Friday, June 26, 2009
So, What's Going To Replace The Democratic Party?
While I was un-carbon-producing (except for my breathing), it was passed. See David's Chicago-Boyz post.
I don't think the average person realizes that much of our current power plant dates from decades ago, that nuclear plants are going to going off line in about a decade due to age, and that we are apparently signing on to something that will raise the basic cost of living in a very substantial way, without actually having any alternatives.
We are at the point when this will come home quite quickly. The current bill has a ridiculous goal of cutting US per capita carbon dioxide emissions back to the 1700s. Needless to say, that will never come to pass. And most of the current bill's provisions are backloaded to later dates, but even the renewable energy mandates will raise fuel costs significantly within 5-6 years.
At some point, the peasants will revolt. It is almost as if this bill was a conspiracy of California Democrats who feel the need to bankrupt the rest of this country so that California will have an equal chance at funding, or something like that.
Volokh's Jim Lindgren has written several very good posts on this bill - this one, from months ago, reviews the ridiculous goal of the bill. This post from today reviews the central problem related to trade.
It's the inane nature of this bill that astounds me. We just cannot do it. Growing the food necessary to feed even our own population would emit more carbon than the final goals in the bill, even if every household in the USA was burning candles for light and had returned to the lifestyle that Paul Ehrlich used to recommend.
Okay, so in pursuit of a goal that's nonsensical, for a problem that is international and that will not be addressed internationally (India and China, for example, are refusing to starve their people to death), we adopt legislation that either sets up an iron wall of tariffs or drives half the nation into poverty in about 15 years. This is the most bizarre thing I have ever seen in my lifetime.
Let's hope it can be stopped in the Senate. Even if it is, our nation has lost something here, and that something is the principal legislative body's grasp on reality. It is as if the House of Representatives suddenly passed a vote to reduce gravity by 10 percent in order to lessen the costs of obesity to putatively cut Medicare costs in the future. Truly amazing.
I strongly recommend reviewing the figures in this old WSJ piece on the goal and then at least look at the abstract on crop emissions. The full article will cost you ten bucks.
I haven't, btw, reviewed the revised version. But some earlier work I did during the election suggested that anything expensive enough to reduce US carbon emissions by 10% would also cut GDP by about 12% (rolling time frame 3 years after initiative introduction).
I'm completely stunned.
I feel sorry for ordinary Americans. The Democrats, in pursuit of their belief that humans are terrible earth destroying Gaia haters who need to be punished, will inflict untold hardship on Americans.
Just watch California in the next year to see what every state will soon be experiencing.
But it's not. They fully intend to install a system of bureaucratic mandarins to control the very details of our lives.
I'm also not so optimistic that we can easily rid ourselves of this, once it's done. Once government gets this kind of administrative power to reward and punish on a micro-level, they will be extremely difficult to get rid of.
A 300 page amendment to the main bill was posted in the wee hours of this morning, so the suckers did not even know the details of the bill on which they were voting.
It is hubris on a grand scale.
I assume the ash from the wood stoves people will use to heat their homes will worsen air quality, too.
God help us all.
Thanks for the link.
My impression is that most politicians aren't paying attention to the basics.
65 + 45 = 110. In 2010, the Medicare demographic impact hits. By 2013-14, US finances will be a total disaster.
They are relying upon massive energy taxation to balance the books. In Europe, this has produced very low growth rates outside bubble territory.
Due to demographics, our baseline growth rate is probably around 1.9%.
Add energy taxes - that goes to less than the rate of population growth - under 1%.
GDP growth under the rate of population growth in a welfare economy = recession.
They understand it's going to cause another Depression. But they've got a romantic ideal of what the Great Depression was all about (jumbled up with WWII rationing), imparted by way of Steinbeck novels and Howard Zinn histories. They really couldn't care less whether it actually helps the environment or not. This is reactionary romanticism at its worst, placed in service of power-mad politicians.
This is going to require some serious pain before it burns itself out.
Ave. Ave Imperator, fillintheblank.
That's the end state of failing republics.
You are quite perceptive in pointing out the effect Cap'n Trade would have on investment in new generating capacity. We need lots of new generating capacity in the next 5 years or so, even with the recession. Even if the actual taxes don't kick in for years, the price increases will begin very quickly due to the low productivity of new "alternative" generating infrastructure.
The only bright side I can discern is that a cap-and-trade scheme could be cancelled much more easily than, say, national health care. New Zealand elected a conservative government last year and its first act was to repeal the recently-passed cap-and-trade legislation.
If some version of national health care gets passed, though, watch out. It'll go away when the public schools are abolished.
You have a way with words!
I'm trying desperately to believe in the American way.
This nation can't afford to be a one-party state. I am certain that in the future when the impact of various things becomes clearer the reaction of a bunch of current politicians will be to turn anger toward outside entities.
We must have parties that are trying to craft workable policies, rather than alibis.
It'll go away when the public schools are abolished.
I wonder how long we actually have to wait for that? I think that anyone (including myself) with the desire to reform the public school system has basically given up by now. Schools are rapidly turning into an indefensible failure. Most of the stuff that's being churned out now by Congress is on the short-list for failure as well, and probably more quickly than we expect given self-reinforcing dynamic effects. What is it, five years? Ten years? Two years?
The Northeastern elite that has run the country since the Civil War is melting down before our eyes. Folks are going to get in a mood to just burn down the house and be done with it. The question, as "Who Struck John" alludes to, is what we'll rebuild in its place.
Except that it probably doesn't even exist.
EPA May Have Suppressed Report Skeptical Of Global Warming.
Fuck you Nancy!
Although I have not waded through the entire current edition of the bill just passed in the house, I read enough of it to realize that it is a money tree if you are a Congress Critter.
I therefore expect similar legislation to be passed in the Senate and for something along these lines to be signed into law by President Obama.
Facts have as little to do with this legislation as they have to do with Isakson's proposal to pay people 15K to buy a house.