Saturday, June 27, 2009

Discussion after House Passage of H.R. 2454

Following yesterday's passage of H.R. 2454 in the House of Representatives, there was naturally some discussion by people who were following the legislation. Tangent: Please contact your Senators and let them know you oppose the passage of any Senate version of H.R. 2454.

One disturbing comment I saw was this one:

"Predictably, I am in favor of it. Bring on the truth in pricing. If I'm doing or buying something that is particularly bad for the earth, I might as well know it, and decide if it is worth my money and my kid's future. (And yes, I know there are many ways the big G is messing with our children's futures.) But then, I saw this coming years ago and started shrinking our family 'footprint' well in advance of government compulsion, so maybe I am just being annoyingly smug. Sorry."

Many environmental activists may feel the same way today, so let me take a moment to say what I feel is wrong with it.

"Bring on the truth in pricing."

What truth? My understanding of this comment is that additional cost in energy and products is warranted. Why? They already reflect current costs of energy creation, salaries of those involved, etc. If the truth is the cost to the environment of carbon dioxide production, then I dispute the term truth. There is plenty of room for doubt about carbon dioxide's effect on the environment and the theory (yes, theory, not fact) of anthropogenic global warming. Here are just a few posts on this blog on the subject, each referencing solid outside sources:

Say No to Cap and Trade. Oppose H.R. 2454

California's Going to Tax Carbon Dioxide Emissions: A Cautionary Tale

The End of Global Warming (inaccurate data throws the entire theory into doubt)

Al Gore, the face of Global Warming doesn't act like he believes his own theory

Then again, fewer and fewer people do believe in anthropogenic global warming

Nevertheless, despite much inquiry into the credibility of the theory and his own actions, Gore still pushes global warming legislation before congress

This despite the fact that arctic ice doesn't really seem to be disappearing as originally reported

That other planets were behaving similarly to Earth (pointing to an extraplanatary cause, meaning any climate change was not likely anthropogenic)

And that Earth now seems to be cooling, or at the very least, temperatures have been flat since 2001. This is all cited in the resources linked in the various posts linked above.

So, it's clear the global climate change bill isn't about truth. It's about a very questionable theory.

That means there's a huge problem with forcing this policy on everyone. Because the science is not settled, the belief in anthropogenic global warming is real is just a belief. Many scientists have characterized it as a religious belief. It is not fair, nor even Constitutional, to force anyone's belief on anyone else by legislation.

There's also the matter of a legislative instead of a market-based solution. If the commenter would like to pay more to offset her carbon footprint, she is free to do so. Most utility companies offer the option to pay a bit more for the delivery of green energy. Entire lines of products are devoted to environmentally friendly options that usually cost a bit more. As demand for such goods and energy increases, they will become more prevalent in the marketplace. That's the American solution, rather than the authoritarian socialist solution passed by the House of Representatives yesterday. The market solution is in keeping with the Constitution and the founding principles of our nation. Better yet, no one's free will or rights are abridged.

The most basic concept of the founding of America is liberty. Key to that concept is that your rights extend precisely to the point where they infringe upon mine, and there they stop! Naturally, the opposite is also true. My rights end when they infringe upon yours.

Finally, there's the matter of being in favor of this bill. How could anyone possibly be? No one had time to read the over 1200 pages of bill, let alone the over 300 pages of amendment added at 3 AM the day of the vote. We don't know what's in there, and that may well be the scariest part. A vote should never take place unless the legislature and the people have had a time to read and consider what's being voted on.

As an aside, the poster was right; her smugness doesn't help her cause, nor does her sense of moral superiority give her any special right to force her beliefs on me, at a cost my family can't afford.


Mark said...

Not only was it not read, it was not written. That is, the amendments changes were not incorporated into the final bill before it passed. Thus, no copy of the actual final bill exists.

Andrew said...

I had a delightful day yesterday faxing representatives. 6 of the 8 "Republican" reps received faxes. The other two have their faxes shut down, or their constituents are already hitting them so hard I couldn't get through.

I also faxed both Boxer and Feinstein, urging them to vote no on any senate version of H.R. 2454 or any similar legislation. I don't know if it will do any good, but I mentioned the fact that similar measures have raised Spain's unemployment rate to 18%, which is something California can't afford.

I figure faxes are harder to ignore than e-mails, but I'm not wasting postage or time on mailing a letter.