Friday, 26 February 2021

The latest bit of woke nonsense from Positive Money.


Positive Money was founded by Ben Dyson around ten years ago with a view to promoting full reserve banking (aka “Sovereign money”, aka “100% reserves”, aka “narrow banking”). And that’s what PM did for at least the first five years of its existence.

Unfortunately it now spends much of its time pushing a number of bizarre woke ideas like the one pictured above which appeared recently on Instagram.

There are several flaws in the idea that colonialism is responsible for climate change. For example Britain was the first big time polluter in terms of CO2 emissions and that stemmed from coal mining. And clearly a proportion of that coal was used to power ships which helped bolster the British empire. Unfortunately though the British empire PRECEDED coal powered ships by a good hundred or two hundred years. I.e. prior to coal powered ships there were (gasps of amazement) sail powered ships!

Looks like the connection between colonialism and pollution is a bit tenuous, but it gets worse, and for the following reasons.
Had Britain had no colonies at all, why would that have made much difference to the amount of coal mined in Britain? Much of that coal was used for power generation WITHIN Britain and to power railways WITHIN Britain and for the production of steel used WITHIN Britain!

As for Positive Money’s idea that capitalism is responsible for pollution, is the suggestion supposed to be that non-capitalist economies (e.g. Russia between 1917 and the collapse of communism in the 1980s) don’t consume coal and crude oil?

Moreover, the fact that a significant proportion of the coal mined in Britain was exported direct to colonies and used to power factories which exported products to those colonies still doesn’t prove a connection between colonialism and pollution. The reason is as follows.

A colony is a country which the colonising country dominates through the use of FORCE. In  contrast to that, there are countries which any given country, including a coloniser, can trade with WITHOUT the use force.

Now to take the example of Britain and the railways which Britain built in one of its colonies, India, suppose Britain HAD NOT colonised India, but had nevertheless, after inventing railways, gone along to India and said: “How about we build a railway system for you for several billion pounds (at 2021 prices) which will bring you enormous economic benefits.”

Well India would presumably have said, “We’re up for that”.

The moral is that the fact that historical examples of colonialism involved extra pollution, does not prove that absent that colonialism, things would have been much different: in particular, the total amount of pollution could easily have been much the same.  


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