Ep. 102 Hurricane Harvey, Climate Change

2 September 2017     |     Tom Woods     |     8

Krugman blames the destructiveness of the hurricane partly on climate change and partly on Houston’s lack of zoning. We take these on, and also defend the “price gouger,” who genuinely saves lives.

Krugman Blog Post

Zoning: Both Sides Get It Wrong” (August 29, 2017)

What Krugman Said

The Texas Unmiracle

Related Article

Why Houston Flooding Isn’t a Sign of Climate Change,” by Roy Spencer

Related Tom Woods Show Episodes

Ep. 987 “Price Gouging” Is Urgently Necessary
Ep. 932 Zoning: Do We Need It?

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  • davegrille

    Rules against disaster related price gouging are counter productive .The bigger question how does bad logic get as popular as it does.

    • https://www.facebook.com/david.rogers.hunt David_Rogers_Hunt

      Because the vast majority of people believe that wealth is fixed/zero-summed and can only be distributed and not created.

      I suggest checking out socialism and human nature for more on how this atavistic notion arises from primitive social psychology.

  • http://www.economicmanblog.com Roger Barris

    Great comments, although I am very surprised that you didn’t mention the role that subsidized federal flood insurance plays in inducing people to build homes in harm’s way. There have been a lot of good things written on this lately, mostly by Reason and Cato. Here is one example: http://reason.com/blog/2017/08/28/hurricane-harvey-and-the-national-flood.

    Second, for a very good rebuttal to the argument that Houston has especially suffered due to a lack of zoning, here is something via Marginal Revolution and George Mason University that gives the historical context (including the point about there being worse floods earlier that were clearly not the result of climate change) and also points out, on the basis of use-density maps, that Houston does not suffer from a lack of porous surface areas: http://philmagness.com/?p=2126

    (However, Bob, your argument about the private market being able to deal with water run-off issues is not entirely convincing. It suffers from the usual problems of externalities, public goods and collective action. But that is another subject….)

    Finally, for another example where Krugman has done violence to the laws of economics in order to deny the role that relatively freer markets have played in the success of Texas, you might look at this blog post entitled “Wrong Way Krugman” http://www.economicmanblog.com/wrong-way-krugman/. (You will note the swipe at John Kenneth Galbraith, who was the Paul Krugman of his epoch — maybe even worse.)

  • CristobaI

    Climate change is literally a definition of “Climate.”
    I like to use the analogy of witch-doctors controlling the ignorant masses with their knowledge of eclipse cycles – knowing of the coming “supernatural” event they can manipulate with fear.

    The moronic public – thinking climate can be held in stasis by “human actions,” – fall in line at the slightest hint of “change.”

  • Chase Miller
  • http://www.reinkefaceslife.com/ ferdinand reinke

    Can you cite those 20 points from the private facebook group. They were spot on and I’d like to quote from them. Looked in the group but couldn’t find them.

    • Eric William Smith

      I came here looking for these too. Any luck?