April 19, 2017
Pompous Ass Alert
Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson is getting the capital-S Science crowd into an excited molecular state for the big march! "This is Science! It's not something to toy with!" He shouts at 2:45 of his new four-minute video. I cannot embed, but you should oughtta watch it. It's archetypal Tyson.
But -- am I wrong? -- he's a property rights denier! That's not a bon mot attempt on my part, the video opens with the question "How did America rise up from a backwoods country to become one of the greatest nations the world has ever known?"
I expected Deirdre McCloskey to come out and explain Bourgeois Dignity in her scratchy voice. But no, Tyson's dulcet tones continued . . . it is . . . wait for it . . . you're not going to believe this . . . it is because of Science! All these amazing industries we invented! Because we used to believe in science, I mean Science!
So, Doctor Tyson, Dr. McCloskey would ask you, as a proponent of Popperesque epistemology, "why did this scientific miracle happened here?" We believed in Science better than the Danes? Britain started to doubt that F= dP/dt and lost her empire to the colonists? In a word -- and I know you love direct talk -- Bullshit! (Okay, I just added the "Rant" category.)
By the same token, are we failing in the 21st Century because we've ceased to believe everything that you and Bill Nye say? Or are we slipping because we're abandoning bourgeois dignity?
He says that once we all agree on the obvious science (of climate change), only then we can make the informed political choices between [~3:05] carbon credits, taxes, do we put a tariff, do we subsidize? He did not list any free-market options, but, hey, it's only a four minute film. No doubt time was tight.
When you stop denying the benefits of property rights, Dr. Tyson, then and only them will we be able to have the political conversation about solving the problems of our day. This is economics! It's not something to toy with!Rant Science Posted by John Kranz at April 19, 2017 12:59 PM