forests and put it into Malaysia or Papua New Guinea, you could make 30 or 40 perc
ent. So, who cares whether you keep the forest, cut it down [and] put the money somewhere else! When those forests are gone, put it in fish; when the fish are gone, put it in computers. Money doesn't stand for anything, and money now grows faster than the real world.

Economics is so fundamentally disconnected from the real world, it is destructive. If you take an introductory course in economics, the professor—in the first lecture—will show a slide of the economy, and it looks very impressive. They try and impress you, because they know damn well that economics is not a science, but they're trying to fool us into thinking that it's a real science; it's not.

Economics is [just] a set of values, and [they] use mathematical equations and pretend that it's a science. But, if you ask the economist, 'in that equation, where do you put the ozone layer? Where do you put the deep, underground aquifers? Where do you put top soil or biodiversity?', their answer is 'oh, those are externalities.' Well, then you might as well be on Mars! That economy's not based [on] anything like the real world. It's life, the web of life, that filters water, it's microorganisms in the soil that create the soil we can grow our food in…insects fertilize all of the flowering plants…nature performs all kinds of services…these services are vital to the health of the planet. Economists call these externalities; that's NUTS."

David Suzuki

(★★★★) Must Watch Video ft. above quote:

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