Sunday, May 08, 2005

Julian Simon - The Ultimate Resource

My admiration for Julian Simon is tremendous. His was a life (he passed away several years ago) that affirmed my faith in secular science, and that truth will become evident to a person who truly seeks it. I don't have any of his books at home, from whence I blog, and so cannot very accurately describe his biography right now. His book, the Ultimate Resource, is a powerful testimony to the power of human ingenuity in solving issues related to natural resources. For him, as well as a dedicated group of secular disciples, the human person is the ultimate resource - such has it always been, and such will it always be. Which, incidentally, is why modern society's obsession with "overpopulation" is misplaced and counterproductive (to put it mildly). If we can't see the problem, how can it possibly be solved?

If you're able to handle a comprehensive refutation of all the conventional "wisdom" about the more people is bad argument, then get yourselves a copy of The State of Humanity. These two books are a solid introduction to the thoughts of a man who let the science change his mind, and went on to influence many because of his "scientophany". An interesting anecdotal story: Paul Ehrlich, noted population alarmist, made a very public bet with Julian Simon in the 1980's, based on their radically different views of humans and natural resources, to be held over the duration of a decade. When the due date finally arrived, Simon beat Ehrlich's pants off, and Ehrlich quietly paid for his failed prediction. Sadly, many still consider Ehrlich more reputable and correct than Simon, who clearly knew what he was talking about. See for yourselves.


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