No greater illustration of the yawning divide in the United States that exists over so-called climate change could be seen than the testimony before Congress between two very different environmentalists-Al Gore and Newt Gingrich.
The subject was a proposed “cap and trade” system, advocated by President Barack Obama, being pushed through the Congress by Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. To hear former Vice President Al Gore speak, the future of the planet depends on cap and trade being passed.
Al Gore called passage of cap and trade a “moral imperative.” And, according to AFP, Gore suggested, “the bill was as important as the civil rights legislation passed by Congress in the 1960s giving African-Americans the right to vote, and the Marshall Plan of the late 1940s for rebuilding Europe after World War II.”
Former Speaker Newt Gingrich, on the other hand, was somewhat sceptical. “This bill is an energy tax,” Gingrich said. “An energy tax punishes senior citizens, it punishes rural Americans, if you use electricity it punishes you. This bill will increase your cost of living and may kill your job.”
Chairman Henry Waxman accused Gingrich of trying to scare people. But then, cap and trade is pretty scary, as Congressman John Dingall, a Democrat, suggested. Dingall not only agreed that cap and trade is a big tax on energy, but would not work without the participation of other countries, such as China.
Cap and trade would also the kind of tax that Democrats pretend to oppose, one that takes from the working class and gives to the wealthy. According to a recent article in US News:
“The cap-and-trade system being touted on Capitol Hill would create a multibillion-dollar playground that would, once again, create a group of wealthy traders benefiting at the expense of millions of average families-middle to low-income households that would end up paying more for food, energy, and almost everything else they buy.”
The Weekly Standard reports that an MIT study suggests that cap and trade would cost the average American household $3900 a year in added energy costs.
The European experience in cap and trade suggests that it causes not only a huge economic burden on consumers, but creates an atmosphere of corruption and back room dealing as governments and business try to game the system. And cap and trade simply does not lower greenhouse gas emissions.
Ironically cap and trade looks like it is a solution in search of a problem. The Earth has actually been undergoing a cooling trend since 1998. Cap and trade looks like an economically disastrous policy that would cause corruption in order to not fix a problem that really doesn’t exist anyway. Pretty good for government work.
Sources: Al Gore backs US climate change bill, AFP, April 24th, 2009
Gore pleads for unity on climate, despite divide, Dina Cappiello and H. Josef Hebert, AP, April 24th, 2009
(47) Next Bernie Madoff? Emissions Cap-and-Trade Aids the Corrupt, Hurts the Little Guy, William O’Keefe, US News and World Report, April 13th, 2009
Fuzzy Math, John McCormack, Weekly Standard, April 22nd, 2009
There IS a problem with global warming… it stopped in 1998, Bob Carter, The Telegraph, April 10th, 2006