Obama Administration

Obama's Climate Five-Year Plan

The president proposes ecological central planning to solve global warming

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The central planners in communist governments were notorious for issuing massively detailed top-down five-year plans to manage every facet of their economies. The accumulating inefficiency and waste produced by this sort of rigid planning led eventually to the demise of those regimes.

Speaking at Georgetown University on Tuesday, President Barack Obama outlined his "new national climate action plan," which amounts to a federal top-down five-year plan—although he has only four years to implement it. Obama's plan ambitiously seeks to control nearly every aspect of how Americans produce and consume energy. The goal is to cut the emissions of greenhouse gases and thus stop boosting the temperature of the earth. The actual result will be to infect the economy with the same sort of sclerosis seen in other centrally planned nations.

Let's take a look at four aspects of the Obama five-year plan: rationing carbon, boosting renewable energy and energy efficiency, subsidizing climate resilience, and negotiating international limits on emissions.

Rationing Carbon

Way back in January 2008, when he was just a senator running for the presidency, Obama told the San Francisco Chronicle that he "was the first to call for a 100 percent auction on the cap and trade system, which means that every unit of carbon or greenhouse gases emitted would be charged to the polluter." That way, he explained, "if somebody wants to build a [conventional] coal-powered plant, they can; it's just that it will bankrupt them because they're going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that's being emitted."

Five years later, Obama is doing what he said he'd do. His plan directs the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) "to work expeditiously to complete carbon pollution standards for both new and existing power plants." The EPA is still formulating those standards, but in their current draft form they would limit new power plants to emitting 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt-hour of electricity generated. Since conventional coal-fired plants typically emit around 1,800 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt-hour generated, the new rule would essentially be a ban on building new coal-fired power plants.

If the EPA were to establish a uniform 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt-hour standard, that would eliminate nearly all coal-fired plants in the United States, which generated about 37 percent of the country's electricity last year. In comparison, natural gas plants generated 30 percent, nuclear 19 percent, hydropower 7 percent, wind 3.5 percent, biomass 1.4 percent, petroleum 1 percent, geothermal 0.4 percent, and solar 0.1 percent.

Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency

Obama did say in 2008 that he supported the development of clean coal technologies. The president's new national climate plan includes $8 billion in loan guarantees for "advanced fossil energy projects," presumably including clean coal technologies involving carbon capture and sequestration (CCS). The Department of Energy is currently supplying $1 billion in a stimulus grant to the FutureGen CCS project in Illinois.

The FutureGen project proposes to capture 90 percent of the carbon dioxide emitted by its 200-megawatt plant and inject about a million tons annually underground. If it works, the overall emissions from a coal-fired plant using CCS would certainly meet a 1,000 pounds per megawatt-hour standard. However, the Energy Information Administration's 2013 analysis of the levelized costs (including capital, fuel, and operation and maintenance) of new power generation sources reports that in 2018 CCS would boost the cost of coal-fired electricity by about 35 percent over conventional generation. Assuming coal still accounted for 37 percent of generation, a quick calculation implies that monthly household electricity bills could jump from an average of $110 to more than $124.

The president's national climate plan also sets "a goal to double renewable electricity generation once again by 2020." That would mean that wind power would produce 7 percent and solar power 0.2 percent of America's energy by then. For what it's worth, the Energy Information Administrtion estimates the levelized costs in 2018 for conventional coal would be $100 per megawatt-hour; conventional natural gas $67; nuclear $108; wind $87; and solar photovoltaic $144.

In his Georgetown speech, President Obama declared, "Countries like China and Germany are going all out in the race for clean energy." The president did not note that German electricity prices have soared as the country subsidized the installation of solar and wind power. German households in 2012 paid an average of 35 cents per kilowatt-hour, compared the U.S. average of 12 cents per kilowatt-hour. If Americans were paying for power at German rates, our households' monthly power bills (at 940 kilowatt-hours) would average $330 instead of $110, or an additional $2,640 per year for household electricity.  The president also neglected to mention that China's much-lauded and much-subsidized solar panel industry is going through a bit of a financial rough patch.

The president plans to mandate improvements in the energy efficiency of appliances and buildings. This makes a kind of central-planning sense. Since his new regulations will raise the cost of electric power to consumers, he wants to lower the amount they use so that their monthly bills don't go up. The hope is that consumers won't notice that they are paying more for less energy.

In any case, thanks to market incentives, American consumers and businesses are already engaged in continually improving their energy efficiency. The amount of energy it takes to produce a dollar of GDP has fallen by more than 50 percent over the past 40 years, mostly without the help of central planners. That's not enough for the president, who wants to double energy productivity between now and 2030.

Despite the spectacular flameouts of numerous federally subsidized "green energy" companies—Solyndra, Ener1, Abound Solar, Beacon Power, Fisker Automobile, Range Fuels, and others—the president still thinks that wise federal bureaucrats can profitably invest about $8 billion annually in "clean energy research, development, and deployment." He also reiterated his support for the "renewable fuels standard" that requires refiners to add billions of gallons of bioethanol made from corn to gasoline. Due largely to the mandate, 43 percent of America's corn crop ended up in our gas tanks last year. Surely, plowing up the extra farmland to grow corn for fuel ethanol can't be good for the natural environment.

And the president commended Republicans in Congress for supporting $12 billion in tax credits for wind energy manufacturers and producers. If bioethanol and wind power really could compete with conventional power sources, they wouldn't need mandates and subsidies.

Climate Resilience

The president's plan proposes to aid communities to get ready for the deleterious effects of future global warming. Planners, businesses, and citizens should indeed take into account the increased possibility of floods, droughts, and rising sea levels. But it is questionable that they need a proliferation of federal rules and bureaucrats to help them.

Interestingly, the national climate action plan failed to mention two proposals that wouldn't cost the taxpayers a dime and yet would strongly encourage people to take account of how the weather might affect them. One is to eliminate federal flood insurance. The program encourages people to destroy natural flood defenses such as swamps and dunes and to build in places that are prone to inundation; we'd be far better off without it. Second, in order to help communities cope better with droughts, cut all federal irrigation water and irrigation efficiency subsidies and establish water markets.

International Limits

The president did offer two good ideas on the international front. One is for the countries of the world to eliminate $500 billion in annual subsidies to fossil fuels. Another is to begin World Trade Organization negotiations toward free trade in environmental goods, such as products used for managing pollution or harvesting renewable energy. He should take the second idea further, and eliminate trade barriers for all goods. Not only would that likely increase gobal GDBP by as much as $1 trillion per year, but the added wealth would enhance community resilience to whatever climate change occurs.

His other international ideas are less inspiring. As Obama noted approvingly, United Nations negotiations are supposed to result in some kind of legally binding global treaty by 2015 to cut greenhouse emissions, a kind of global 50-year climate and energy plan. Given the utter failure of the Kyoto Protocol, the predecessor accord, there is little reason to believe that most of the rest of the world will agree to pay substantially more for energy.

At Georgetown, the president warned that "the special interests and their allies in Congress" will say his plan "will kill jobs and crush the economy, and basically end American free enterprise as we know it." I don't think Obama's national climate action plan is going to kill American free enterprise. But its costly patchwork of programs, directives, regulations, grants, and initiatives will surely wound it.

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116 responses to “Obama's Climate Five-Year Plan

  1. You know who else had five-year plans?

    1. When the Soviets had them, they often involved “limited capitalism.” What’s Obama going to use, “limited communism?”

          1. A Great Leap?

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      1. Well, if they planned on running the worst performance per dollar spent club in MLB, they’re on the 13th consecutive successful five year plan.

        1. But Theo will turn things around. You’ll see!

      1. I smiled.

      2. That’s good. Very good.

    2. I came to this article specifically to post that very comment if no one else had.

      Very first one. FOE never disappoints.

      1. That sounds like a challenge!

  2. Amerikan GOSPLAN.

    Really, it will work this time for sure

    /Bullwinkle

    1. But that trick never works!

  3. When I grew up in the 80s, us crazy capitalists would mock the Soviets and their Five-Year Plans.

    My oh my have times changed.

    1. We won the Cold War only to lose it. The ghost of Khrushchev laughs.

      1. We won the Cold War only to lose it.

        We have been defeated by victory.

    2. Yeah, what’s up with these five-year plans, anyway? Did I wake up one morning in Soviet Russia?

      1. He made it a 5 year plan so that it won’t end until he is out of office. Then he can’t be blamed when it fails.

  4. Everybody knows the only reason the centrally-planned economies failed/are failing, is because the hostility of the imperialist American war machine forces them to spend a disproportionate amount of their GDP on their armed forces, reducing the resources available for Great Social Justice.

    1. C’mon, Gojira. The right people weren’t in charge. Don’t be unreasonable.

      1. You know even if I bought into the Top Men theory, what the fuck makes anybody think THIS asshole is the “right” guy? He’s patently a cheat, liar, and all-around blackguard.

        1. To greenies and their ilk, so long as he’s shoving their vision down everyone’s throat, they couldn’t give a fuck. It’s about power and control, and so long as they get to taste it, they don’t care who actually implements their goals for them.

        2. blackguard

          RAAAAACIST!!!!!1111!!!!

          1. THANK YOU. Finally, somebody got it.

        3. Yeah, well, according to some folks, he’s just DREAMY!

    2. And maybe one day there will be a libertarian economy that works so you’ll have an alternative to propose.

      1. Tony| 6.28.13 @ 5:37PM |#
        “And maybe one day there will be a libertarian economy that works so you’ll have an alternative to propose.”

        Hong Kong, shithead.

        1. China has Hong Kong and several economically free-ish zones.

          The U.S. is doing the inverse, turning California and NYC into economic wastelands.

          Tony thinks this is a successful model.

  5. Obama told the San Francisco Chronicle that he “was the first to call for a 100 percent auction on the cap and trade system, which means that every unit of carbon or greenhouse gases emitted would be charged to the polluter.”

    Why only power plants? Why not anything that produces CO2, like Air Force One? Oh, he (the taxpayer, anyway) paid a green indulgence? All good, then.

    1. Gore had solar panels put on it.

    2. ….why not tax anything that exhales CO2, like humans. The whole war on CO2 is insanity.

  6. I guess we can drop the term watrmelons – green on the outside and red on the inside – and just refer to these scumbags as collectivist twits now?

    And yes, people like Obama do believe the wrong side and the wrong ideas won the Cold War. They may never come right out and admit it because they know it would harm them, but they sure as hell believe it so. That’s one of the reasons I despise progressives.

    1. Watermelons? RACIST!!!

      1. Wait ’til you find out about the people we called ‘fried chickens’.

        1. euphemistically known as the “alsos”

          1. I’m astonished no one caught my calling him a “blackguard” up there. I mean, how big a bait do people need?

      2. pretty sure the reference is to the Green movement…and possibly a book by James Delingpole, “Watermelons…The Green Movement’s True Colors,” hence green on teh outside, red on the inside. It’s a good book, you should read it!

  7. Yep, with only three and a half years to go and the knowledge that he won’t be regaining both houses in Congress again, he’s going to make his all-out push to try and destroy the American economy by dictatorial fiat now.

  8. I don’t think the president understands economics. He wants underwriting standards relaxed because homeowners are going to use less energy. But underwriting standards have nothing to do with how much energy is used. They have to do with how much energy costs a homeowner. Which will be more under his plan.

    President Obama’s climate change initiative is aimed at reducing household energy consumption and may impact underwriting standards on mortgages.

    The White House wants the Federal Housing Administration to hold a roundtable with lenders and “key stakeholders” in the housing industry this summer.

    The objective will be to “identify options for factoring energy efficiency into the mortgage underwriting and appraisal process upon the sale or refinancing of new and existing homes,” according to the “President’s Climate Action Plan” that was released on June 25.

    The White House wants FHA to hold the roundtable in July. So far, HUD has not responded to inquiries about the timing or location of this event.

    1. last 4 paragraphs are pasted from a trade article.

    2. PRX| 6.28.13 @ 1:50PM |#
      “I don’t think the president understands economics.”

      And the sun seems to rise in the east!

  9. I love how he thinks this is going to distract people from the myriad of scandals he is embroiled in at this point. The problem is, you can tell that he’s going to go full bore on this bullshit because he really does think that will distract enough people. He’s an extremely dangerous moron.

    1. It’s not working. You can already tell. He’s really very uninfluential for someone who gets elected supposedly on his cult of personality.

      1. Of course. And like a typical moron, you can tell he is going to just “double down” (the new meaning, not the actual blackjack meaning) because he will think he needs to just do it harder. Yay.

        1. The beatings will continue until the climate improves.

  10. My guess is that this is going to go nowhere.

    The CAGW cult has no idea what it is messing with… People would indulge their superstitions when they looked like they could be right, and the sacrifices the cultists demanded were minor.

    Nowadays, when an intelligent, scientifically minded person looks at the CAGW business, they pretty quickly recognize that they are full of shit, and they are about to make it very financially renumerative for people to start taking a hard look at them. And it won’t be one retired mining engineer who has to beg for money to attend conferences in England who will be raising red flags, but some very well heeled businesses, foundations and individuals.

    And a good portion of the U.S. is ready psychologically to stop complying with dictates coming out of DC, and once they realize their numbers the people in DC will become very much like the guys in Hitler’s bunker marshalling non-existent divisions while the rest of the world ignored their orders.

    Couldn’t have happened to a nicer bunch of people.

    1. Let’s hope you’re right. I think you probably are, but since you’re an idiot, I had better hedge my bets.

      1. “I had better hedge my bets.”

        Care to purchase a carbon credit/offset?

    2. Agreed, guarded comments from a surprising amount of professional colleagues suggest that the end of “voluntary compliance” is near, myself included.

      The unmitigated arrogance of this administration reveals their distance from the reality of daily life under their incoherent rule. Real people are making other plans; collapse once seemed the talking points of the unhinged, now it is the quiet conversation topic among those who pay attention.

  11. I wish this answered my questions of the other day, though perhaps even Bailey doesn’t have the information needed. First, what will all this cost? If it involves shutting down coal plants and replacing them, it sounds like it could be tens of billions, if not hundreds of billions or more. (Slightly offset by elimination of fossil fuel subsidies.)

    Second, what difference will it make? If it all happens, how much less CO2 will be in the atmosphere, and how much is that supposed to lower future temperatures? My guess is that even using the questionable assumptions of the doom mongers, we’re talking about a lowering of CO2 by some tiny fraction, and a lowering of projected temperatures by an infinitesimal fraction, like .0001 degrees. Which, of course, makes spending tens or hundreds of billions of dollars ridiculous.

    1. Every US plan has always involved negligible changes in global temperatures. Hell, Kyoto covered half the globe and everyone agreed that even it would not have measurably changed future temperatures. At this point Obama is simply using climate change alarmism as an excuse to do something he feels like doing for political reasons.

      1. Exactly. So the tactic to fight this is to get them to say what it would cost, and what temperature difference it would make. Once those numbers come out, the plan becomes indefensible to any reasonable person.

        1. Once those numbers come out, the plan becomes indefensible to any reasonable person.

          We seem to have a short supply of those. Just read the comments at places like HuffPo, WaPo, NYT, and virtually everywhere else. People do not seem to be reasonable much of the time. Team BLUE dies on a hill of gun control, Team RED dies on Mt. Abortion and GM.

          1. “We seem to have a short supply of those.”

            Keep in mind, this is a religious issue. Ending sin doesn’t have to be subject to cost/benefit analysis.

  12. Krugman LOVES. THIS. SHIT.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06…..ugman&_r=0

    In fact, serious new regulation of greenhouse emissions could be just what our economy needs.

    Feel the stupid.

    1. Damn you Brandon! It may look like I lost by 7 minutes. But really you lost by 6 hours!

    2. This is the best comment:

      So a war on coal will destroy jobs. Since when has that stopped progress?

      Remember record store owners? Milkmen? Traveling salesmen selling encyclopedias? Photo developers? Carriage makers?

      Republicans aren’t allowed to cry about ‘destroying jobs.’ Their entire party rests on the principle that the MARKET decides which jobs get destroyed or kept, not government.

      Besides, it’s likely a new breed of job will be much in demand: environmental janitors, cleaning up the mess left behind in the name of Jobs, and Greed, and the Market.

      So in one breath, he compares jobs destroyed by regulation to jobs which disappeared naturally, to jobs which are destroyed by regulation, then seems to vaguely insinuate that regulatin is part of the market, then lumps jobs in with greed and the market as supposedly bad things.

      I’m willing to bet this person is employed and has no idea what it’s like to be laid off, and furthermore, does not care.

      1. Besides, it’s likely a new breed of job will be much in demand: environmental janitors, cleaning up the mess left behind in the name of Jobs, and Greed, and the Market.

        This sounds like something I’d write if I were being super sarcastic. They are beyond parody.

        1. Let’s bomb Chicago to smithereens. (Or, if you like Nicole, we can bomb Pittsburgh instead.) Look at all the stimulus created by the rebuilding!

          1. I am also in Chicago. Fuck Nicole. I like myself.

            Pittsburgh it is.

          2. Look at all the stimulus created by the rebuilding!

            The broken window fallacy only applies when someone actually values the window.

      2. Well, if you believe TANSTAGI, regulation is part of the market. But that comment is still idiotic.

      3. What’s really shocking is, this comment was actually rated highly by other NYT readers:

        Obama would have shown real political guts and leadership if he had taken on the ethanol industry – that includes his home state farmers – who have forced the use of a ridiculously inefficient fuel on the driving public. Corn based ethanol is worse than no solution as the land, energy, fertilizers, etc. needed to grow the vast amounts of corn to supply this industry have distorted food supply production world-wide.

        In addition, mixing ethanol with gas is proven to increase fuel consumption by over 20% while having no positive environmental effect. Why do US politicians from both stripes – Dems and GOP – persist on this very damaging boondoggle which is wrecking havoc on the environment and food costs?

      4. I’m willing to bet this person is employed and has no idea what it’s like to be laid off

        Probably in academia or a think tank. The only people I’ve ever seen spew this much nonsense are academics who have convinced that they’re better than everyone else because they went to the RIGHT SCHOOLS.

      5. Hardcore progressives actually believe that voting is part of the free market.

    3. Krugman breaks windows like capn hook breaks clocks.

  13. Since no one reads the Friday Funnies, I’ll just post this here too.

    It’s all okay because Paul Krugman says Obama’s plan will be good for the economy.

  14. In discussion of this “climate change” farce, why do you let the leftoids get away with smuggling in the presumption that the US is the only country in the world that burns fossil fuels or creates pollution?

    We are not the big dog of pollution anymore. Obozo better start WW3 to bring environmental justice to the BRICs.

    1. because the leftoids, America is the alpha and omega of any social ill. Have you not been paying attention?

    2. This is what I always say now. I see no point in arguing about the validity of AGW and the contribution CO2 makes to it. Because even if it is as bad as teh worst prediction, people are going to keep burning fossil fuels as much as they can for as long as it makes economic sense. Even if the US and Europe stops all together, India, China, etc. are going to be there to take up the slack. Whatever global warming may happen will happen.

  15. I think I speak for everyone when I say that it is time for some sort of Great Leap Forward, or perhaps a Climate Revolution.

    1. Can we practice selective annihilation of mayors and government officials to create a vaccuum?

  16. What’s become blatantly obvious this past week is that the sycophants and political operatives in the system will never allow good news to pass.

    Racial situations have improved to the point that we no longer need a section of the Voting Rights Act? RACIST! The global temperature has been stable for 15 years, without any net warming? DENIALIST!

    There are too many people with vested interests in the machine, too many people who stand to gain from bad news and political lucre, to ever let it be replaced with something less oppressive. And the dolts voting let the pols get away with it every, single time. This is why we’re so fucked.

  17. “the special interests and their allies in Congress” will say his plan “will kill jobs and crush the economy, and basically end American free enterprise as we know it.”

    Obama: “Let me be clear: I consider this a feature, not a bug.”

  18. Obama also hinted strongly that he has no intention of approving the Keystone XL pipeline.

    1. It’s a libertarian nightmare anyways.

  19. I’m sure the special interests in Congress will love this five year plan, just like they loved his past handouts and bailouts.

  20. People bitching about higher energy prices are the ones asking for government handouts. Maybe it’s right that we pay more for energy instead of transferring much of the cost to the environment, hence other people. Maybe at typical American wages, we can’t afford to actually pay for the energy we use. I don’t see a free market solution to either problem.

    1. “People bitching about higher energy prices are the ones asking for government handouts. ”

      Who is asking for handouts and how are libertarians supportive of these handouts?

      “Maybe it’s right that we pay more for energy instead of transferring much of the cost to the environment, hence other people.”

      You know which disproportionately affects lower income individuals. Why do progressives hate poor people?

      “Maybe at typical American wages, we can’t afford to actually pay for the energy we use. I don’t see a free market solution to either problem.”

      Ah, a bonus minimum wage argument.

      Labor is a direct factor in the cost of goods. You increase the cost of low skilled labor, and guess who pays for it? Other low skilled laborers through higher costs.

      Completely and utterly negating any benefit.

      Oh and if you think that professionals are going to stand for their wages being equalized to their unskilled counterparts. I have a bridge to sell you.

      They will demand a wage increase as well. Further driving up prices.

    2. Tony| 6.28.13 @ 5:40PM |#
      “People bitching about higher energy prices are the ones asking for government handouts.”

      Started on the sauce early, did you shithead?
      I’m bitching about higher e prices and, no, I’m not asking for handouts. I’m asking that someone in DC grow a braincell and stop causing increases in e costs.

    3. “Maybe it’s right that we pay more for energy instead of transferring much of the cost to the environment, hence other people.”

      Unless you can demonstrate these actions will have a dramatic impact on costs imposed on “other people” via environmental degradation, this is a false choice. And there is no way on Mother Earth you are going to be able to demonstrate that. As such, it is very likely we will pay more, and there will be no return on the investment.

      “Maybe at typical American wages, we can’t afford to actually pay for the energy we use.”

      Median income in America is the highest in the world, save for Luxembourg. If we can’t afford to pay the price you and your ilk seek to extract, who can? What you just admitted is that your ideas are impossible to implement on a global level, thus rendering them useless.

      “I don’t see a free market solution to either problem.”

      Of course you don’t. That said, you don’t see any solution to the problem. Obama’s plan isn’t going to solve the problem. 100 such plans aren’t going to solve the problem.

  21. Americans consume too much energy. Rich Americans drive SUVs and live in big houses that are air conditioned in summer and heated in winter. Corporations waste huge amounts of energy and emit carbon pollution. The petroleum-capitalist complex controls the GOP and uses it to advance its wasteful anti-envirnomental agenda. The earth is in the balance, and greedy American capitalists are at the forefront of environmental waste and destruction. We must evolve toward becoming a more equitable and more sustainable society. The size of houses and cars should be strictly regulated to reduce waste and carbon pollution. Suburbia is wasteful, non-sustainable, and environmentally destructive. Americans should live in uniform housing that is equitable, sustainable and energy-efficient. They should use public transportation; private cars are an extravagance we can no longer afford. Time is running out; we only have a few years to save the planet from capitalist greed.

    1. Are you joking? I sadly can’t tell. I hear this stupidity all too often.

      1. Nixonfan is joking.

        But what he/she wrote is said very seriously by earnest young and not so young people in every fricken University town in this country.

        ‘Cept Texas A+M. Got no time for such nonsense, y’all.

    2. It’s Guy Laguy or some other sock.
      That sort of stupidity doesn’t get here by accident; it’s someone pushing the buttons s/he thinks will get a response.
      Neither shreek nor shithead post that sort of crap. Chad used to…

    3. It’s unsubtle parody.

    4. Humans are a blight upon the planet; they should all be killed, except for me and mine! And Al Gore… So we can fly jets around the planet, explaining to the unclean masses, how to kill each other in an environmentally friendly manner.

      1. “At its extreme, green ideology expresses itself in utter contempt for humanity. Reviewing Bill McKibben’s The End of Nature in the Los Angeles Times, National Park Service research biologist David M. Graber concluded with this stunning passage: ‘Human happiness, and certainly human fecundity, are not as important as a wild and healthy planet. I know social scientists who remind me that people are part of nature, but it isn’t true. Somewhere along the line?at about a billion years ago, maybe half that?we quit the contract and became a cancer. We have become a plague upon ourselves and upon the Earth. It is cosmically unlikely that the developed world will choose to end its orgy of fossil-energy consumption, and the Third World its suicidal consumption of landscape. Until such time as Homo sapiens should decide to rejoin nature, some of us can only hope for the right virus to come along.’

        From “Free Minds & Free Markets”, Pacific Research Institute for Public Policy, 1993, which is a compilation of 25 years of articles from Reason magazine, this one being “The Green Road to Serfdom”, April 1990, by Virginia I. Postrel.

        1. “It is hard to take such notions seriously without sounding like a bit of a kook yourself. But there they are?calmly expressed in the pages of a major, mainstream, Establishment newspaper by an employee of the federal government. When it is acceptable to say such things in polite intellectual company, when feel-good environmentalists tolerate the totalitarians in their midst, when sophisticates greet the likes of Graber with indulgent nods and smiles rather than arguments and outrage, we are one step further down another bloody road to someone’s imagined Eden. All the greens need is an opportunity and a Lenin.”
          From “Free Minds & Free Markets”, Pacific Research Institute for Public Policy, 1993, which is a compilation of 25 years of articles from Reason magazine, this one being “The Green Road to Serfdom”, April 1990, by Virginia I. Postrel.

          1. But don’t worry, Bee happy? Emperor Obama is just looking out for ALL of us (the whole hive). He wants to “Bee All He can Bee”? And what does He want to Bee (Besides the Queen and Drone of the Hive, I mean)? He wants to Bee our “Watermelon Lenin” of the Sacred Environment? Watermelon being green on the outside, red on the inside?

  22. “At Georgetown, the president warned that “the special interests and their allies in Congress” will say his plan “will kill jobs and crush the economy, and basically end American free enterprise as we know it.” I don’t think Obama’s national climate action plan is going to kill American free enterprise. But its costly patchwork of programs, directives, regulations, grants, and initiatives will surely wound it.”

    There will be another result.
    As in the RE bubble, the government regulates/distorts the market of a good which ends up causing the collapse of that market. The government then rushes in with further regulations, claiming it was the free market which caused the collapse. The market in that good is now under greater regulation; the ratchet is always toward control, with continuing collapses requiring increasing regulation.
    Similarly, we now have Obozoscare courtesy of Truman’s econ ignorance; again the ratchet moved in one direction only in the case of medical care.
    Now that asshole Obozo proposes to infect the market in energy with further regulations, which are guaranteed to cause distortion and collapse at some point, “requiring” further regulation to screw it up once again.

  23. Obamu said unto the masses, “It isn’t fair”, and so at long last the clay of the proletariat was formed into a modern sculpture of harmony and egalitarianism.

    Paulus Krugmanus, Court Economist
    2013 AD

    1. Yep, it has that ‘pronouncement’ ring to it; the foul stench of ‘ruling from on high’.
      Dunno how far it’ll go; that lying asshole has a solid record of claiming to do something and then doing nothing or the opposite.

  24. The planet’s co2 issues begin with China and end with India. Even the lefties should understand this.

    1. “We must lead the benighted races by example!”

    2. The planet’s co2 issues begin with China and end with India. Even the lefties should understand this.

      It’s almost like greenies aren’t really concerned about the environment.

      1. It’s almost like greenies aren’t really concerned about the environment.

        I’m sure the greenie peons are concerned. Their problem is that they are also unbelievably gullible and will eagerly swallow any b.s. they are fed that agrees with the end-of-the-world rhetoric from their masters.

  25. Interesting that the administration continues to ignore nuclear power in the climate debate. If carbon dioxide were really leading to the end of the world, we should be “all in” on nuclear. If we got 70-90% of our energy production from nuclear sources instead of the mess we have today we could have many of the “liberal dream” transportation systems, biofuels (or the chemical equivalent) and other things like water desalination plants and enough cheap energy for everyone to continue to maintain our “decadent” lifestyle.

    Instead, ask yourself why every wind farm and solar plant also has a nearby gas turbine plant? What ever happened to T. Boone Pickens’ plans for a wind and gas paradise? Why are we now finding out that the wind turbines aren’t producing anywhere near what their supporters promised?

    And the big question: Why are wind producers paying grid operators to take power from them when it isn’t wanted or needed?

    http://www.greentechmedia.com/…..power-5347

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/…..nergy.html

  26. HIDE THE DECLINE!!!!

  27. This is why I refer to the current regime as communists.

    They’re softer than the Russians, but not much.

    The carbon racket is analagous to organized crime and should be taken down with RICO indictments for everyone involved. From Albert Gore all the way down the food chain.

  28. To my libertarian friends:

    As great champions of property rights, I am sure you will respect my humble request that you keep all known pollutants that you generate on your own property, and specifically off of mine. I hereby inform you that you do not have permission to put on atom of anything on my property, and that I have a habit of standing my ground and fetishizing my second amendment rights.

    Have a nice day,

    Chad

    1. I have a habit of standing my ground and fetishizing my second amendment rights.

      Are you going to start shooting CO2? How does that work?

      Do you realize it’s a colorless, tasteless gas that currently makes up about 0.04% of air?

      1. No, I cut the CO2 off at the source.

        Btw, I have a PhD in chemistry. I can assure you I know more than you would ever care to know about CO2.

        1. I cut the CO2 off at the source.

          Why haven’t you stopped breathing?

        2. “Btw, I have a PhD in chemistry.”

          Oh wow.

  29. Net zero carbon tax, far better than this command and control methodology.

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  31. Here’s a far better way: it heals the land while it puts carbon back into the soil (and no government action needed): http://www.ted.com/talks/allan…..hange.html

    If you want to encourage it, patronize your local farmer who uses rotational grazing/mob herding/holistic management. The meat tastes far better and is far better for you.

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