The weekend WSJ included a pair of articles discussing what president-elect Barack Obama should do about global warming. I sensed, and enjoyed, a little bit of editorial commentary in the authors selected:
British novelist Ian McEwan spins an airy confection of emotion and earnestness in his plea that Obama immediately work to shut down the carbon economy -- while making the seemingly contradictory claim that this would actually make people lots of money pioneering new technology if they would only forget their attachment to past energy sources. (As with so many climate change activists, he turns a blind eye to the nuclear power which is the real source of Europe's lesser reliance on coal and oil and instead touts the advantages of solar power.)
Bjorn Lomborg of the Copenhagen Business School pens a much more prosaic piece, looking at the costs behind proposed solutions, the humanitarian dangers of ignoring pressing problems like global hunger to pursue potential future ones such as global warming, and the ineffectiveness of Kyoto-style approaches to "solving" global warming.
One hopes that Lomborg's pragmatic approach will win out over the sentimental prose of McEwan, but in a world where presidents heal planets, one never knows.
Fortnightly Book, March 29
2 hours ago