Beware Liberals bearing energy legislation
No one in Congress bothered to read the more than 900 pages in the president's Stimulus hornswaggle. The result was a host of new powers granted Obama and the Congress over the economy that few would have dared vote for if the light of day had been shed on them.
Now comes an equally lengthy and even more insidious attack on free markets and free men. Henry Waxman's crowning achievement in his long career is going to be the energy bill that is supposed to save us from global warming, make us independent of foreign oil, and generally lead America to a promised land of green energy supplies.
And if it places enormous powers in the hands of Congress and the executive to regulate our lives, so much the better.
Once again, no one - in the press anyway - wants to read the darn thing. But the Washington Post editors have read it. And what they've discovered should send a shiver down the spine of freedom loving Americans everywhere:
THE RUNNING joke in Washington is that nobody has read the 900-plus-page energy bill sponsored by Reps. Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.) and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), which the House will consider in coming weeks. What you hear from its backers is that its cap-and-trade provisions would create a market-based program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions -- which should mean that a simple, systemwide incentive encourages polluters to make the easiest reductions in greenhouse gases first, keeping the costs of fighting global warming to a minimum. In fact, the bill also contains regulations on everything from light bulb standards to the specs on hot tubs, and it will reshape America's economy in dozens of ways that many don't realize.
Here is just one: The bill would give the federal government power over local building codes. It requires that by 2012 codes must require that new buildings be 30 percent more efficient than they would have been under current regulations. By 2016, that figure rises to 50 percent, with increases scheduled for years after that. With those targets in mind, the bill expects organizations that develop model codes for states and localities to fill in the details, creating a national code. If they don't, the bill commands the Energy Department to draft a national code itself.
Localists should be screaming bloody murder about this. A national building code? Who do these jamokes think they are?
They think they're in charge and can do whatever they darn well please, that's who.
States would be forced to adopt the code or face losing federal funds. The bill also gives the Energy Department power to:
...enforce its code itself. Among other things, the policy would demonstrate the new leverage of allocation of allowances as a sort of carbon currency -- leverage this bill would be giving to Congress to direct state behavior.
Will we continue to sleepwalk our way toward the destruction of much of what this country was founded on; strong state governments, individual rights, and local control? As long as nobody is reading what legislation Congress is passing, yes.
Hat Tip: Ed Lasky