Oil addiction fiction isn’t a new phenomena in the US. The number of people who believe the miracle product that doubles life expectancy and improves human life is. Our friend Alex Epstein was recently on Glenn Beck. He took this myth to the woodshed.
Since oil addiction fiction has spread so rampantly through the American psyche we decided to have our friends at CabbageTree Solutions transcribe the interview. If you know anyone who believes the false narrative about oil and gas, send them this link!
Oil Addiction Fiction: The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels Alex Epstein talks to Glenn Beck
Oil Addiction Fiction Transcript
Glenn: Welcome to the program. This is the second day in a row we have had a person from California in our midst that makes a lot of sense. Now, I can’t vouch for him yet. And I’m sitting between The Tale of Two Cities right here. I got Stu in one side saying, “This guy is fantastic. I’ve interviewed him before.” And then I’m sitting here with the Grinch on the other side, Pat who hates all guests –
Pat: Not – That’s not true.
Glenn: Like we can have Jesus and you’d be like, “We can read about it in the Bible.”
Pat: It depends. Is it Easter?
Glenn: Why don’t we just –
Pat: Is it Christmas?
Glenn: What –
Pat: Is it relevant?
Stu: Right. [Laughter]
Glenn: Why don’t we –
Pat: Has he written a really good book to die like…
Glenn: Pat, it’s Jesus.
Pat: And by the way, yes, he has –
Glenn: Right? We’ve already –
Pat: So –
Glenn: …read the book. We can just talk about what Jesus said. It’s Jesus. So anyway, we don’t have Jesus today but maybe possibly soon. Alex Epstein is here. He is written a book The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels. And we really love this because it is something honestly we’re just talking about two days ago, the moral case for the pipeline.
How can you – how can you possibly say that it’s more eco-friendly or moral if you’re against fossil fuels to ship the oil from Saudi Arabia then from Canada? It just doesn’t make any sense whatsoever.
But fossil fuels have changed the world. And Alex is here to talk about it. And you’re from California.
Alex: Yep, Laguna Beach.
Glenn: That doesn’t make any sense. How is a guy from Laguna Beach have your opinion? Do they know you have this opinion in California?
Alex: Well, because I grew up in the fossil fuel hotbed that is Washington DC.
Alex: So, of course, I was –
Glenn: Right, yeah.
Alex: …I was taught to love fossil fuels.
Alex: I think it’s a long story but basically my background is in Philosophy. And when you take Philosophy and you question assumptions, if you look at the assumptions behind all the arguments against fossil fuels, they turn out to just be incredibly irrational.
So, for me, it was really a logical thing. I saw this thing that everyone is arguing about and it turns out that if you think through logically, the majority is completely wrong.
Glenn: Okay. So, let’s go through some of the philosophical arguments.
Glenn: What did you go through?
Alex: Well so, you know, when you grow up at least in modern America, you’re taught this narrative. And George W. Bush actually helped promote this that fossil fuels are in addiction. So, there’s something that might be convenient in the short term but the long-term are destroying us.
And you’re given three basic reasons. One, they’re causing depletion. Two, they’re causing pollution. And three, they’re causing global warming or climate change. And this is use to say, well, they’re an addiction. We need to get off them. We need to use renewable moral green energy –
Alex: And if you think about this, how much sense does this make? The fact that something has risks or side effects, so let’s grant that there’s some truth to all three of these which there is some truth. How does that make it immoral? How does the fact that something is imperfect making it moral? What if we applied the same logic to vaccines?
So, what if we said, “Well, vaccines have side effects.” Therefore, if you support vaccines you’re a vaccine side effect denier. How dare you. You’re so irrational –
Glenn: …that case.
Alex: Well, now in Southern California this is of course been –
Alex: …become a big position but at least –
Alex: …most people recognize it as irrational because let’s say, “Look these things save lives. They’re vital.” Well, if that’s true for vaccines, then that’s true for the energy that makes it possible for us to have vaccines –
Glenn: But we don’t talk about –
Alex: …fossil fuels.
Glenn: …we don’t talk about the benefits. We talk about the benefits of vaccines all the time but nobody talks about the benefits of fossil fuels. If it wasn’t for fossil fuels, sewing machines wouldn’t work. I mean really, nothing works without fossil fuels. All you ever hear about, the argument on fossil fuels is, “Oh, well, you know, I ain’t got fossil fuel,” so you could have a bigger car. Well, no. That’s not the main purpose of fossil fuels, right?
Alex: Yeah, although if you need a bigger car –
Glenn: I want four big cars. The bigger the better. I want to drive my house –
Alex: …be able to have – I mean I’m really glad the army isn’t driving Prius. Right?
Glenn: Yeah, yes. Yes. Yes.
Alex: So – but yeah and it’s important that this is a point not just about the past but about the present and the future because you often hear, “Oh, we needed fossil fuels in the past but, you know, they are no longer good.” And this is like saying, “Oh, we needed steel in the past. But, you know, in the future, we’re not going to use steel. Let’s use renewable materials. Let’s build skyscrapers out of wood.” Like –
Alex: …this is the logic of saying and that we –
Glenn: Well, wait, wait, wait. That is a renewable source and they don’t want you to use that renewable source.
Alex: What wood?
Glenn: That means I can cut wood down and grow another tree but they yell at you for cutting down the tree.
Alex: Well –
Glenn: I can plant another one.
Alex: …well this gets to the whole philosophy of it because if you notice, whenever they do any kind of development even if it’s solar and wind, once people see that this —[0:05:04]
Alex: …involves development, the whole green philosophy of anti-impact as well, of course, we can impact the planet. We didn’t think solar would impact. Oh, my gosh, it involves all these panels and –
Alex: …the windows are big. Not – of course, we can’t do that. So, it’s a very much I can’t act a philosophy. And that’s part of the moral case is that really this is a battle not about green energy versus fossil fuels, but about anti-humanism and anti-impact. That philosophy versus humanism and industrial progress.
Stu: Because you wrote this down I thought really well in the book which was The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels, Alex Epstein is with us, that it’s a battle between whether if your goal is to impact the Earth as least as possible or to make life as good for humans as possible.
Stu: Those are the competing arguments. Can you talk about that a little bit?
Glenn: Well, wait, wait –
Glenn: …wait. I want to throw this in. Those are not mutually exclusive.
Glenn: We don’t want to trash the Earth –
Glenn: …to make life good for humans –
Stu: But which is –
Glenn: …because life won’t be good for humans if we trash the Earth. So, you just do the least amount of damage as you possibly can to the Earth and know that the Earth is living thing and it will repair itself.
Alex: So, yes. So, I don’t quite disagree – I don’t quite agree with that in the sense that in any endeavor in life, you have to be clear on what is your primary purpose, what is the thing that you’re optimizing for and then what’s a secondary purpose. So, if you’re ultimate goal is to maximize human well-being, then you care about your environment as a means to maximizing human well-being. But you don’t think of it as minimizing your impact on your environment. That’s –
Glenn: Oh, wait, wait. The reason why I say it is because all of our – if we destroy the Earth, everyone would agree, you know, if there was a big oil with – big oil drip with lips that could talk even it would agree, without the planet, we’d all be flown out in space and we die. So, nobody wants to – I mean it goes without saying that you don’t want to destroy the planet. We want to –
Glenn: …we want to make our lives best and – but if we do that by destroying the planet, our lives aren’t great.
Alex: But we have to distinguish between a negative impact on the planet and a positive impact. What the green philosophy says is we should minimize impact as such. So, let’s take the decision to build New York City. If New York City was up for a vote today, does –
Alex: …anyone believe –
Alex: …that the environmentalists would say yes?
Glenn: No. No.
Alex: What about Chicago?
Alex: What about the first hospital?
Alex: What about any given baby?
Glenn: Uh huh.
Alex: No. So, that the idea is that if humans have an impact, it’s bad as such. Now, the rest of nature can have any impact it wants. So, there’s really a fundamental bias against humans. And I think everyone has bought into anti-impact as an ideal whereas – no, we want anti-negative impacts for human. So, I’m a humanist who cares about my environment. I’m not an environmentalist. That’s to define your core philosophy as your environment, that’s like saying in work, I’m in office-ist.
Alex: Like my whole purpose is my –
Alex: No, I want a good office because I want a good job.
Stu: Right, yes.
Glenn: Can I ask you a question?
Stu: I like that.
Glenn: Can I ask you a question?
Glenn: In California, do children throw rocks at you?
Alex: I’m actually quite popular. [Laughter]
Glenn: Are you really?
Alex: Well, well, I –
Glenn: It doesn’t make any sense to me –
Glenn: …because you’re making sense.
Alex: Well, well –
Glenn: …you’re making total sense.
Alex: I mean, well, you have to understand how, you know, how life works if you’re not Glenn Beck. It’s not like I’m recognized on the street every day.
Glenn: Okay, all right.
Alex: And the one I am recognized, it’s generally by somebody who’s a fan. Now, I go to –
Glenn: You’re right.
Alex: …environmentalists rallies –
Glenn: Yeah –
Alex: …or anti-humanist rallies. They recognize the shirt. They actually send people to tail me and harassed me because I like taking a lot of video of myself, you know, during soccer T style, interlocking with these guys. And I wear this “I love fossil fuels” shirt. So, I do get recognized there and not always positive –
Glenn: How did you not introduce him to us earlier?
Stu: I had him on the show that there’s a new network –
Glenn: I don’t watch your crappy show. No. How –
Stu: This is great.
Glenn: …do we not know about him earlier?
Stu: You need to see this video because Alex – I mean, you know, multiple videos but he stands in the middle of a giant protesters. They’re moving down the street and he doesn’t move with the protest. He just stands facing the opposite way with a shirt that says, “I heart fossil fuels.” [Laughter]
Alex: No, no, no. That’s inaccurate because the shirt is actually not prominent enough, so I have a big white sign also that says, “I love fossil fuels.” Because I don’t want – I don’t want to, you know.
Stu: What I was amazed about because one of the reasons I was drawn to the book is that it’s an argument that you shouldn’t have to make. It’s one of the most obvious things that any human should be able to recognize which is this – the fossil fuels have improved life so much that there’s no one in this world would choose to go back to the time before –
Glenn: Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.
Stu: …in reality. They all have iPhones to tell us they would –
Glenn: No –
Stu: …go back to –
Glenn: I’m telling you. Don’t you remember in – during the – one of those people that were peeing all over themselves to –[0:10:03]
Stu: Occupy Wall Street.
Glenn: Occupy Wall Street. During the Occupy Wall Street thing, they were saying that we had sent one of our reporters down. They said you realize people will starve to death. You realize that. That will work. You’ll starve to death. Well, that’s okay. We just need to get closer to a Gregorian [0:10:23] [Phonetic] culture. It’s like no, again, people will –
Glenn: …starve to death and then they almost threw rocks at the guy who stood up and said, “Hey, you know what? Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, you guys, all have Apple iPhones. Steve Jobs is the guy you don’t like apparently.” And they’ve all threw rocks –
Glenn: …at him and said, “You’re right. We don’t like him.”
Stu: Sure, there are those protesters but I think there’s a lot of people who are average people who don’t think of themselves as, you know, crazy environmentalists who want to go back to M. Night Shyamalan’s The Village. They want –
Stu: …they’re people who respect capitalism. They understand that their lives are better with energy and things like that.
Glenn: But again –
Stu: But they see fossil fuels as inherently evil –
Glenn: because they don’t – nobody thinks through what fossil fuels have done for us.
Glenn: They don’t think that most of the clothes that you wear come from under the crust of the Earth. Almost everything that you have, everything that you do, it’s not just the gas in your car. It is medicine. It’s the pills that you take. It’s just about everything that you touch. Am I wrong?
Alex: No. You’re definitely – you’re definitely right about that. I mean there is this really interesting question for those of us who see the full value of fossil fuels why is it that people are against it. And in my view, it’s really the framework, the starting framework that we’re looking at it from. And this is actually why I said I’m actually quite popular where I live because I always start the argument the same way. I don’t start with fossil fuels. I start with, “What’s our goal? Say, can we agree that the goal should be to maximize human well-being?”
And most people will say yes. Even though they don’t think that way, they’re actually thinking in this greenway. If you make an explicit, they’ll say yeah. And I say, “Okay. Can we also agree that just like we need to look at the big picture with vaccine, so we need to look at all the positives and all the negatives in context with fossil fuels, right?”
So, not that we’re discounting any climate impact but we need to look at the whole picture. They’ll say, “Sure.” And once you’ve set that framework which is never used by anyone explicitly in the culture, you do what I do in the book which is pretty much you say, “Okay, let’s look at the benefits of using fossil fuels.” And you get to what – you’re talking about, Glenn, which is not just that it powers things but that it’s uniquely good at powering thing.
So, I use the steel versus wood analogy with skyscrapers. It’s not just that it can produce energy, but it can produce energy far more efficiently using far fewer resources and other things which means it can be more abundant and more affordable to billions of people. So, the fossil fuel industry should be bragging, “We’ve got the best product on the market. We have a superior product.”
Instead what are they doing? They say, “Well, we’re trying as hard as we can to use the loser product, solar and wind –
Glenn: Let me ask you – yeah.
Alex: And someday we’ll go beyond petroleum and hit that ideal of –
Alex: …sunbeams and wind gusts instead of ancient dead plants.
Glenn: So – right. So, let me ask you this. How do you feel about people like BP? Because honestly, we’ve talked about this a million times. I’m in the oil business. I’m in –
Glenn: …the oil business. I would be on the front line of saying, “Look how good our product is.”
Glenn: It’s like if you’re making Cap’n Crunch and you’re like, “Yeah, you know, our cereal is really bad for your kids. Eat a little bit of it while we try to come up with some other cereal.”
Stu: We’re working on putting kale in to the Cap’n Crunch, we promise –
Glenn: You’re never going to buy –
Alex: They’re usually much more justified than thinking that about oil because you can say too much sugar is a problem.
Stu: Yeah. [Laughter]
Alex: Too much oil – no, more oil is the solution –
Alex: …more probably –
Glenn: So –
Alex: …can’t be solved by –
Glenn: So –
Alex: …by more oil.
Glenn: …so what do you say to those oil companies that aren’t taking your – they should be the ones that are – they should be paying you for this book. They should be putting this in every library in every school.
Stu: It should be free at every gas station.
Glenn: It should be free at every gas station.
Alex: That idea, I would – I have not –
Glenn: You like that.
Alex: …suggested that. No, that’s particularly good. I’m going to –
Alex: …I’m going to propose that one. I do –
Alex: …I do over the past couple years as, you know, I spent about five years developing these ideas and I never met one person from the industry. I didn’t know anybody. You know, people think, “Oh, you must be paid,” “You must have gotten…” nonsense.
Glenn: You should be.
Alex: I grew up in – well, no, they should buy the book. But over the years, what I – the last couple of years –
Glenn: In large quantities –
Alex: What’s that?
Glenn: In very –
Alex: Very large quantities.
Alex: Very large. You know, $3 a book isn’t going to, you know, get me that –
Alex: …Laguna Beach –
Alex: I don’t know. But seriously, I have made the case to them. Look, you’re positioning yourself as the tobacco industry. You’re saying, “We’re an addiction.” And then you’re saying, “But guess what? We’re going to create more tobacco jobs. Don’t you want jobs?” But if the tobacco industry said, “Let’s build more tobacco factories.” Don’t you support it because it’ll create more tobacco jobs?
Glenn: You say no –
Alex: You would say no.
Glenn: …you’re creating cancer –
Alex: …we don’t want jobs destroying the world. We want jobs –
Alex: …improving the world. And that’s really resonated and I would say that the industry has started getting better.[0:15:01]
You know, and we’re trying to create resources for companies to do better messaging. But it takes a while because they’ve grown up in the whole environment of not thinking about things big picture. Not thinking in terms of human life. They’ve grown up being intellectual parasites from the greens.
And imagine their PR people. Their PR people didn’t come to the oil industry mostly because they’re so passionate about oil and they get the moral case for oil. They came with a PR education. So, if your PR people aren’t even convinced that you’re good, how are they going to convince anyone else?
Glenn: Right, it’s great. [Music] Alex Epstein, The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels is the name in the book and it’s available everywhere except gas stations, unfortunately. But Alex is here a and he is – he is a philosopher who is trying to teach us to change the way we think about fossil fuels.
Let’s go to the increase in CO2 is causing climate-related deaths and – and when the truth is we’re actually saving lives because of fossil fuels. Go.
Alex: It’s really weird how we think about climate in a way that completely defies common sense. What is climate? Climate is just the range in frequency of certain types of weather. And if someone said, “Hey, I want to make sure people are safe from climate. Let’s find the most efficient solution.” You’d probably say – you wouldn’t say, “It’s – let me not drive an SUV. That’s going to – that’s going to protect people from…” you’d probably say, “Let’s develop countries. Let’s allow them to make themselves progressively climate proof. Let’s take a place you have a hundred thousand deaths and reduce the death count to a hundred because of infrastructure.”
Glenn: Like we did in California with earthquakes.
Alex: Yeah. So, what the story of climate in the last eighty years is by using fossil fuels, we’ve progressively climate-proofed civilization particularly the more developed world that we have fossil fuels. And so, what’s happened is climate-related deaths have gone down by a rate of 98%. Is that means your chance of dying from extreme heat –
Alex: …or extreme cold or wildfire is 150th of what it used to be? Yeah –
Glenn: It’s gone down 98% –
Alex: 98% –
Glenn: …in a hundred years?
Alex: In eighty years. That’s when you have –
Alex: …data start.
Alex: So, drought-related deaths are down 99.98%. So, you think when people are complaining about drought which just means less water than you expected, they would kind of be interested in let’s be interested in ways to purify water, to move water, to move food from, you know, non-drought areas to drought areas. That’s the amazing thing in the US. We don’t have one drought recorded death in the last ten years.
Stu: Wow. Wow.
Glenn: The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels is the name of the book back in just a second. The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels, we have the author, Alex Epstein on with us. And we’re just kind of going through some of the stats on life expectancy and how we have climate-proofed because of fossil fuels. The Western world has been able to climate-proofed themselves and we haven’t had any drought – we haven’t had any deaths in the last ten years from drought here in the United States.
Deaths all around the world, you said went down 98% climate-related deaths down 98% in the last 80 years. That’s remarkable.
Alex: It’s remarkable that it’s never cited. I mentioned earlier that we’re taught to focus on let’s minimize our impact on the Earth. That’s our standard of value. That’s how we measure whether we’re good. And we’re not taught to think about maximizing human well-being.
And one aspect of that is we’re not shown any human-related stats. Everyone talks about the PPM of CO2 in the atmosphere were .04% now. We used to be at .03%. This is the debacle of the century. Nobody points out that, “Hey, we’ve got a 67 year increased life expectancy over the last thirty years.” Shouldn’t that matter to anybody? And why doesn’t it?
Glenn: Make the case of that life expectancy is coming from fossil fuels and can’t be had elsewhere.
Alex: Well, I mean can’t be – you know, in the future, you certainly want new and improved which is probably going to meet nuclear ultimately. But –
Glenn: Wait, wait, wait, wait. Let’s stop there for second –
Glenn: …because nuclear drives me out of my mind because as I drove the new hydrogen car from GM –
Alex: Uh huh.
Glenn: …before the administration killed it and gave us the all new Chevy Volt.
Alex: Uh huh.
Glenn: And that was an amazing car. And if we had nuclear energy, we can make hydrogen all night long when everybody’s lights are out. We can make hydrogen all night long.
Alex: Uh huh.
Glenn: We have a never-ending supply of it. It’s clean. There is zero admissions from hydrogen, zero admissions from nuclear energy. It gets rid of all the CO2 arguments. It’s super clean, super, you know, super safe unless you build it on an earthquake fault line or you let the Russians do it, it’s – or the Iranians. It’s super safe.
What the hell are doing? Why are we not using – why are we not using nuclear fuel?[0:20:00]
Alex: Well, again, if you actually want to evaluate things rationally, you want to focus on life-based statistics. So, if you want to look at what’s the safest source of energy, you might want to look at which has the fewest deaths per unit of energy produced.
Glenn: Which does?
Alex: Nuclear by an insane, insane long shot like unbelievable –
Glenn: It has to be –
Alex: …the fossil fuels compared to people falling off the roofs with their solar panels –
Alex: …you know, whatever –
Alex: There’s no comparison –
Stu: …deaths of coal mining in China, for example, every single.
Glenn: Oh, yeah.
Alex: You know –
Glenn: And we got to believe that the oil rigs around the world and all – I mean it’s –
Glenn: …dangerous –
Alex: No, no –
Alex: …those are completely worth it, you know, the people I mean leaving aside China, you know –
Alex: …a lot of dictatorship but in the US, you know, people choose to mine coal, that’s a virtuous thing they take on certain risk. I don’t think people realize there are many other industries that are riskier than coal miner.
Glenn: Sure, yeah.
Alex: That’s fine but people concerned about safety, not just of the workers. I mean of people surrounding which is the main concern because you have a right to decide your own risk. But not a right to put everyone else with – expose them to undo risk.
So, it’s just fascinating that nuclear has by far the safest track record. And I talked about this a little bit in chapter 2 of The Moral Case but you can read other books on this. It is so safe just the technology of it makes it so much safer than anything else because a nuclear power plant can’t explode.
This is what people don’t get. The best book ever written on nuclear and maybe on energy is called The Health Hazards of Not Going Nuclear by Petr Beckmann. And he has this great line in response to the idea that what if a terrorist blows up a nuclear power plant? And his response says if a terrorist blows up a nuclear power plant, he should be awarded a Nobel Prize because he will have discover a principle of physics that does not exist.
Glenn: Okay. But what they’re saying is the spirit of that warning is you could fly a plane in to a, you know, a cooling tower and then all of that dangerous stuff goes out in the atmosphere. That –
Alex: But what is that mean? I mean but if –
Glenn: I have no idea. I’m –
Alex: …I highly recommend that book because it goes in to every possible worst-case scenario but –
Glenn: What is the name of the book again?
Alex: It’s called The Health Hazards of Not Going Nuclear. It’s a fantastic book. Not is capitalized N, capital O, capital T. It’s really fantastic. Beckmann was just an amazing thinker. Unfortunately, died fairly early but –
Glenn: Nuclear exposure?
Alex: No, no –
Alex: …probably if we had had more nuclear, he would have lived longer –
Alex: …because we’ve had more innovation. But yeah – if you just look at what all this boils down to because there’s no actual evidence that it’s more dangerous than all the evidence that it’s actually safer to generate energy by a radioactivity, it comes down to it’s unnatural to use radiation, to use radioactivity. It’s somehow wrong. And this is the whole anti-impact –
Glenn: The sun –
Alex: We should be minimizing our impact on the world in – and so let’s use the natural sun. Let’s not use unnatural nuclear power playing god tampering of nature, whatever euphemism you want to use.
Glenn: [Laughter] Geez.
Alex: That’s the whole perspective that justify shutting down all of our best source of energy. Same thing with hydro. Let’s not disturb the pristine rivers. It’s like, don’t you say the world’s going to end from global warming and you’re not willing to damn a river to prevent. How much do you care about life, human life?
Glenn: Amazing. Okay, so now –
Pat: Well, the death toll from nuclear power plants the worldwide except from the inception, it’s pretty high.
Pat: 56, right?
Stu: Isn’t it 56?
Alex: Yeah, from one without a containment –
Alex: …building and not a modern plant –
Pat: If you include Chernobyl worldwide –
Pat: …it’s 56.
Alex: What’s the death rate from Soviet toasters, that’s what I want to know.
Pat: Probably 156.
Glenn: What – let’s –
Pat: …the deaths –
Pat: …in America is zero.
Glenn: Tell me – I told my son, my 10-year-old son, that fact. He said, “Well, but nuclear energy…” 10. I don’t even know where he gets it. He lives at my house.
Glenn: I don’t even know where gets this. He says what nuclear energy is really. And I said, “That’s not.” I said, “You know, how many people have died from a nuclear accident?” “No.” “Under a hundred.” “No. Dad, there was like bad here, right?” “No.”
Pat: No, none here –
Glenn: Where are you getting this?
Pat: None here. Not in Japan.
Stu: Yeah, we do the Fukushima –
Glenn: If you take out –
Glenn: …if you take out Chernobyl, how many deaths from nuclear?
Stu: Zero. I mean there – you know, there’s probably been workers who died in plants –
Alex: I mean you can fall like in –
Stu: Yeah –
Alex: …in Fukushima, you know, like some – there’s a fall or something like that –
Alex: …but like the people in that plant –
Stu: Nobody died from the actual –
Alex: …were protected –
Alex: …unlike the 20,000 people who died – it’s like nature kills 20,000 people and man gets the blame for the nuclear power plant that shielded the people who were inside.
Stu: Yeah. You know, Glenn, you turned me in to a book years ago which was if I can remember –
Glenn: Physics for Presidents?
Stu: …Physics for Presidents or –
Stu: …Physics –
Glenn: Physics for Future Presidents.
Stu: Future Presidents –
Glenn: It’s fantastic –
Stu: And it argues –
Stu: …it’s –
Alex: I don’t read it yet.
Stu: It’s not a conservative book by any means.
Stu: You know, it’s not an industry book. It’s Physics book. But in there, they make a really logical argument that it was bad policy to evacuate the area around –[0:25:01]
Alex: That’s where the deaths come from. And you know, Fukushima and three-mile – I mean think about you have elderly populations often, a forced evacuation. They rushed out. They’re given all this propaganda that, you know, increases their stress levels. If – and then – so there’s the death toll from the environmentalist, environmentalist cause death tolls relating to nuclear propaganda.
And then of course, all the preventable deaths that occur because you don’t have a nuclear power which, you know, because it’s a completely clean burning source of power, you know, clean generating source of power that would be healthier than anything else. Plus, you just – if you have less power in the system, you have less ability to improve your life. And this goes back to your earlier question before I created this big nuclear diversion –
Alex: …which is how do you connect things to fossil fuels. And the key is getting what energy is because most people have no idea how valuable energy is. So, energy is our ability to use machines to improve our lives. Every human being in the United States has an average of 96 machine servants doing work on his behalf. You know, we, ourselves, are very weak. Right? Physically, we’re very weak. That’s why we’re in a life expectancy of 30 because we can’t do much work.
But if we have machines to do work for us, we can get so much done. We can build hospitals. You know, we can build roads. We can improve our lives in many ways –
Glenn: You say the average person has nine machines?
Alex: No, 96 – it’s like they’re 96 machine Glenn Beck’s out there – I mean given your income, more than that. But –
Glenn: [Laughter] Stu: [Laughter]
Alex: …yeah, 96 machine Glenn Beck’s doing your work –
Glenn: I just like –
Glenn: I just want –
Glenn: …all the people on the left know there are 96 – there are more than 96 of me out there –
Glenn: …and they’re machines.
Alex: Yeah. They haven’t replicated all of the vocal talent –
Alex: …but yeah, we’re taking up 96 Alex machines that could make the arguments all around –
Alex: …96 shows at a time. But it is important that if you get that everything in our lives improve by machines and the machines if they don’t have fuel, they die, they don’t work. They’re just like us. So, fossil fuels are the best source ever of machine calories. They give all of our machines the calories they need to work. And if those calories become scarce or they become expensive or they become unreliable, everything starts to shut down. I mean certainly Mercury Studios, you know, but a lot of stuff besides that the agriculture shuts –
Alex: …down. And every cent you add say to the price of oil, that means the diesel fuel on the tractor that grows our food becomes more expensive. That means our fertilizer becomes more expensive. So, energy is fundamental. It’s not any other industry. It’s the industry that powers every other industry. And if you get that, so if you get the value of energy and then you get the superiority of fossil fuels, then you see that it’s – you would expect it to have massive improvements if you could use more of this amazing substance.
And so, historically, we see these amazingly positive correlations between fossil fuels and everything and given what I just explained, what I elaborated on the book, that’s a very casual [0:27:52] [Phonetic] relationship. It’s not a random correlation that we have climate-related deaths go down as fossil fuels use goes up.
Glenn: Okay. So, the name of the book is The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels, I just have to ask you this question. Where are you going from here? What are you going to do – I mean nobody’s listening to this now. I mean this is getting –
Alex: I just got on Glenn Beck.
Glenn: I know. I know. How sad. But, you know, this is not a growth industry or do you think it is that people are going to suddenly wake up and we’re going to get – somehow or another, we’re going to break free of this oppressive system that is jamming this point of view down our throats?
Alex: I mean I think it’s a huge, huge growth industry and I think that the book when people read it is incredibly well-received. I mean I think Stu was a great example. He read it –
Glenn: Yeah, yeah.
Alex: He – you know, you interviewed me on that show and you’d really internalized a lot of the arguments. I think that you found some of them clarifying. You like the way it framed things and hopefully, that allowed you to become more effective in communicating those views to others.
Alex: So, it’s designed to empower people and you know, so far, tens of thousands of people have been empowered. I think that’s pretty good.
Glenn: Can I ask you this? If we had a group of people that we wanted to give this book to and then bring them in for a studio audience. And that they have to read the book.
Alex: Uh huh.
Glenn: But making 96 Alex’s. If we got 96 people and they could internalize this. Would you help teach them how to make the argument? Because I think that’s what we need. We all need to know how to make the argument –
Glenn: …for fossil fuels.
Alex: Yeah, I do. I would love to do it. I mean anything you want to set up, I’d be happy to do. Companies have started requesting this and I’m helping them. And you know, that’s a lot of the mission as you indicated. It should be is to figure out how to take this core case which everyone needs to know the facts. Everyone needs to know how to frame it. And then apply it to every day to day issue. And apply it to every situation.
Because, you know, someone – imagine you’re in the oil industry. Someone comes up to you and says, “You work in oil? Like how dare you? What do you do?” And I –
Glenn: Not in Texas. They don’t do that.
Alex: Yeah, I know. Well, in Laguna Beach if somebody is in –[0:30:00]
Glenn: Yeah, I know.
Alex: But there are ways of framing things that, you know, fortunately, having thought about it, having come to this from the opposite view and having just talk to thousands of people, I have a lot of experience and have friends. So, I’d love to share that with people.
Glenn: That’d be great, great. Thank you so much, Alex. I appreciate it.
Alex: Well, thank you. Thank you for having me on.
Glenn: You bet. The name of the book is The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels, highly recommend it. This has been an entertaining and informative hour. He was a fascinating, fascinating guy. Obviously, he has spent very little time last five years around people and just around facts. I mean this guy has really done a lot of –
Stu: …seem personable. I don’t know why you framed it that way.
Glenn: Not at all. I mean he just done a ton of –
Stu: Yeah, he really has –
Glenn: You know, you’re not getting to his knowledge level on this, you know, by not just sitting at home and just reading and researching.
Stu: Yeah, and you’re going through there and there’s just all those arguments you’ve heard. One of the – you know, one of the things he takes a part in there in-depth is the 97% of climatologists agree that –
Glenn: Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Stu: …the global warming is going to kill us all. And you know, like that argument is ripped apart in there. And that’s the sort of argument that is just – it’s an – it’s the brick wall at the end of the road from 99, you know, percent –
Stu: …of people. They say, “Oh, well, 97% of people agree. I’m sorry to disagree. Why are you talking about this?” Well, do you know how they got to that number? Do you know what it means? I do know that most of the people you called deniers agree with the statement that you’re talking about.
Glenn: Let’s have him back on.