Thomas Sowell wrote yesterday of the effort to secretly re-introduce the ObamaCare “death panels” through regulation as an “end run around the Constitution.” Here’s another one, and it’s even bigger: a year after the Climagate scandal decisively exposed the fraud of global warming, and acting in the face of a new Republican House that does not look kindly on climate change flim-flams, the Obama Administration is preparing to enforce their ideology through EPA greenhouse gas regulations.
So much for the latest “hard pivot to jobs,” announced only five days ago by President Obama. These EPA regulations are guaranteed job-killers, dropping a huge new tax on every affected business… which will, ultimately, be every business that uses energy.
Yes, cap-and-trade is back again. It crawled out of the House of Representatives chewing on a couple billion dollars of fried pork, then collapsed and died of a coronary on the Senate floor… but it’s simply been retooled and forced on America as a set of regulations, due to take effect on January 2nd.
The latest vehicle for delivering this immortal tyranny is the Clean Air Act, which has been mutated by ten year’s worth of lawsuits into an open-ended warrant for the Environmental Protection Agency to give itself any powers it thinks it needs, any time it sees a problem it wants to address. Environmental activists persuaded it to declare “greenhouse gasses” a public health threat that required regulation. (You could hear the bureaucrats howling in pain as their arms were twisted, all the way from the lobby of the EPA offices.)
EPA regulations would technically require permits from any facility that emits more than 100 tons of greenhouse gas annually, but that would include virtually every school and hospital in the country, essentially bringing the economy of the United States to a screeching halt. Realizing it can’t go quite that far, the EPA “tailored” its regulations to hit only industrial facilities and power plants with extra equipment and permit costs. The next stage of the program, due to hit in 2012, could virtually wipe out coal-fired power plants. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, coal-fired plants currently provide forty-five percent of our electric power. Their output increased 8.4% last year, compared to only 0.4% for natural gas plants, which will be the only viable alternative under the crushing burden of greenhouse-gas regulations.
One of the largest consumers of coal-fired electricity is Texas, which rejected the additional costs the Administration plans to dump on them in the name of the global warming religion. The EPA responded by taking control of carbon emission rules away from the state. Texas Governor Rick Perry has vowed to fight back, condemning the regulations as “over-reaching by the federal government that will cripple his state’s economy,” as reported by Business Week. A statement from Perry’s office said “the EPA’s misguided plan paints a huge target on the backs of Texas agriculture and energy producers by implementing unnecessary, burdensome mandates on our state’s energy sector, threatening hundreds of thousands of Texas jobs, and imposing increased living costs on Texas families.”
The incoming Republican chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Fred Upton of Michigan, agrees with Perry’s criticism, calling the new EPA regulations “an unconstitutional power grab that will kill millions of jobs” in a Wall Street Journal editorial. He wants Congress to overturn the greenhouse gas regulations.
If Upton doesn’t have the political muscle to get the job done now, Americans concerned about their economic future, and weary of global-warming fatwas that destroy productive businesses while making people like Al Gore into billionaires, should make every effort to send them reinforcements in 2012. It’s imperative to hold a good old-fashioned inquisition, and purge global warming fanatics from every level of our government. When your state representatives come up for re-election, ask them a simple question: “Do you favor sacrificing American jobs and prosperity to battle the threat of man-made climate change?” If they answer “yes,” blow them away at the polls without mercy. Then you’ll see what a “hard pivot to jobs” looks like.