Climate Change

Merry Christmas, Suckers

Just in time for Christmas, Washington has a gift for all of you feeling the joy and optimism of the season… a giant, economy killing, power grab by the EPA.  Rejoice!  Rejoice!  The polar bears will continue to thrive while Americans suffer record unemployment and poverty!

In a perfectly timed press release, the EPA announced their intention to begin limiting emissions from coal-fired power plants to combat so-called climate change late last night.   While most people aren’t going to pay much attention to this story, it’s going to have significant affects for all of us.  Almost half of the electricity generated in this country comes from coal-fired power plants, so even if your personal power bill doesn’t see an immediate and significant increase, you can certainly expect the price of many of your “Made in the USA” products to increase substantially.  Until the exact provisions are released to the public, however, we can only speculate how much this massive power grab is going to cost each of us, but know that it is going to cost you.

Obviously, if these regulations are adopted, they certainly aren’t something that will aid our economic recovery, to say the least.  It is going to be sadly interesting, however, to see how detrimental these new regulations will be to the economic recovery in specific regions of the country.  For example, why would a company that is building a new factory ever consider an area where the cost of electricity has been artificially and unnecessarily inflated by the geniuses in Washington?

Today in Liberty: White House wanted Geithner to lie on Sunday shows, Boehner won’t arrest Lerner

“Increasing the minimum wage is political pandering, pure and simple. It does nothing to increase economic growth, which would create millions of jobs and lead to higher wages for everybody. The government shouldn’t set the price of labor, the free market should. It’s sad that some would rather play politics instead of making the case for pro-growth policies like tax reform and passing new trade deals with other nations.”Club for Growth President Chris Chocola

— White House wanted Geithner to lie about Social Security: In his new book, Stress Test: Reflections on Financial Crises, former Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner says that the White House wanted him to lie about Social Security’s impact on the federal deficit on Sunday talk shows. “I remember during one Roosevelt Room prep session before I appeared on the Sunday shows, I objected when Dan Pfeiffer wanted me to say Social Security didn’t contribute to the deficit. It wasn’t a main driver of our future deficits, but it did contribute,” Geithner writes. “Pfeiffer said the line was a ‘dog whistle’ to the left, a phrase I had never heard before. He had to explain that the phrase was code to the Democratic base, signaling that we intended to protect Social Security.” By the way, Social Security consumed 4.9 percent of the economy in 2013, slightly more than major government healthcare programs. Over the long-term, the Ponzi scheme will be outpaced by Medicare, but not by much.

Today in Liberty: Harry Reid is the new Nancy Pelosi, taxpayers subsidize state-owned businesses

Today in Liberty is a daily roundup of recent political news and other interesting stories presented with liberty-minded commentary. We frequently keep tabs on liberty-minded politicians and candidates in these updates. We also inject some humor on occasion. Click here to receive Today in Liberty every weekday morning via email.

— Harry Reid is the new hotness: The Senate majority leader is the villain in this year’s mid-term election, in case you haven’t already noticed, and he’s one that can be used in both House and Senate races. “A GOP strategist said Pelosi is still No. 2 on the list of liberal villains that scare conservative donors into action, after President Obama. But others say Reid has become a more compelling bogeyman,” The Hill explains. “The main reason? Pelosi no longer runs the House after the GOP reclaimed the lower chamber in 2010. Republicans have been unable to strip Reid of his majority leader title, but they think this will be the year they do that.”

— Al Gore is still around: And he’s stull super serial about climate change. After three  pretentious opening paragraphs, Politico Magazine catches us up on what former Vice President Al Gore is doing these days and his frustrations with the lack of action on climate change. Basically, big money and the Koch brothers are blamed. Oh, and when asked if he’ll run for president again, Gore said this: “I am a recovering politician. And the longer I avoid a relapse the more confidence that I will not succumb to the temptation to run yet again. But I’m a recovering politician. I’ll just leave it at that.”

Washington Post blasts Obama administration’s Keystone XL delay

The Washington Post is tired of President Obama’s “foot-dragging” on the latest delay of the Keystone XL oil pipeline. The paper’s editorial board, which has expressed support for the pipeline in previous missives, blasted the administration yesterday:

Harry Reid told us that “shadowy billionaires” are trying to buy America…

And he was right! Well, sort of. It’s not Charles and David Koch, the libertarian brothers who’ve been the target of vicious attacks by Harry Reid (D-NV). But rather, it’s Tom Steyer, a billionaire and radical environmentalist.

Steyer, who has met with Reid and other Democrats, has pledged $100 million to make climate change a big issue in the 2014 mid-term election. At the heart of the environmentalist’s personal campaign is his rabid opposition to the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

When the State Department announced last week that it would delay a decision on the oil pipeline, the latest example of this administration putting party over policy, Steyer came out as a big winner.

The State Department recently concluded that Keystone XL would have little impact on the environment, also noting that alternatives would result in higher carbon emissions, making Steyer’s objection to the pipeline look petty and paranoid.

It also makes President Obama and Democrats look exceedingly hypocritical because, after all their attacks on the Koch brothers, Steyer has successfully managed to buy a presidency, but it’s a Democrat. That’s a fact that National Review’s Tom Rogan pointed out yesterday on Fox and Friends.

Today in Liberty: Greenwald teases more NSA revelations, just half of Georgia’s Obamacare signups have paid

“[I]f you want to be adversarial to those who wield power, you have to expect that those who wield power aren’t going to like what you’re doing very much.”Glenn Greenwald

— Expect more NSA revelations: In an appearance on CNN’s State of the Union, Glenn Greenwald said that we can expect more disclosures about the NSA in a new book due out next month. “There are stories that I felt from the beginning really needed the length of a book to be able to report and to do justice to,” Greenwald said, “so there’s new documents, there’s new revelations in the book that I think will help inform the debate even further.” The book, No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State, is slated for a May 14 release.

Jimmy Carter wants Obama to reject Keystone XL

Jimmy Carter

The man who oversaw an energy crisis has come out strongly against the Keystone XL pipeline. In a letter with other Nobel laureates, former President Jimmy Carter urged President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry to reject the pipeline, claiming that allowing the project to move forward would worsen climate change:

“You stand on the brink of making a choice that will define your legacy on one of the greatest challenges humanity has ever faced – climate change,” Carter and the others wrote in an open letter to President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry. 
[…]
Carter and the other Nobel Prize winners suggest to Obama that rejecting the $5.4 billion project would help the environment.

“You know as well as us the power of precedence that this would set,” states the letter, published in Politico. “This leadership by example would usher in a new era where climate change and pollution is given the urgent attention and focus it deserves in a world where the climate crisis is already a daily struggle for so many.”

Rejecting Keystone XL “would signal a new course for the world’s largest economy,” added the group of Nobel laureates, which includes South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu and landmine activist Jody Williams.

Americans not concerned about climate change

#Up4Climate

Like a Baptist preacher delivering a “hellfire and brimstone” sermon from the pulpit, a number of Senate Democrats pulled an all-nighter on Monday into the wee hours of Tuesday, pushing alarmist climate change rhetoric from the chamber floor.

The effort is, apparently, the first of many by these Senate Democrats to raise awareness to climate change, hoping to put in the issue back on the public’s radar and, by extension, place pressure on Congress to take action on global warming.

The planned stunt hasn’t received great deal of attention. The media did cover it, but other stories since Monday evening have dominated the news cycle. In short, the 15-hour sermon from Senate Democrats fell flat.

When it comes down to it, Americans are much more worried about the economy, federal spending, and healthcare, according to a new survey from Gallup. Climate change ranks near the bottom on the list of issues with which the public is concerned.

Today in Liberty: Some Dems missing from “talkathon,” election day in FL-13

“The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren’t enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws.” — Ayn Rand

— Oh, Fox News, STAAAAAHP: Another morning, another anti-Edward Snowden rant on Fox and Friends. “Edward Snowden is a terrible person, the worst in the world. Here’s a clip of Charles Krauthammer agreeing with me.” Yeah, there are some legit complaints about Snowden, like his seeking asylum from Russia, not exactly a bastion of liberty, but the guy tried to handle things the right way by taking his concerns about the NSA’s surveillance programs to his superiors. They didn’t listen, so he went to the media. In our minds, Snowden is more a hero than anything else for exposing programs that ignore the protections guaranteed in the Fourth Amendment. We also believe that he’s raised some other excellent points about the federal government wasting its resources. But neo-cons are gonna neo-con, and don’t you dare ever question them.

Senate Democrats’ “talkathon” more about cronyism than climate change

Senate Democrats will begin an all-night “talkathon” later today and into Tuesday morning to try to raise congressional awareness to climate change, what USA Today describes as the first of many steps to put the issue on the radar before the 2014 mid-term election.

This charade really is more of a nod to big Democratic Party donors who would benefit from policies aimed at combating climate change, as Byron York explains. In short, it’s is another example of cronyism:

 


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