Wednesday, April 22, 2009

What About Capitalism Day?

Of the estimated 1 billion people who will observe Earth Day worldwide this year, few will know about the progress that has been made. Fewer still will know how it was made. The media, uninterested in looking at the real story, will simply credit the environmental movement for the improvements.

Buried beneath all the badgering and fear-mongering about lavish Western lifestyles is a reality that the stuck-on-green left won't talk about and the average American isn't aware of: The world, especially in developed nations, is a cleaner — and greener — place than it was when the environmental movement began.

Topping the agenda of today's environmentalist groups is the pulling down of market economies, the raising up of central planning for egalitarian goals, forced lifestyle changes and the vilification — in hopes of the elimination — of signs of wealth.

None of these advance the planet's environmental health. But capitalism has. Through wealth generated by the free market, we have enough resources to move beyond the subsistence economies that damage the environment, enough disposable income to fund clean-up programs, enough wealth to scrub and polish industry.

Only in advanced economies can the technology needed to recycle hazardous waste or to replace dirty coal-fired power plants with cleaner gas or nuclear plants be developed. That technology cannot be produced in centrally planned economies where the profit motive is squelched and lives are marshalled by the state.

There's nothing wrong with setting aside a day to honor the Earth. In fairness, though, it should be complemented by Capitalism Day. It's important that the world be reminded of what has driven the environmental improvements since Earth Day began in 1970.

Investor's Business Daily Editorial


At 4/22/2009 9:43 AM, Blogger Realist Theorist said...

"Capitalism Day" is June 7, 2009.

At 4/22/2009 9:57 AM, Anonymous Jim Glass said...

Earth Day should be Capitalism Day!

As capitalism advances economic growth, consumption of natural resources declines.

Example: USA 1965 to 2005, and the 32 most-consumed minerals (from "iron ore" on down).

[] Per capita GDP up 126%.

[] Per capita consumption of the 32 minerals, down 41%.

[] Absolute consumption of the minerals down 9% -- even as GDP rose by 244% and population grew by 53%!

Here's the full information, along with the bonus story of how the amount of trash per capita in New York City has declined by more than 50% since 1940 as income per capita has more than tripled.

So to save the environment, grow the economy faster! Faster!

Make Earth Day be Capitalism Day.

Or Capitalism Day, Earth Day.

At 4/22/2009 10:56 PM, Blogger Dave Narby said...

EVERY day is Capitalism Day! :D

At 4/23/2009 9:13 PM, Blogger Rui Yu said...

it's called christmas.


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