A valid concern

Some posts did not get published for one reason or another and languish in draft form.  This is one from last December.  My opinions have not changed.



As I read the article, let me make a few points:
First, “regulation” is the wrong aspiration. To regulate is to make regular and predictable and facilitates enterprise. Regulation is not a preventive or prophilactic.

Pumping components of the earth into the atmosphere is a bad idea.

Money is a figment of the imagination. Making decisions on the bases of its availability is a bad idea.

Regulation serves the industrial interest in ensuring fair competiion so that a wildcat driller does not get more profit. What you need are leases for access to public resources that are conditioned on achieving clear benefits for the public. You do not want the externalities to be more burdensome than the benefits.

Permits are ineffective in preventing pollution because the permitted activity is presumed to be beneficial or benign. One cannot use permitting to prevent unjurious behavior.