The New Yorker's Mindless Nonsense on Economy vs. Environment

Thu, 2009-03-26 04:48Kevin Grandia
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The New Yorker's Mindless Nonsense on Economy vs. Environment

The lead article in this week’s New Yorker by David Owen is a loony display of dishonest economics and a flagrant mangling of science and reason. Entitled “Economy vs. Environment,” (oy, here we go again) the piece presents the false notion that solving the climate crisis will inevitably come at the expense of economic collapse.

Owen claims that - should the U.S. follow Obama and the international community toward a global solution to global warming - the economy might never recover, and even if it did, we’d be fools to retain climate “policies that will seem to be nudging us back toward the abyss.” 

Yes, ghastly poverty and economic ruin are the only outcomes of trying to solve climate change, if we listen to David Owen.  A trip to Davy Jones’ locker for the world economy, says he.

Aptly described by Climate Progress, Owen’s piece is “so bad, so filled with long-debunked right-wing talking points, it would barely qualify for the Wall Street Journal editorial page.” 

Yet there it is, featured in the top pages and pixels of the New Yorker’s print and web editions, in direct contradiction to the brilliant, factual reporting by the New Yorker’s Elizabeth Kolbert

Others have taken the time to debunk Owens’ baseless claims, so I won’t bother to here.  Head on over to this analysis by Grist.org and another at Get Energy Smart Now!, and don’t foget Joe Romm’s critique at Climate Progress as mentioned above. 

Thanks to each of them for responding so thoroughly to Owen’s insanity so I don’t have to waste the keystrokes on him myself.

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Disruption

This is a guest post by Zach Roberts.

As a documentary producer, I watch more than my fair share of environmental protest documentaries — probably about 20 a year. And almost all of them have the same, vague message: we need to do something!

Their scenes re-play like a bad video montage in my mind: earnest young people speaking at podiums, boring climatologists rambling on about the coming end of the world, forest fires, melting ice shelves, you know how it goes. In the lefty journalism world, we call this “preaching to the choir.”

Then there's Disruption,...

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