Nipawin - Wednesday, September 5, 2001 - by: Mario deSantis


"The reason environmentalists are so often gloomy is that they know what the word 'exponential' means
-- Donella Meadows


The problem is, of course, that not only is economics bankrupt but it has always been nothing more than politics in disguise ... economics is a form of brain damage"

-- Hazel Henderson


We have been talking about the debunking of economic science and the failure of the so-called price system preached by our neoclassical economists and now I am coming across the writing of statistician Bjorn Lomborg telling us that our oil is not a finite economic resource otherwise its cost would have been 'very, very expensive.' Statistician Lomborg defends his position first by belittling the dooming predictions of the earlier environmentalists who wrote the 1972 bestseller Limits to Growth, and then by invoking the work of economist Julian Simon.


Donella Meadows, co-author of Limits to Growth, has specifically stated that


"We didn't think we had written a prediction of doom. We had intended to issue a warning, but also a vision. We saw, with the help of the computer, not one future but many, all possible, some terrible, some terrific."


It was not an accident that the authors of Limits to Growth used the simulation tool of System Dynamics to develop an understanding of the depletion of our natural resources rather than to predict the future.

System Dynamics

It is not an accident that our own Canadian universities, such as Simon Fraser University and the University of Manitoba, have included in their ecological economic curriculums the tool of System Dynamics. The regressive statistical approach of our economists is being questioned, and it is not an accident that I recently sent an e-mail message to the Post-Autistic Economics Network stating that
"I firmly feel that economists, in general, would greatly benefit in using Jay Forrester's System Dynamics approach to modeling."
I am of the opinion that statistician Bjorn Lomborg would benefit a lot if he could rework some of his statistical researches within the framework of System Dynamics.


Julian Simon has no clue of the social implications of economics and has stated

"if history is any guide, natural resources will progressively become less costly, hence less scarce."




Two billion people live in traditional societies outside the money system; as a consequence, the price system mechanism to allocate resources is only in the hegemonic mind set of our neoclassical economists and statisticians. Stanford University environmentalists Paul Ehrlich, John Harte and John Holdren were tricked by Julian Simon and lost a bet against him when they bet that the price of chromium, copper, nickel, tin and tungsten, would have increased because of depletion in a time frame of ten years. Julian Simon won the bet for the simple reason that the price system mechanism is not a measure of the scarcity of our natural resources. Later, Paul R. Ehrlich realized his mistake and challenged Simon to bet on fifteen ecological and population trends whose direction was not positive.


Our statistician Bjorn Lomborg is a reductionist researcher and he is being engaged by our controlled media and neoclassical economists to further brainwash people into the gospel of the price system mechanism. In summing up Bjorn Lomborg's claims of a wonderful world, Alex Kirby, BBC News corespondent, acutely observes that
"his separate snapshots of the world may be accurate. Taken together, they make a dangerously misleading picture."
  Related social and economic articles published by Ensign
  Donella Meadows, co-author of the books Limits to Growth and Beyond the Limits
  Global Electronic Markets: The Price of Everything--The Value of Nothing? Hazel Henderson, author, futurist and consultant on sustainable development. May 1998
  Running on empty?, Bjorn Lomborg, National Post, September 3, 2001
  Post-Autistic Economics Network,
  Quotes from Julian Simon, Julian Simon was professor of Business Administration at the University of Maryland and a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute
  IT'S NO TIME TO HEED THE BROWNLASH, by Paul R. Ehrlich and Stephen H. Schneider
  Bjorn Lomborg's wonderful world, Alex Kirby, BBC News, August 23, 2001