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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

 

Liberty vs. Stupidity

An Article in the Seattle Times (November 12, 2007) written by Neal Peirce is the antithesis of personal freedom and economic liberty. The Article’s title is “You Should Listen to Ron Sims” and as the title suggests, Peirce wants readers to embrace the actions of King County Executive Ron Sims in opposing a 17 billion dollar road and rail project. Not only are Sims and Peirce’s objections to this project unfounded and unsupported by evidence, but their grandiose claims signify the end of economic liberty in favor of government control and regulation.

Pierce says, “The overall package would have raised the area's carbon-dioxide emissions by 18 million to 28 million tons over the next 50 years” and “already, notes Sims, as many greenhouse gases are emitted in Washington State as the Philippines, which has 12 times Washington's population. Metro areas, he says, can't claim they're expanding for economic efficiency "and then go down to Brazil and say please don't cut your tropical rain forest””.

First, I cannot say for certain, but Ron Sims is not clairvoyant or psychic in any way, and therefore, he cannot make claims about future carbon monoxide emissions because he DOES NOT KNOW. The cars made in the next 50 YEARS will be noticeably different in the amount of emissions and may not emit carbon monoxide at all. Second, the analogy between Washington State and the Philippines is certainly not equitable. The GDP per capita (PPP) in the Philippines is 5,000 (US dollars) and in Washington State alone is more than 53,000 (US dollars). The number of roads in the Philippines that are paved is only 10%, and its national GDP is measured only in the billions. There is no comparison between Washington and the Philippines, especially economically. Third, advocates for economic efficiency do not waste time worrying about Brazil. The irony, is that those individuals who support “growth limits — tighter, denser communities”, also try to infringe on the economic freedoms of people in Brazil.

The socialist rhetoric and twisted values purposed by Peirce do not end with Brazil. He says:

“No one should have to commute more than a half-hour from home, Sims suggests."The human body," he said, "was not designed to be pounded from the stress and strain of long commutes." Plus, he said, we all need "time with our families, to live." That translates too into time for a mix of exercise and sociability, walking and biking and talking with neighbors — which reasonably compact communities make easier””.

Wow! Finally, a doctor, a psychic, a family psychiatrist, and an economist all in one! I find this statement as ridiculous as it is flawed. My freedom to NEVER meet my neighbors or walk my dog is worth the so called “problems”. In no way should anyone listen to Ron Sims or Neal Peirce and we are all a little more stupid for having done so already.

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