Blogs » Politcs Plus » Cap-and-Trade...Rest in Peace


When I heard header senate Majority Leader Harry Reid say that the Cap-and-Trade bill was officially dead; I had a moment of anger, sadness and disappointment, that the bill never even went to committee; much less to the floor for debate. This was another win for big oil and dirty coal. I have been saying for the over year that the watered down Cap-and Trade bill the house passed, would never make it through senate. I did want Harry Reid to put those that opposed it, on the record. I'm not a big proponent of Cap-and-Trade because I prefer the label, clean energy bill. I don't really care if you call it a Carbon Tax, Cap-and-Trade or Energy tax because I just want the results of reducing carbon emissions. I knew the votes weren't there because even liberal democrats like Senator Rockefeller of West Virginia and the newly appointed senator, Carte Goodwin of West Virginia said they would oppose the bill making it impossible to get these 60 votes needed for debate. I can't think of any democrat in the house or senate that is a global warming Denier; it seems the Republican Party has more than their fair share that deny the science.

Cap-and-Trade was originally a conservative republican idea; President George H.W. Bush used it effectively to regulate sulphur in combating acid rain. Someone in the conservative movement demonized it, so this is where we are. Cap-and-Trade was intended to be a free market idea because the market would decide what the cost of carbon vs. human health would be. The free market fundamentalist argued that it was against the Adam Smith's so- called" Invisible Hand Theory." This was a concept of a self regulating market. The cost is of human health is not in the formula of the Adam Smith theory on economics'.

The word "tax" is like kryptonite to a conservative, they cannot get beyond that word. They don't seem to mind "increased cost" because that would mean that big business would be making profits. Tom Friedman, columnist for the New York Times, recognized this and suggested that the democrats convince the GOP that we could use 1/3 of revenues of a carbon tax, for corporate tax cuts,1/3 for eliminating the payroll tax and 1/3 for renewable energy.

The big oil and dirty coal lobbyist want their politicians to convince their constituents that their utility bills will skyrocket if the democrats get their way. Those politicians will not mention that the world is going to start using green energy and they will more than likely produce the clean energy innovators and then we would have to pay them. It doesn't matter if we are one of the few nations that are still arguing about global warming; the rest of the nations are on board and will likely make us pay for it. i.e. Our competitors might refuse to use our machinery made by Caterpillar because of carbon emissions. That's already happening; in our benefit i.e. Association of American Railroads issued a press release stating that in 2009, freight trains across the country average 480 ton-miles per gallon. Since 1980, freight train fuel efficiency has increased by 104%...Our higher cost freight trains are in demand.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senator John Kerry have talked about introducing a scaled down version of a climate bill dealing with utility companies. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), has also promoted a utility-only carbon bill. This is promising because in I'm tired of kicking- the -can down the road. As I heard last night, the CIA, the Defense Department and even the Catholic Church stand behind a clean energy bill. As the pundit said last night, the Catholic church is centuries behind in dealing with their issues; yet they see the need for climate change legislation because it’s not that hard to grasp. Congress needs to be truthful; they need to say, yes initially it will increase your utility bill, but we will have vouchers for the elderly and the poor. It is necessary and it's one of those" Pay me now, or pay me later." Think of it this way , how much money will we save by not having to send our national treasure to the Middle East and not being willing customers of Petro dictators. These are the facts, we have 5% of the world's all reserves but we use 25% of the world's fossil fuels, our electric grid is over 100 years old and that's not even bringing up British Petroleum. We've known about this problem for 40 years and it's no secrete the GOP will not move on this ,when they increase their numbers; the time is now.