I guess the panic in an e-mail alert I received the other day wasn’t quite justified. I edited this a little bit since today’s events obviated the need for any links. The e-mail came from my friends at Freedom’s Watch (below the fold):
At $4 a gallon, Americans are hurting at the gas pump. Higher gas prices are affecting every part of our life. We’re paying more for food, milk, clothes, and cooling our homes. Even summer vacations are in jeopardy.
Yet the Senate is about to vote on a bill (S. 2191) that would make things worse by raising gas prices, increasing home energy bills, and slowing the economy, and we need your help to stop it.
Sponsors say their bill will reduce the greenhouse gases that cause climate change. They call their plan “cap and trade,” but it is really a huge hidden carbon tax on our economy that will have devastating consequences.
This bill could not come at a worse time. Last week General Motors announced it was closing four plants, putting nearly 5,000 Americans out of work. Thousands more in supporting industries will also lose their jobs.
Meanwhile, United Airlines announced it was slashing 1,600 jobs, idling older planes, and cutting routes – all because of skyrocketing gas prices.
Is your job next?
Incredibly, the bill before the Senate is estimated to raise the price of gasoline $1.10 a gallon, raise taxes, and increase your home energy bills.
This bill is so bad the Wall Street Journal called it “the largest income redistribution scheme since the income tax.” That’s saying something.
You’ll notice in the FOX News story that both the major party Presidential hopefuls are behind the bill, though:
The 48-36 vote fell short of a majority, but Democrats produced letters from six senators — including both presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain — saying they would have voted for the measure had they been there.
Something tells me that the Democrats only had one GOP letter; unfortunately it came from the party’s standardbearer. The other sick feeling I’m beginning to get is that come early 2009, this terrible bill will manage to get through both houses of Congress because there’s a few GOP members of the Senate who will cave to the will of the new President. If it’s Barack Obama, passage may be part of the honeymoon voters and the media give to most new Presidents, while if John McCain gets the nod these Senators will be loyal to the party but not the principles which make up the party.
History has shown that in many cases new programs such as these end up with less than promised benefits at higher than expected costs. More important to me is the assumption made by the Warner-Lieberman bill is that we as Americans can do a damn thing about the climate one way or the other, because the reality is that global temperatures are steady or even declining slightly – and have for almost a decade. I know Americans have a “can-do” attitude when faced with a problem, but some problems are beyond our ability to correct and in this case there’s no problem to address! Based on the actual temperature evidence (and not computer modeling that doesn’t take all possible factors into account in an attempt to predict future climate in 50 years), you can call me a climate change skeptic.
In short, Americans just received a stay of the execution of our standard of living. Unfortunately, this year’s Presidential election will almost certainly place a man who’s convinced – despite the evidence to the contrary – that placing another huge tax burden on the energy business would make energy cheaper and more plentiful. It will be up to right-thinking Americans to stop this mad race toward a more primitive lifestyle, and it’ll have to be fought in Congress. We’re not getting much leadership from the top of the tickets on this issue.
Just down the page, Mark Newgent has an excellent look at the bill’s projected impact on Maryland.
Crossposted on monoblogue.