Posted by: graemebird | February 26, 2009

“Opportunity Cost” False Doctrine Leads To Bad Mental Habits.

The options that one has in national budgeting never come in pairs. Or at least they ought not. But the false doctrine of opportunity cost has trained our economists and decision-makers to always formulate matters that way.

Opportunity cost is false doctrine on first principles. Simply because it consists of a shoddy definition combined with a presumed gift of second site. It is false doctrine on first principles but a philosopher thinking about this when the phrase was first coined could know that no good would come out of this false doctrine….. yet he would be in no position to know the specific harm the false doctrine would perpetrate.

Costs are costs and revenues are revenues. Costs are not necessarily incurred in such a way as to effect cash flow instantaneously. But costs mathematically reduce profits whereas revenues mathematically increase profits. If push comes to shove most of the profits could be cashed out, and the fantasy matter of opportunity cost plays no part in this story. An opportunity cost is no cost at all. Its a mental exercise. And its a mentally restricting mental exercise. Since it gets people used to thinking in terms of two options only, one of them already decided against. So it gets people to not think at all.

The opportunity cost, which is no cost at all, is supposed to be the revenue from the next best option foregone. So we see that its no real cost, but an imaginary revenue. An imaginary revenue can never be a real cost. Already thinking in this way has tendentiously lead the “thinker” into presuming he has the right option, and presuming that the opportunity cost option was the next best thing he could have done. But alternatives in life, are like demons who speak in strange tongues. They are always LEGION. And it is hard to know all aspects of any one of them, let alone everything about all of them.

Usually we have people talking about the opportunity cost as what would have happened had your money been in the bank collecting interest. This is the next best option? Immediately the presumption is that what you are doing is the best option, as proven by the assumption that this option is better than the opportunity cost option.

We have to retrain people into opening up their minds and thinking about all the possibilities.

Suppose we are talking carbon and energy production. We have grown adults who had framed the debate in terms of the following two options.

1. Cap and kill.

2. Do nothing.

Having acted like there is but two choices available rather then 1000 and each choice better then the last…….. well the economist, by sheer bad mental habit brought on by false doctrine…… precedes to go to work on the bunny doctrine. Cap and Kill will cost us dearly. So the idea is to conjure a horrorshow to have make-believe costs (of the bunny do-nothing option) as large as possible.

This dualist debate had gone on for a long time. Then Humphreys, Sinclair and some leftist fellow from some leftist thinktank decided to strike all on the same day in a push to break out of this dualist mentality. To break out of this nightmare of two options only. And to reset it into a different nightmare, also of two options only.

And this is the mental training that a lifetime of the false doctrine of opportunity cost will give you.

Here are a few options just to prove that it is possible to have more than two.

1. Cap and Kill.

2. Carbon tax.

3. Do Nothing.

4. Spend billions on a publicity campaign reprising Nancy Reagans “Just Say No” campaign. Spend billions defaming environmentalists with this campaign so as to overide their bullshit momentum and get all the momentum going the other way. Solve the alleged problem directly that way.

5. Suspend contributions to the UN until the IPCC cleans up its mess and educates the world about CO2 being helpful to the biosphere. Solve the alleged problem directly that way.

6. Mass-sackings of CO2-bedwetters in the public service, decisively solving the alleged problem by this more direct route.

7. A suite of guaranteed 50 year tax exemptions on certain matters to do with energy production. As well as other measures. These measures strategically designed to guarantee that our guys become the lowest cost producers of liquid fuel, and that this country becomes the per capita energy giants of history. Producing, consuming, and exporting more than any country prior had every dreamed about. The locked in tax exemptions, and other measures, meet the environmentalist movement head on as a massive fait accompli as to our future. And this solves the problem by demoralizing the scum.

8. 6 & 7 together.

9. 8 as well as a second wave of mass-sackings of taxeaters to further cut costs.

Notice that the general trend of these alternatives is in the direction of each one being better than the one before. You are missing out on options as soon as you freeze matters into a two-way debate.


We simply cannot let bad economists with their bad mental habits keep arm-twisting and rigging things up to be a two-choice scenario. This is unacceptable obstruction to the debate. And its a bad mental habit that primarily seems to come from this ingrained false doctrine.

Yesterday I thought that Sinclair was showing treasonous intent in this regard. But his framing things in terms of ETS or Carbon Tax could be a bad mental habit as much as anything else. We must take things into our own hands and transcend the limitations of our economists. We have a country to save*




  1. Absolutely sensational article by Michael Costa about the damage these evil environmentalists are doing to the economy.

    Also it contained this highlight:

    “Catering to the insatiable demands of these people is costing the economy billions of dollars when the Prime Minister is putting the nation in hock in the hope of avoiding a technical recession.”

    TECHNICAL. Michael has somehow sussed it that this Keynesian splurging hurts us and only rigs the figures.

    Humphreys and the rest of you ought take a leaf out of Costa’s book and actually go learn some economics.

    The quality of Costas columns has grown very quickly and to me this is better than anything outside of Brookesnews.

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