Thursday, October 16, 2014

Salerno on the Latest Winner of the Economics Nobel Prize

Praise from across the journalistic and economics worlds have been heaped upon the awarding of this years Nobel Prize in economics to Jean Tirole, a French game theorist who has specialized in finding market failure in large businesses, especially if they are vertically integrated.

In the Financial Post, economist Joseph Salerno says "Au contraire." He notes:
Tirole was awarded the Nobel Prize for concocting complex technical solutions to what Austrian School economists have long known and taught to be pseudo-problems for a dynamic market economy driven by rivalrous competition among entrepreneurs eager to earn profits by anticipating and serving ever-changing consumer demands.

Friday, October 10, 2014

EPA's Power Plant Rule Is Too Draconian

. . .And will do much more harm than good. That was the primary message of a panel I was a part of who sat down with some of the editors of the Harrisburg Patriot-News on Wednesday.

You can read about our meeting in the paper's very fair write-up, "Pa. industry leaders take aim at EPA's power plant rule: Six takeaways"

As the piece notes, "John Pippy of the coal alliance and Dave Taylor of the manufacturers' group visited the PennLive editorial board Wednesday, with Shawn Ritenour, professor of economics at Grove City College, to voice their concerns with EPA's plan."

The EPA wants to reduce CO2 emissions from coal-fired electricity plants by 30 percent by 2030. Doing so requires draconian measures that are not even possible with current technology.

Our main points were as follows:
  • What the EPA wants power plants to do is unrealistic and unachievable and will kill off coal plants.
  • Renewable energy can't replace the power supplies that will be lost if EPA's rule takes effect.
  • The EPA is not giving due credit for reductions in carbon pollution made since 2005.
  • The EPA regulations provide little if any benefit to the environment for way too many bucks. And that does not even consider the moral issue surrounding the encroachment of private property
  • A tax on carbon pollution is not a good alternative, either. I made the point that, among other weaknesses, any carbon tax would be arbitrary and, therefore, unsuited to accomplishing what its proponents want it to.
You can read the entire piece by clicking here.