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Re: E-M:/ new energy efficiency code proposed; falls short of what legislatu.

Enviro-Mich message from Tim Flynn <tflynn@freeway.net>

Thanks for the reasoned reply, and yes we do give big Jawn a hard, and at 
times uncivil, going over.   Most of the time that critique is back up 
with fact about his record.

As to your point below.  Markets are wonderful things, they work in many 
situations but they are limited in the values they address.   In a civil 
society, there is more to an individuals freedom, sense of self, than a 
dollars worth of market based voting.    We are also part of a community- 
national, local, and NATURAL.   

Markets only deal with individual wants, not community values.   Even 
Adam Smith (the father of the free market idea) recognized that society 
needed to set the parameters within which markets would be allowed to 
operate.  We seem to have forgotten this in 20th century(Reagan) America. 
  Also as wealth and income continue to become more and more unequal, 
market become less and less equitable and less "fair".   One dollar, one 
vote begins to work against most of us.

Your (and my) freedom is not defined only by our ability to spend dollars 
for goods in a market.   It is also dependent on civil interaction 
amongst our peers, and the right to set standards for our communities.   
The demand that only the market can determine standards and that a 
democratic social process some how limits our "freedom" is to me absurd.

In an empty room your right to swing your fist is limited only by your 
own pain threshold.   In a more crowded room, your neighbors have the 
right to regulate your "freedom", as it infringes on their right to not 
get hit, and therefore their freedom.

Is this energy code the "right" way to deal with the externality of 
energy consumption?   I don't know, but I do know that if "we the people" 
decide it is and the policy we enact lessens the cost to others (friends, 
children, grandchildren, and critters) then freedom will have been 
enhanced not lessen, even if the market is constrained by these 
social/community values.

I would agree that an energy policy that work with market incentives, in 
addition to regulations, would likely achieve results more effiently, say 
tariffs or taxes that brought the cost of energy use into the price of 
energy consumed.   We Americans know the price of everything and the real 
cost of very little.

On 2/21/98 10:56 AM JerrodM@aol.com wrote:

>Regarding #3, I'm not sure what you mean by "omnipotent" but yes, the market
>is indeed all-powerful and the most efficient distributor of scarce goods. Do
>you really doubt that? Further, apart from questions of economics, there's
>another little issue that would-be controllers seem to forget now and then:
>freedom. In a nutshell, my question is this: What gives you or anyone else 
>right to tell me that I can't build a house that has "too many" windows?

Tim Flynn   tflynn@freeway.net    PO Box 308, Harbor Springs, MI 49740

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