Over the past 13 days, over 300,000 Americans have signed a petition calling on their government to act immediately to ease high gas prices. These concerned Americans have sent a simple, powerful message to Congress:
My message today is aimed directly at the nearly one-third of a million Americans who have joined this campaign:
Instead of acting to lower gas prices, your representatives in the Senate began debate yesterday on a measure that will increase gas prices.
Instead of heeding your voice, Congress is acting in defiance of it.
Instead of giving you relief from high gas prices, your elected representatives are debating how to give even more handouts to lobbyists and special interests.
ACTION: Call your Senators TODAY and urge them to vote NO on the Boxer-Warner-Lieberman Green Pork Bill
Boxer-Warner-Lieberman will raise gas prices and create a massive special-interest-favoring, lobbyist-controlled, political pork dispensing machine dressed up as environmentalism.
“Meals on Wheels” Charities are Losing Volunteer Drivers to High Gas Prices
While some members of Congress are busy cooking up new ways to reward their political supporters, working Americans are suffering.
- A small appliance repair businessman in Delhi, New York is threatened with going out of business because of the miles he has to log in his car.
- Independent truck drivers in Illinois are working just to cover their costs, one breakdown away from losing their routes.
- A church in Rogers, Arkansas is seeing less in the offering plate because “all the giving is going in the gas tank.”
- Police officers in Tulsa, Oklahoma are forced to patrol their beats on bicycles.
- A “meals on wheels” charity in Amarillo, Texas is losing volunteers willing to drive meals to those who need them.
- Families across America give up vacations, give up eating out, give up entertainment and night school – even give up meals – because of the high price of gasoline.
These are real stories of real Americans whose lives are being disrupted by high gas prices. Congress: Are you listening?
“The most extensive government reorganization of the American economy since the 1930s”
I’ve long maintained that there are two ways to protect the environment: There is the old-style, command and control, government regulation and litigation approach. Or there is the new way which uses technology, innovation and incentives to protect our environment.
Of these two approaches, the Boxer-Warner-Lieberman bill is definitely of the old school. The Wall Street Journal calls it “the most extensive government reorganization of the American economy since the 1930s.”
The bill aims to reduce carbon emissions into the atmosphere by 66% in 2050. To do this, it would have government set a limit on overall carbon emissions and issue “allowances” to businesses that specify how much carbon they produce.
Like Pork Barrel Politics? Wait Until You See Energy Pork Barrel Politics
And here’s where we get into the Washington-style pork barrel politics. Half of these “allowances” will be auctioned off to businesses – a massive, up front tax that is expected to cost $3.32 trillion. Businesses will be forced to pass these indirect taxes along to consumers, of course, while Washington politicians decide which special interests will get a piece of the new $3.32 trillion revenue out of the politicians’ gigantic new Green Piggybank.
Boxer-Warner-Lieberman is riddled with earmarks, both to redistribute new tax revenues to politically favored groups (for example, there is $136 billion earmarked for energy efficiency block grants to local governments) and for buying off industries that might otherwise put their armies of lobbyists to work to defeat the bill.
Bottom line: If you liked the pork and political-favor-ridden Farm Bill and Transportation bills, you’re going to love the Boxer-Warner-Lieberman green pork bill.
Gas Prices Almost Double, Electricity Costs Up 44% Under Boxer-Warner-Lieberman
But most importantly, the cost of the new taxes imposed on businesses under Boxer-Warner-Lieberman will be passed on to the American people in the form of higher gas prices. How much higher?
The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) estimates that Boxer-Warner-Lieberman will increase the cost of a gallon of gas by as much as $3.25 by 2030.
Even the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that the bill will increase the cost of gas.
What’s more, the EPA also estimates that Boxer-Warner-Lieberman will increase electricity prices by 44% by 2030.
See this Heritage Foundation produced chart for how far gas prices will rise under Boxer-Warner-Lieberman in your state.
And see this chart for estimated job losses in your state under the bill.
Too Much Pain, Too Little Gain. Whatever Happened to American Ingenuity?
Beyond energy pork barrel politics, the premise behind Boxer-Warner-Leiberman is to punish people into the future; to impose such painful costs that businesses and consumers will change their behavior.
But when we decided we wanted transcontinental railroads, we didn’t start by raising the tax on stage coaches. We started by setting up incentives, both land and money, to encourage companies to build railroads.
Increasing the pain level isn’t the way to go. Increasing the reward level for innovation and science and technology is.
Can Geoengineering Address Concerns About Global Warming?
One of the most intriguing and promising areas of scientific innovation today are methodologies to address concerns about global warming by something called geoengineering.
We need to know more about it, but the idea behind geoengineering is to release fine particles in or above the stratosphere that would then block a small fraction of the sunlight and thus reduce atmospheric temperature.
In other words, this is one method that holds the promise of addressing any threat from global warming at a fraction of the cost. Instead of imposing an estimated $1 trillion cost on the economy by Boxer-Warner-Lieberman, geoengineering holds forth the promise of addressing global warming concerns for just a few billion dollars a year. Instead of penalizing ordinary Americans, we would have an option to address global warming by rewarding scientific innovation.
My colleagues at the American Enterprise Institute are taking a closer look at geoengineering, and we should too.
With gas prices already at record highs, the last thing America needs is government regulation that will make gas prices higher, make Americans poorer, and make special interests even richer.
We need innovation, not regulation. We need motivating incentives, not punishing pain.
Our message should be: Bring on the American Ingenuity. Stop the green pig.
Let your Senator know today.
P.S. — Last year, you were instrumental in helping to establish a new patriotic tradition on the anniversary of D-Day. Thanks to your phone calls and emails, President Franklin Roosevelt’s D-Day prayer to the nation was heard on over 1500 radio stations around the country on the 63rd anniversary of the Normandy invasion.
The 64th anniversary of D-Day is coming up this week, on Friday, June 6. Call and email your local radio station and ask that they replay Roosevelt’s prayer, which confronted evil with faith and united the nation at a time of its greatest testing.
“In this poignant hour, I ask you to join with me in prayer,” the prayer begins. “Almighty God: Our sons, pride of our nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor, a struggle to preserve our Republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity.”
Call today to help remind your fellow Americans of the faith in God and country that once united us, and can unite us again.
And if you have a blog or website, consider embedding this video on your site Friday.
P.P.S. — I will be participating in a Virtual Energy Forum at 11am ET on June 10th. Anyone with internet access can watch the event live and participate. For details, click here.