If we chose an artificially low discount rate of 2 percent (so as to make greenhouse gas cuts profitable) we would leave investments to future generations that were only worth 2 percent. If on the other hand our discount rate was set at 5 percent, we would spend the money on projects that make a profit of more than 5 percent.
Id. at 314-15.
One of the most peculiar illusions of economists is a doctrine that might be called the Immaculate Conception of the Indifference Curve, that is, that tastes are simply given, and we cannot inquire into the process by which they are formed. This doctrine is literally for the birds, whose tastes are largely created for them by their genetic structures, and can therefore be treated as a constant in the dynamics of bird societies.
Kenneth E. Boulding, Economics as a Moral Science, 59 Am. Eco. Rev. 1, 12 (1969).