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Friday, March 28, 2008

Bad Time for Green Schemes

Higher taxes to fight global warming would create political and economic disaster. By Phil Kerpen at National Review Online:

The numerous energy taxes and regulatory schemes being proposed internationally, federally, and locally in the name of fighting global warming are a dire threat to freedom and prosperity. The costs associated with some of these proposals — both in dollars and lost liberty — are staggering. But the political costs of “being green,” and taxing green, may be just as high.

A recent Gallup poll reveals that the general economic situation is far and away the top concern among voters, and that high energy prices are tied with health care as the third biggest concern. Global warming, as such, doesn’t even register on the list. And related though ambiguous issues like “lack of energy sources” and “environment/pollution” rank near the bottom, registering just 1 or 2 percent.

But that’s not stopping politicians from pursuing feel-good and supposedly “costless” environmental policies that always draw the adulation of the media elites. Governors from both parties are appointing climate commissions while ceding control of the process to liberal outside consultants. (This can lead to some disturbing results, as my friend Paul Chesser at Climate Strategies Watch has been documenting.) Bureaucrats in California have proposed placing radio control devices in thermostats so that the government can decide how hot or cold homes and businesses should be. International negotiators and U.N. officials are touting vast redistributions of wealth under the banner of global warming. And perhaps most disturbing of all, the costly Lieberman-Warner legislation now in the U.S. Senate could come up for a vote in the next couple of months.

If the economy is indeed the top concern of voters, this bill is a surefire political disaster.
Read the whole thing.

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