Instead Of Pledging To Change The World, Pledge To Change Prediction Markets

Source: Astral Codex Ten
by Scott Alexander

“In April, Joe Biden pledged to halve US emissions (from their 2005 max) by 2030. This is nice, but I can’t help but remember eg Australia’s 2009 Copenhagen summit pledge to decrease emissions 5% by 2020 (in fact, they increased 17%). Or Brazil’s pledge at the same summit to cut emissions 38% by 2020 (in fact, they increased 45%). Or Canada’s pledge for -20% (they got +1%). I’m not cherry-picking bad actors here, I’m just going through the alphabet (pledges source, outcomes source). For that matter, what about George W. Bush’s pledge to return Americans to the moon by 2020? All of these pledges have one thing in common — they expire long after the relevant officials are out of power (and in Biden’s case, probably dead).” (06/07/21)