These opinions warrantied for the lifetime of your brain.

Loading Table of Contents...

Friday, September 19, 2008

Confusing public goods and natural resources

Harland Harrison quotes Daniel Grow:

DG) There is, however, an absence of recognition from the green shift advocates that the private sector can [ALLOCATE ?] public goods efficiently, (DG

If that's what Dan meant, then he should have said "every economics textbook" instead of "the green shift advocates".

HH) Isn't a "public good" is, by definition, something which cannot be sold? Economists call public goods non-rivalrous and non-excludable;  if we have a public good, like clean air, everybody gets it and nobody can be made to pay for it. (HH

Disposing of pollution by emitting it into clean air is rivalrous, otherwise pollution wouldn't be a problem. One or both of you are confusing public goods with natural resources. See

HH) Holtz misconstrues what I write, too. (HH

False.  Your above confusion about whether clean air is a public good is a good example of what actually happens between us.

HH) The green argument often has a certain spiritual dimension, as though industry and pollution should be considered sinful and the green argument should be accepted for moral reasons. (HH

As opposed to us Libertarians, who never moralize at anybody -- especially not at each other.