Things You SHOULD Worry About

Matt Ridley has convinced me not to worry about global warming-- near the end of his book The Rational Optimist, he makes a strong case that though it is certainly occurring, the effects won't be as disastrous as the worst of the doomsayers believe-- and he says our time could be better spent on more tangible terrors: "the four horsemen of the human apocalypse, which cause the most premature and avoidable death in poor countries, are and will be for many years the same: hunger, dirty water, indoor smoke, and malaria," and he even shows that from a more aesthetic, environmental view, global warming is not the cause of the loss of biodiversity on earth: "the threats to species are all too prosaic: habitat loss, pollution, invasive competitors, and hunting," and then he returns to his thesis, which he believes will eventually solve these problems . . . he says, "so long as human exchange and specialization are allowed to thrive somewhere, then culture evolves whether leaders help it or hinder it, and the result is that prosperity spreads, technology progresses, poverty declines, disease retreats, fecundity falls, happiness increases, violence atrophies, freedom grows, knowledge flourishes, the environment improves and wilderness expands". . . as long as ideas can "meet and mate, to have sex with each other."

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