Advanced Worldview Analysis - Lesson 22

Types of Pollution

Discussion of how people work in a capitalistic system to address environmental concerns.

Ronald Nash
Advanced Worldview Analysis
Lesson 22
Watching Now
Types of Pollution

The Christian Worldview and Environmentalism
Part 2

I.  Acid Rain

A.  pH Levels

B.  Collection of pH data

C.  Acid lakes


II.  Automobiles

A.  R. J. Rushdooney

B.  Pollution output of cars vs. horses

C.  "Fight Smog, Get a Horse"


III. Capitalism and the Environment

A. Capitalism creates incentives to do the right things.

B. Capitalism generates and distributes needed information about pollution.

C. Capitalism enables people to trade things or rights to solve problems.

D. Capitalism enables property rights to develop over time.

  • Discussion of the content of a worldview and the criteria used to evaluate worldviews.

  • Discussion of liberalism and conservatism, and statism and anti-statism.

  • Political systems fall along a continuum between the extremes of anarchism and totalitarianism.

  • People favoring statism support extensive government involvement in education and social programs.

  • From a biblical point of view, statism is evil.

  • Discussion of justice on an individual and corporate level.

  • An economy based on capitalism has much less government involvement than an economy based on socialism.

  • Interventionism is a capitalistic economic system in which government gets involved to allow free exchange within a framework of laws.

  • Discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of capitalism.

  • Two basic concepts of economics are limited resources and the choices we make that reflect our values.

  • Marxism is an economic system based on the idea of a class struggle with the goal of a classless society.

  • Article from The Free Market

  • The Bible and Socialism, Moral Defense of Capitalism

  • We are responsible to be a good steward of the wealth God gives us to manage.

  • Some of the root causes of poverty are government, social and religious systems.

  • Liberation theology is an ideology promoted by people trained in Marxism. True liberation theology delivers people from tyranny, poverty and sin.

  • Christians ought to care about poverty and oppression. People who hold differing economic and social theories propose very different approaches and solutions to these problems.

  • Discussion of the differences between evangelical liberals and conservatives.

  • Guest Lecturer, Alejandro Moreno-Morrison discussing the inflation of rights.

  • Guest Lecturer, Alejandro Moreno-Morrison discusses legal positivism.

  • A balanced approach toward environmentalism is needed because it can be a serious threat to individual liberty.

  • Discussion of how people work in a capitalistic system to address environmental concerns.

  • The public school system in the United States has fostered functional illiteracy, cultural illiteracy, and moral/spiritual illiteracy.

  • Discussion of the pros and cons of setting up a voucher system to fund the education system.

In this class, you will gain a comprehensive understanding of advanced worldview analysis, starting with an introduction to the concept of a worldview and its importance. You will explore the various components that make up a worldview, including epistemology, metaphysics, ethics, and anthropology. The course delves into analyzing different worldviews such as theism, deism, naturalism, nihilism, and existentialism. Finally, you will learn about the role of the church and individual believers in engaging with culture and responding to worldview challenges, as well as strategies for effective communication of your own worldview.

Dr. Ronald Nash

Advanced Worldview Analysis


Types of Pollution

Lesson Transcript

[00:00:03] Acid rain. Acid rain neutrality with respect to acidity is a H of seven. Now, let me let me tell you why a page of seven is defined as neutral acidity. Here's why. Here are some naturally occurring PH levels. Bananas have a level of 4.6. Carrots have a patch level of 5.0. Coca Cola, you've addicts, you Coca Cola has a level of 2.2. I'm going to write a book and I'm going to blame acid rain on Coca Cola. All of these X generation weirdos who open a whole can of coke at the ocean and then just leave it there to spill into the sand. Now, I want to suggest that neutral acidity is sort of a you can't make neutral acidity. 4.6 You'd have a revolution here in the supermarkets. So neutral acidity is a choice of seven. Below seven is acidic. Any above seven is alkaline. Any lower than 5.0 is believed to damage the environment. So you banana eaters, you're making your contribution to damage to the environment. Now, here are some important things that compromise a lot of these theories. Collection devices can affect the age of a sample. So can other factors as whether a sample is collected early in a rainstorm or later in a rainstorm. The same container. If it's the first rain that falls, the acidity will be different than if it's the last rain that falls. Now, look at this ice pack samples deposited hundreds to thousands of years ago. This would be in Iceland. All from rainwater show values. Hundreds and thousands of years ago show values of 4.4 to 4.8. That's acid rain. Before we had anything in the world to cause acid rain. The there would obviously be major volcanic eruptions. You can't blame it on modern technology.


[00:02:48] Now, here's another surprising fact. There is surprisingly low acidity in the ice pack between 1920 and 1960. You've got all of this environmental pollution. But for some reason, between 1920, 1966, 1960, it's very low. Now, I'm not aware of any explanation for that difference. Soils exhibit widely varying degrees of acidity. Lightning can produce nitric acid. Now, here's the conclusion of our authors. Acidic lakes have little or nothing to do with acid rain. Acidic lakes typically reflect land use, soil chemistry and geology. There are highly acidic lakes in areas of low or no acid rain and vice versa. There are parts of the country where you have acidic rain, but the lakes are not acidic. You have other parts of the country where you have no acid rain, but you've got highly acidic waters in certain lakes. There is no causal connection here. But none of this is what we hear from the people in the major news networks. Now, I now want to talk about the automobile, the most dangerous invention, a modern man. I'm going to shut this off for a while because it's generating heat and it's ruining the environment. And I came across and this is funny, a reference to something written by Bruce Rushdoony. Let me put because I don't mention Rousseau very much. Let me put his name on the board. Rousseau Rousseau's now gone to heaven. But before he went to heaven, he was not exactly a I wasn't his favorite person, if you can believe this Rousseau's Rushdoony used to attack me. I think his attitude towards me has probably improved quite a bit. He was one of these men who took the teachings of Cornelius Vanderbilt to an extreme and developed the animist movement. What he did to attack me in a book, what was it called? Oh heavens, I can't even recall the title.


[00:05:22] Must be some kind of Freudian slip here or something that I can't remember. And he accused me of worshiping the law of non contradiction. Of course I follow Gordon Clark. Who was the more rational of those two people. And Van Tyll would be the rationalist. Then. I'm joking here. The 500 people in this room all know I'm smiling right now. I have no ill will for anybody that I'm mentioning. But I think Rushdoony suggested in his book that Ron Nash, every time there was a full moon, went out into his backyard and prayed to the law of non contradiction. I have never done that. I have prayed that some of our students at the seminary would come to understand how essential the law of non contradiction is. But you know, the law of non contradiction is an unchangeable attribute of God is an essential property of God. So I worship the Lord. I do not worship the law of non contradiction. And now. But Bruce Rushdoony wrote a nice little piece about automobiles. Let me just read this. Actually, this was written by somebody else, but he keeps quoting from Rushdoony. For the average American, the private automobile represents mobility, productivity, privacy and freedom. It is therefore hardly a surprise that the automobile has become a target of collectivists, that statists who wish to regiment and regulate humans and reduce the standard of living of the masses to an easily controlled level of subsistence prior to the invention of the automobile, we're told, manned, largely traveled by foot on animals or in devices pulled by animals. His travel was limited and when undertaken was usually onerous and time consuming, even for kings. But the automobile made possible high standards of living, great individual mobility and productivity and access to the countryside for recreation and enjoyment.


[00:07:25] Do you realize that without the automobile or veto would still be a swampland? Do you understand that? Oviedo is where we live in rural America. The automobile is the only means of transportation that assures employment and income. Without it, the countryside would surely be depopulated and our cities far more control now. Somebody saw a bumper sticker recently that's popular among environmentalists. It reads, Fight smog. Get a horse. Fight smog. Get a horse. Sounds like an environmentalist. The implication here is that horses could provide a cleaner environment than automobiles. That is ludicrous. During a London symposium in 1971, it was revealed that the average automobile there, which was far less clean than now the average automobile in 1971, emitted six grams of pollutant per mile. That's 1971. The average horse in 1971 emitted 600 grams of solid pollutant. Do you want me to draw you a picture? What solid pollutant is? I'm just thinking. That's what we used to talk about in high school in Cleveland, Ohio. I'm sorry. Solid pollutant and 300 grams of liquid pollutant now at the top of Michigan. There is a beautiful little island called Mackinaw. Any of you ever been there in the night? You. There are no automobiles on Mackinaw Island. If you want to see Mackinaw Island in the movies, it's Christopher Reeve starred in a movie called Time. It was a love story. Yeah. Heartbreaking movie. He dies at the end, but he goes back in time and meets the love of his life. And then he comes back and. Oh, it's just so sad. Anyway, the only way you can get around Makin Island is by running a carriage in which you're sitting right behind a horse or two. All right. And let me tell you, when you follow that horse for about 20 miles, you see a whole lot of peloton, you see a whole lot of it solid and liquid.


[00:10:04] And you keep thinking, Where's my Buick? That's what you keep thinking. Historian Russo's Jay Rushdoony has described the environmental nightmare that accompanied the horse with 3.5 million horses in U.S. cities and another 17 million horses in the countryside, many of which would come into cities when farmers delivered their produce or purchased supplies. Life was, to say the least, a real mess. Here's Rushdoony quote. In the winter or spring. The manure, otherwise known as solid pollutant. Although it didn't stay solid during the summer, the winter and the winter spring, the manure turned to slush and it meant walking or slipping or falling into liquified manure in bad weather. There was little respite in the summertime. Since then, the sun dried, the manure and the wagon wheels soon turned that manure into floating dust to be breathed by all. Oh, man, I'm sick already. Fight, smog. Get a horse. Yeah. To be breathed by all into cold clothing and furniture with a foul covering. No wonder people stunk. Back then, that stuff was all over their clothes. People complained about breathing, pulverized horse dung. And the summer breeze was a disaster. Mabel, the breeze is coming up. Get the clothes off the clothesline. Summer rains only brought back manure. Mush. Rushdoony notes that windblown particles spread disease spores. I wonder if environmentalists know about diseases such as tetanus. You could get tetanus back then by just breathing. And the manure bred flies by the billions, making it impossible to keep swarms of flies out of their houses. Sparrows attracted by the grain particles in the manure multiplied astronomically, and they did a pretty good job of polluting the environment, making it difficult indeed, to sit under the shade of that old apple tree. Yeah, nothing like the good old days.


[00:12:26] While housewives found that their clothes on the clothesline often bore evidence of sparrow droppings. Now, when horses died, they would often be abandoned on city streets. Horses die. Do you want to stay in there? In 1880, there were 15,000 dead horses left on the streets of New York. That's the street that Frank Sinatra made famous. 15,000 dead horses. And as late as 1912, Chicago had 10,000 dead horses left on its streets. I can still remember the horses coming down my street in Cleveland, Ohio. It was a well, you know. Often before disposal agencies could reach the scene, dogs would begin scavenging the carcasses, carting hunks of meat into nooks and crannies where it would purify and breed more flies. Noise pollution was also a problem for iron horse shoes on cobblestone pavements. I can hear them now. Four shoes to a horse and sometimes two and four horses to a wagon made a tremendous racket night and day. Automobiles and trucks are silent by comparison. All things considered, then, the coming of the 20th century technology and the automobile did not increase pollution. It lessened it. It helped limit it severely. Bad as smog is a very strong case exists for the very important fact that the air over American cities is now definitely cleaner. Hmm. Now, I've got one more thing on horses. While it is true the cars create pollution, it is also true the cars may have dramatically decreased overall pollution. A horse produces approximately £45 of manure each day. Now, get that on your notes, because that's going to be on the final exam. £45 of manure each day in high density urban environments, massive tonnages accumulated requiring constant collection and disposal flies, dried dung, dust and the smell of urine filled the air, spreading disease and irritating the lungs.


[00:14:36] On rainy days, one walk through puddles of liquid wastes. Occupational diseases in horse related industries were common. Man. Deliver us from the environmentalists. Okay. Well, let me see here. Now it's time to begin to move towards my punch lines. Capitalism and the environment. Here it is. There are four reasons why capitalism will protect the environment. And this is a part of the economic stuff that we learn. Number one, capitalism creates incentives to do the right. If the environment needs protection in this way or that way, people are going to do it because they can make money doing it. Secondly, capitalism generates and distributes needed information. If people need information about how to improve the environment, other people are going to make that information available and they're going to make money doing that. Thirdly, capitalism enables people to trade things or rights in order to solve problems that otherwise can't be solved, and it enables property rights to evolve over time. Now, here are some other considerations, and I apologize that the tape is so small. Prosperity is not incompatible with a clean environment. In fact, prosperity is necessary to make the large investments needed to keep our air and water clean and to protect wilderness areas that cost money. Innovation. The use of ideas to solve problems is more important than the finite supply of things in determining how prosperous a people will be. It's Robert Novak. No, I'm sorry, Michael Novak, the Roman Catholic thinker who points out that the word capitalism comes from a Latin word that means the head. The most important possession people can have is the ability to think. Property rights are the critical link between actions and accountability. A well-functioning property rights system creates appropriate incentives, generates useful information, and allows exchanges to move resources to places where they are most highly valued.


[00:16:57] Moreover. Not to get excited here. Give me some names of the most polluted countries in the world. I don't think you can find a more polluted country in the world and Russia. Now, let me tell you about my stuff in Russia. I made my first trip to Russia. It was then the Soviet Union in 1991. We were warned, Don't eat the food, don't drink the water, and don't breathe the air. And if you do any of those things, your hair will fall out. That's what they said to me. And I didn't believe them. They said to me, Don't brush your teeth with tap water. You can do that. And I'm not picking on Mexico. I'm telling you about Russia. Don't drink tap water. Don't brush your teeth. My first meal in Moscow. Was breakfast. And I just heard you don't drink the water. And they were cleaning up after the first serving of food and what was called a restaurant. And here's how they cleaned it. They took all of these dirty glasses and they poured tap water in the first of them. And then they just kept pouring the same tap water in every other glass. Right. And those were the clean utensils that they served us. I got food poisoning that first day. It might have been psychosomatic, but I because I was sick as a dog. And of course, as bad as Moscow is, Saint Petersburg is even worse because there is some something in the water in Saint Petersburg cryptosporidium, I think, or something like that. And I had a friend who was a history professor at Western Kentucky University, and he went to Saint Petersburg and this is how dumb he was. He figured that if he put vodka in the glass and then used ice knowing that the ice was infected with cryptosporidium or something else, that the liquor would kill the spirit.


[00:19:13] He he nearly died. Vodka will kill almost anything, but it won't purify the water in Saint Petersburg. On my second trip, my brother and I and some friends went up to Saint Petersburg. It's beautiful city, beautiful city. Although it's when you get up close, all of the buildings are pretty bad shape. And we met a lot of college students there and we witness to them and we talked to them, but then they served us stuff to eat and everybody else got sick, deathly sick. We thought my brother might die. That's socialist ecosystems. Oh, man. I was with a scientist on that first trip. We were staying in a big hotel just down wind from a power plant, and we went out on the I think there was a balcony there and he said, You watch these clouds that come in that direction, and when you see them coming towards your room, you get out of there. Don't you breathe that stuff. More pollution. Back then. The big joke in Moscow was that there are just two things wrong with Russia. The roads and politicians just do things wrong. And I do think there's a causal connection between the two. So which are the cleanest environment? They happen to be capitalist countries. Now, of course, we've got problems, as we've said, but we're solving our problems. On my third trip, we went to Ukraine and we were not far from Chernobyl, the site of that horrible calamity in which huge numbers of Red Army soldiers were simply sent into that killing radiation, even if they just shoveled one or two shovels of stuff on to try and cover over the nuclear radiation. And they were dropping like flies because life meant nothing to the Russians then.


[00:21:18] So why not kill ten or 15,000 Red Army soldiers to cover over that radioactive stuff? But then when I was in Ukraine in 1992, the deadly effects were spreading and there were just thousands of children dying of leukemia or cancers of some type or other. And these people were very angry at Russia, needless to say. Okay, well, socialism, collectivism is not the solution for our environmental woes. Many of the environmental woes have been solved, but that doesn't mean that we have an excuse to just sort of let go and let things get worse. But I firmly believe that most of the propaganda that is fed us today that has become second nature with us today that school kids have been brainwashed into believing is not true. Now, I keep paying attention. I could give you more information about global warming, but I'll just mention one thing here that the high temperatures and the low temperatures of today have happened before and they will happen again. There really isn't any kind of definitive proof that says the world is going to get hotter and hotter and hotter. But we'll see. As you know, I'm an open minded person. And every time a glacier slips off of the Antarctica, I notice it. And I wonder what will be going on when my grandchildren get to be a little older. Thank you for listening to this lecture. Brought to you by biblical training, dawg. Your prayers and financial support enable us to provide a biblical and theological education that all people around the world can access. Blessings. As you continue to study and live out your faith and as you grow in your relationship with the Lord.