By Robert Wallace
This is a bill that no one has read. It’s a bill that–no matter how politicians squabble about the specific numbers–will significantly damage our economy right when we most need our strength to recover from this recession. Only this morning, Democrat darling and Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine (a big supporter of cap-and-trade) responded to a caller on the local AM radio station who wanted to know if Kaine would be willing to fight for a state-wide cap-and-trade plan if the federal effort failed. No, said the Governor, he wouldn’t. Why not? Because if Virginia passed cap-and-trade and the rest of the country didn’t, we’d be at a serious economic disadvantage. Jobs would be lost, he said, and we would not be able to attract new companies and investment.
Of course, the exact same logic applies on an international level. If the United States passes cap-and-trade and the rest of the world doesn’t, we will be at a significant economic disadvantage. I’ve heard some Democrats argue that we need to pass it so that we will be able to assume a leadership role in international talks. Anyone that thinks that India, China, Russia, and other major economies are going to shoot themselves in the foot just because we did it first probably also thought Obama’s Cairo speech would lead to democratic advances in Iran and warm Iranian-American foreign relationships. Ha ha. The joke, apparently, is on all of us.
But it gets worse. Not only are repressive and autocratic regimes–Russia and China–going to laugh while America enters the race with our self-inflicted economic damage, but even Western nations are not going to be willing to follow us off the cliff, leaving America to look less like a courageous leader, and more like an anti-social lemming.
The reason for this is that the “scientific consensus” on global warming–which was always a political facade rather than a scientific reality–is crumbling. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd of Australia was elected largely based on promises to pass global warming related legislation, but that bill is set to languish in the Australian legislature due to lack of support.
Australian Senator Steve Fielding decided to do his homework before casting his vote. He traveled to America and asked the Obama administration to provide scientific evidence to reassure him that man-caused global warming is real, and that cap-and-trade type bills will have a real effect. He received no assurances. He went back to Australia and voted against the bill because “he would not risk job losses on ‘unconvincing green science.’”
As Kimberly Strassel details in her piece for The Wall Street Journal, Mr. Fielding is not a lone exception but just part of a resurgent tide of criticism against the global warming hysteria. All across the globe, a slew of scientists are standing up to intense political and professional pressure to conform to instead state the simple fact: global warming is a theory full of holes. The temperature has not risen globally since 2001.
All of this means that no Democrat Representative in their right mind would gamble their future voting for a bill based on a theory that is going downhill in relevance and credibility. However, the folks who voted for HR 2454 were not in their right minds. Instead, this is what they were thinking:
Obama is our hope for change. He has plunged this country trillions of dollars in debt on a huge gamble that he can solve the recession and reform our country at the same time. Already the numbers don’t look good. But if Obama fails, we’re all screwed.
If, on the other hand, we can keep the dream of hope for change alive a little longer maybe, just maybe, a miracle will come along.
That’s it. That’s all there is to it. Wishful thinking.
No miracle is going to come along. The economy is going to continue to suffer, global warming skepticism will increase, and Obama’s poll numbers will continue to inch down. The only thing going up around here is the federal debt.
Right now, though, the Democratic Party wagon is hitched to Obama’s star. A defeat for this bill would have severely damaged his credibility and image as a savior, and all Obama has is image. Without the image, the juggernaut evaporates and then the Democrats are left as the majority party presiding over the Great Depression 2.0 — stupid reactionary policies and all.
Certainly go down with a whimper now, hope for a miracle and probably go down in flames later. Tough call, right?
All I know right now is that, no matter how much I can understand the logic, nothing earns them any leeway in my eyes. They have betrayed this country and their constituents for the sake of their own short-term gain. This is the same kind of near-sighted greed that brought us Enron and AIG, but I can tell you right now that in my view of small government no elected representative in the country is too big to fail.
It’s time for these clowns–especially the eight Republican turncoats–to learn that there will be a reckoning for this behavior, and it’s time for us to provide that reckoning.
I can hardly wait for 2010.
Robert Wallace has been writing for America’s Right since December 2008, and lives in Virginia with his wife and two children.