As President Obama kicks off his “American Jobs Act” tour, the tires of his million-dollar bus will crunch across the bones of 500 jobs killed by his Environmental Protection Agency just today. The jobs come from Luminant, an energy company (real energy, not the “green” kind) that just happens to be based in Texas. Hmmm.
A press release from the company explains why they had to close facilities and eliminate jobs:
In employee meetings today across its Texas operations, Luminant leadership announced the need to close facilities to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency’s Cross-State Air Pollution Rule, which will cause the loss of approximately 500 jobs.
The rule, which the EPA released earlier this summer, requires Texas power generators to make dramatic reductions in emissions beginning January 1, 2012. While Luminant is making preparations to meet the rule’s compliance deadline, this morning it also filed a legal challenge in an effort to protect facilities and employees, and to minimize the harm this rule will cause to electric reliability in Texas.
To meet the rule’s unrealistic deadline and requirements, Luminant reluctantly must take the difficult steps of idling two generating units and ceasing mining Texas lignite at three mines. Luminant will also implement several other actions to reduce emissions, including making substantial investments in its facilities.
These guys must be ozone-depleting, Gaia-shredding madmen, right? No, according to the press release, they’ve “achieved a 21 percent reduction in SO2 emissions, while at the same time increasing generation by 13 percent.”
There you have Obamanomics in a nutshell: over $500 million in compulsory taxpayer support for Solyndra, a spectacular failure whose primary product was Obama photo ops, while the EPA executes 500 good jobs in Texas. This is the kind of “uncertainty” that got us to Day Zero, the day Barack Obama made post-war history by achieving zero net job growth. It has nothing to do with fear of unknown market conditions, which can be influenced in real time by corporate behavior. It has everything to do with the whimsical notions of unaccountable bureaucracies, which can be influenced only through unpredictable politics, months and years after they have beaten thousands of jobs to death.
Here’s the best part: if Obama gets his way, the federal government will be paying a $4000 bounty to employers if they pass over the Luminant personnel who lost their jobs today, and hire people who have been unemployed for six months or longer instead. Part of that bounty will be financed with the taxes deducted from the Luminant workers’ final paychecks. The Democrat Party calls that “fairness.”