Friday, June 26, 2009

Energy Bill - House Debate (June 26, 2009)

Well, I caught a couple hours of the debate and as a piece of political theatre, at times it became downright funny - esp. the long Republican inability to locate the "official copy of the bill".

Unfortunately, like most of these floor debates, one hears little or nothing about the contents of the bill itself, simply the consequences of its enactment. And those consequences can be predicted by who is supporting/opposing. Republicans, as usual, assert that it amounts to a huge tax on every American, that global climate change doesn't exist, that this bill won't do anything for our energy situation, and will cost millions of jobs at a time we can't afford to lose even one.

The Democrats defend it as the first step in energy independence and a job creator.

The only thing notable, and typical of Democrats, is that the method of controlling carbon emissions (cap-and-trade) was chosen over a tax on carbon emissions in order to get bi-partisan support - because cap-and-trade is a "free market" solution. I suspect that, as with the stimulus, there won't be a single Republican vote for it. * What is frustrating about this is that, from what I've read, the Republicans are probably right when they say that it won't work and that the system will be gamed.

So what we have here is a "Conservative" solution that won't work being passed by Democrats in the name of preserving the Conservatives' sacred free market strategy as the solution to all problems - that won't get a single Conservative vote.

With luck, I'll be dead before the planet has gone to hell, but what makes me especially angry is that the neanderthal politicians who have been denying climate change for the past 30 years will also be dead so they won't be around for their grandchildren and great-grandhildren to spit in their faces for putting their petty political philosophies and short term profits over the life of the planet.

*Update: I was wrong. 8 Republicans voted for the bill. 44 Democrats voted against it. The vote was very close.

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