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Thursday, August 23, 2007

3. Save The Planet

In the 1980s as AIDS became known as the plague of the gay community, that same community blamed Ronald Reagan for inaction. If he had done something sooner, far fewer people would have died.

What exactly Reagan was supposed to have done facing a then unknown and previously unseen killer, I don’t know. But clearly, according to the Left, his alleged inaction was the reason for the devastating consequences of AIDS.

Now the Left has their current crisis. It’s called Global Warming. It makes every plague in history look like mere chest colds. According to the Left, it will destroy, devastate and kill untold millions of animals, humans, eco-systems and plants. It is the greatest looming disaster in history. It has already started and it is clearly our fault. If we change our energy use, the disaster will be averted. If we don’t – we are doomed.

So, how seriously is the Left taking this issue, I mean, besides flying around the world and talking? Nothing really. Are there serious bills in Congress, introduced by the new “green sensitive” Democratic leadership dealing with this impending disaster? No. Just talk – lots of talk and lots of money going to “research.”

Well, I don’t buy into Al Gore’s argument, but let’s say that I did. Let’s say I am the Speaker and have control of the House of Representatives. What bills would I introduce to reduce our “carbon footprint.” Here are the first seven:

1, Tax Credits (not deductions) for homeowners purchasing and installing energy producing and saving systems. This would include both solar and wind energy as well as other energy saving upgrades. Currently, homeowners are reluctant to install these expensive systems because the pay back period is 10 to 20 years. Through tax credits, let say for 90% of the purchase price spread over two years, this would make these systems affordable. As more and more systems are purchased the prices would drop as more competition enters the market to meet the demand of this exploding industry. Would tax revenues to the federal government also fall? Possibly, but these are dire times and maybe the government should tighten their belt a little. Isn’t that the least they can do to save our planet and to protect our children’s future?

These tax credits will be available to all tax payers, regardless of income. So, who would be most likely to take these tax credits? The middle and upper classes. This would no doubt create a conflict on the Left as the “rich” may pay fewer taxes, but then, isn’t saving the planet the main objective here?

2. Tax Credits for fuel efficient and hybrid cars. Much like the above example, the additional cost of the hybrid cars negates the savings they create in fuel efficiency. Bridge that gap with a similar tax credit and sales would soar. Although there is currently a tax deduction in place, it exempts higher income car buyers. Since they are often the car owners most likely to commute and most likely to buy large SUVs, don’t we want to do everything possible to encourage them to buy a more green friendly car?

3. Wind Farm Expansion. Throughout suitable regions such as the plains states and coastal regions, offer generous incentives to industry and power companies to create wind farms. This would include such areas as Cape Cod, in spite of protests from Senator Ted Kennedy. Yes, they are not attractive, but they, along with solar energy, are the cleanest fuel alternatives.

4. Solar Array Expansion. With so many regions in the South and Southwest bathing in sunshine so much of the year, these areas would seem perfect candidates for massive solar array systems. Again, tax incentives or outright grants to build and tie these systems into the power grid should quickly stimulate their construction.

5. Nuclear Power Plant Expansion. This suggestion may not fully please the green crowd, but the reality is that there is little or no carbon footprint. With nuclear pebble bed reactor technology, these plants are far safer than previous designs These reactors would also pave the way for hydrogen production as an alternative and cleaner burning fuel.

6. Elimination of Car Pool Lanes on Highways. As a resident of Southern California, I know all too well about cars sitting idle on freeways burning fuel and spewing carbon dioxide while the car pool lane sits empty. From my limited knowledge of queue theory, I would suspect that opening those lanes to all traffic would greatly increase the flow of traffic and reduce the amount of fuel burned and carbon dioxide emitted. There are those that would disagree with me, but this is a rather easy theory to test. Measure the amount of fuel purchased in Los Angeles and Orange Counties over a three month period. Make a serious effort to alert the public that for a comparable three month period that all carpool lanes will be open to all traffic. Measure fuel usage and traffic flow for both periods. The data will determine the correct path.

7. Ease Building and Environmental Impact Restrictions for Construction of Energy Saving Systems. These alternative energy systems are far too important to get bogged down in the current red tape and over-regulation. Obviously, nothing should be built or operated unsafely, but streamline the bureaucracy and get these systems on-line!

Although I disagree with Gore’s hypothesis, I do agree that reducing reliance on foreign oil and seeking cleaner fuel sources is an excellent goal. But instead of just talking about it, I’m willing to back either party in stimulating real change. In fact, I’m willing to back almost any logical proposal as long as it does not include such words as “new taxes” or “new government agency.”

But what legislation has been introduced by either party under any administration? The only serious example I can recall were tax credits under the Carter administration. These credits proved to be effective and stimulated the solar energy markets. What have Clinton, Gore, Pelosi and Kennedy done? Well, I don’t recall anything other than Pelosi suggesting we make the Capitol Building “greener.” Yes, that’s a bold step forward.

It’s difficult for me to believe that such a crisis actually exists when those who profess the crisis as genuine take no real action to avert it. Noah took the crisis seriously and built an ark. Gore, on the other hand, won’t even take his own pledge and reduce the amount of energy he consumes in his own mansion. Maybe with tax credits, even he will make his mansion more energy efficient.

The left claims that President Bush’s lack of sensitivity toward this looming disaster is proof that he is in bed with the oil companies, that they, not Bush pull the strings. Based on the Left’s inaction, aren’t they too in that same bed?

If Reagan is at fault for AIDS then the looming global warming disaster is clearly on the hands of the Left. All talk and no action.

1 comment:

Empty said...

This just in... Forget the tax credits! We need to decrease the Moose population!!

OSLO (AFP) - A grown moose belches out methane gas equivalent to 2,100 kilograms (4,630 pounds) of carbon dioxide a year, contributing to global warming, Norwegian researchers said Wednesday.

That is more than twice the amount of CO2 emitted on a round-trip flight across the Atlantic Ocean from Oslo to the Chilean capital Santiago, according to Scandinavian Airlines.