Jonah Goldberg Pens A Good one...
PUBLIC POLICY is all about trade-offs. Economists understand this better than politicians because voters want to have their cake and eat it too, and politicians think whatever is popular must also be true.
Economists understand that if we put a chicken in every pot, it might cost us an aircraft carrier or a hospital. We can build a hospital, but it might come at the expense of a little patch of forest. We can protect a wetland, but that will make a new school more expensive.
You get it already. But let me just add that in the great scheme of trade-offs in the history of humanity, never has there been a better one than trading a tiny amount of global warming for a massive amount of global prosperity. The Earth got about 0.7 degrees Celsius warmer in the 20th century while it increased its GDP by 1,800%, by one estimate.
How much of that 0.7 degrees can be laid at the feet of that 1,800% is unknowable, but let's stipulate that all of the warming was the result of our prosperity and that this warming is in fact indisputably bad (which is hardly obvious). That's still an amazing bargain.