Los Nobel, por fin

Ayer se celebraron las dos entregas de los premios Nobel. Palabras que los laureados dijeron durante la ceremonia que vale la pena leer:

Al Gore, Nobel de la Paz (compartido con el Panel Intergubernamental sobre Cambio Climático):

Sobre su cambio de carrera
"Seven years ago tomorrow, I read my own political obituary in a judgment that seemed to me harsh and mistaken — if not premature. But that unwelcome verdict also brought a precious if painful gift: an opportunity to search for fresh new ways to serve my purpose.

Sobre la actitud ambivalente de la mayoría de los líderes mundiales hacia el cambio climático
However, despite a growing number of honorable exceptions, too many of the world's leaders are still best described in the words Winston Churchill applied to those who ignored Adolf Hitler's threat: "They go on in strange paradox, decided only to be undecided, resolved to be irresolute, adamant for drift, solid for fluidity, all powerful to be impotent."

Sobre por qué el impuesto al carbono es buena idea
And most important of all, we need to put a price on carbon — with a CO2 tax that is then rebated back to the people, progressively, according to the laws of each nation, in ways that shift the burden of taxation from employment to pollution. This is by far the most effective and simplest way to accelerate solutions to this crisis.

Sobre por qué EEUU y China son los forajidos en cambio climático
The world needs an alliance — especially of those nations that weigh heaviest in the scales where Earth is in the balance. I salute Europe and Japan for the steps they've taken in recent years to meet the challenge, and the new government in Australia, which has made solving the climate crisis its first priority. But the outcome will be decisively influenced by two nations that are now failing to do enough: the United States and China. While India is also growing fast in importance, it should be absolutely clear that it is the two largest CO2 emitters — most of all, my own country — that will need to make the boldest moves, or stand accountable before history for their failure to act. Both countries should stop using the other's behavior as an excuse for stalemate and instead develop an agenda for mutual survival in a shared global environment.

Doris Lessing, Nobel de Literatura:
Sobre los peligros de blogging y "blugging" (no se a que se refiere con este último)
What has happened to us is an amazing invention, computers and the internet and TV, a revolution. This is not the first revolution we, the human race, has dealt with. The printing revolution, which did not take place in a matter of a few decades, but took much longer, changed our minds and ways of thinking. A foolhardy lot, we accepted it all, as we always do, never asked “What is going to happen to us now, with this invention of print?” And just as we never once stopped to ask, How are we, our minds, going to change with the new internet, which has seduced a whole generation into its inanities so that even quite reasonable people will confess that once they are hooked, it is hard to cut free, and they may find a whole day has passed in blogging and blugging etc.

Sobre la universalidad de la literatura
The storyteller is deep inside everyone of us. The story-maker is always with us. Let us suppose our world is attacked by war, by the horrors that we all of us easily imagine. Let us suppose floods wash through our cities, the seas rise… but the storyteller will be there, for it is our imaginations which shape us, keep us, create us – for good and for ill. It is our stories, the storyteller, that will recreate us, when we are torn, hurt, even destroyed. It is the storyteller, the dream-maker, the myth-maker, that is our phoenix, what we are at our best, when we are our most creative.

Eric Maskin, Nobel de Economía (compartido con Leonid Hurwicz y Roger Myerson)

Sobre la economía como una ciencia imperfecta e idealista
Robert Kennedy once said, "Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not." In effect, the first line – seeing things as they are and asking why – perfectly describes positive economics, which explains economic events that have happened, or, better yet, forecasts what will happen. Economic forecasting has actually got pretty good over the years, though admittedly we don't always get it right. Still, it is Kennedy's second line – dreaming of things that never were – that I want to stress, because it captures the part of economics dearest to me: normative economics, the study of the things that never were but ought to be. In particular, it describes the subject of this year's Economics Prize, mechanism design.

Sobre como los Nobel le permiten a los economistas sentirse como estrellas de rock
But two months ago scarcely anyone but economists had even heard of mechanism design. Suddenly, it has notoriety worthy of an Elvis Presley. Now, I have nothing against Elvis. But somehow he manages to attract a huge public following without even trying. Indeed, he can't very well try since he's been dead for 30 years. Yet, isn't it remarkable that, for one week a year, that kind of attention is focused not just on economics, but on physics, chemistry, medicine, and literature.