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I'm an old-fashioned conservative who wretched when both W and McCain bought into AGW. And, I'm afraid that you're correct, if an R brought up cap & trade, some Rs would follow.
It seems to me that Obama's energy plan is to tax and create shortages to the point where energy is simply too expensive use, as we do today. Forced conservation, with the poorest hit the hardest.
What is it about the energy plan you like? Cap and trade? Merely a tax on business, which will be, as all taxes are, passed on to the consumer. No real benefit re: energy independence or production, which are one and the same. A study from the EU has bemoaned the fact that cap & trade does nothing for reduction of CO2.
Perhaps it's the "green jobs?" Then please review http://www.juandemariana.org/pdf/090327-employment-public-aid-renewable.pdf. From the executive summary:
"Optimistically treating European Commission partially funded data1, we find that for every renewable energy job that the State manages to finance, Spain’s experience cited by President Obama as a model reveals with high confidence, by two different methods, that the U.S. should expect a loss of at least 2.2 jobs on average, or about 9 jobs lost for every 4 created, to which we have to add
those jobs that non-subsidized investments with the same resources would have created.
The study calculates that since 2000 Spain spent €571,138 to create each “green job”, including subsidies of more than €1 million per wind industry job.
The study calculates that the programs creating those jobs also resulted in the destruction of nearly 110,000 jobs elsewhere in the economy, or 2.2 jobs destroyed for every “green job” created."
The total over-cost – the amount paid over the cost that would result from buying the electricity generated by the renewable power plants at the market price - that has been incurred from 2000 to 2008 (adjusting by 4% and calculating its net present value [NPV] in 2008), amounts to 7,918.54 million
Euros (appx. $10 billion USD)
The total subsidy spent and committed (NPV adjusted by 4%) to these three renewable sources amounts to 28,671 million euros ($36 billion USD)."
So let's review - No nukes [Obama said he will support nukes, when we solve the nuclear waste problem - then promptly shut down Yucca mountain]. No coal plants [promised in the election that he'd cap & trade 'em to death]. No drilling for oil or natural gas [what other country on earth refuses to use its own resources - sheer lunacy]. Love solar, but we can't put them in the desert because it might impinge on the habitat, plus there is no grid, and we can't run the grid through state parks [see, the recent decision in California] - plus, and most importantly, it simply isn't feasible for a large percentage, say 15% to 20%, of energy production in the foreseeable future. Love wind, but again, economically prohibitive as there is no way to produce energy when the wind dies, there is no economically feasible way to "save" the energy for when it's needed, and again, there is no grid to get the power from where it's produced to where it's needed [we'll forget about Teddy K's NIMBY protests for right now]. Can't do hydro-electric - not "green" enough.
I really don't see what you Libs expect. We'll become a third world economy, while China, India, etc. become our economic masters, all for what?
You want energy independence? Drill, Drill, Drill. In conjunction [don't tell other conservatives this, just between us] put a "small" tax ONLY for purposes of R&D and some subsidies of renewable resources, such as wind, solar, etc. Plus nukes, plus coal. I'm all for conservation - but not at the price of economic suicide.

Walter, thanks for your comment. I don't know if I can address all of your points before my wife serves dinner, but here goes:

1. Green jobs are a cost, as well as a benefit. But all of the spending will be in some way stimulative at this point in time. Whether the right jobs are created is still to be determined.

2. Cap and Trade, in my opinion, is the best way to let industry decide the cheapest way to reduce energy consumption. And we do want that--skeptic and alarmist, Dem and Rep--right?

3. I write elsewhere on this blog about alternatives to alternative energy that I think could pick up the slack. I support nuclear power as well--and I think it will return soon.

4. I completely agree with you on the looniness of my representative (Nancy Pelosi) regarding solar in the desert. I do think cooler heads will prevail, in time...

5. I honestly don't think that America will become a third world economy any time soon. I actually think our best days are ahead of us.

Thanks for commenting--feel free to tell me I'm full of it...

Oh dear - I typed in a long post, just skewering you on every point, and then a little message came up and said my data wouldn't/couldn't be accepted. "Hah, typical lib," I said to myself, "blocking the truth!" Well, I really didn't say that, and I really didn't skewer you, but I was disappointed. I hope to respond shortly, but my wife doesn't serve me dinner [how chauvinistically unliberated you are!] and I've got to cook. Thanks for being a civil blogger - too few in my opinion.

Okay, back to it. From the bottom - if you don't mind. I will not tell you that you are full of it - I save that for my screaming matches with my lib friends at work [I work in a very D county office]. Besides, as I grow older, I tend not to tell people how wrong they are [eventhough they are] as I got "clean for Gene" in '68 [if you're too young for that, well....]. I don't want them throwing that in my face!

[5] I probably overstated the "third world economy," but I do see us slouching toward France, which, while not Gomorra, is economically close enough. Suffice it to say that the French model is not what made us a driving economic global force, allowing us to literally feed the world.

[4] Pelosi doesn't bother me [well, yes she does, but that's beside the point], it's the fact that serious people take arguments like that seriously and in a vacuum. No solar here, it would harm the ____. No nukes there, no coal here, no hydro-electric there and certainly, no drilling anywhere. Really, where will the energy come from? We have nothing in the short-to-middle term to pick up the slack. It's not just US business that will suffer, it will be those we cannot feed and clothe. Cheap energy and means of production brings prosperity and the ability to drink clean water, go to a clean hospital and eat good food. Nothing good comes from having a lack of energy.

[3] I will nose around your site re: alternatives, but I am a skeptical about "picking up the slack." I do not share your optimism about nuclear power - and how can you back Obama's energy plan when it implicitly, if not explicitly, shuns nuclear power?

[2] Cap and trade is the antithesis of "industry decid[ing] the cheapest way to reduce energy consumption." It is the government setting up artificial barriers [taxes] and forcing us to make decisions that have been pre-determined by bureaucrats. Sorry, but putting money into the government for no good reason cannot be a good thing. Reducing consumption - great, as long as it does not negatively effect our standard of living. We have plenty of energy available, so long as government allows us to use it. To sacrifice our standard of living and economy on the altar of conservation for no apparent reason is simply wrong. Don't waste energy, become more efficient, great. Become a nation that produces less so that someone, somewhere will think better of us is counter-productive, not just for us, but also for those who depend on us.

[1] Sorry, can't buy No. 1. It's not only the cost of the wasteful jobs, it's the lost opportunity of placing the capital in the jobs that are needed/desired by private industry. Moreover, generally, when private business makes a mistake, it's generally on a lesser scale and it's the investors that pay the price [don't talk to me about the bailouts - it makes me crazy]. When the government makes a mistake, generally, it's a whopper [think ethanol and Archer Daniels Midland (is that the right company?) what an absolute boondoggle, based on a well-intentioned idea] and somebody is forcing me to pay.

Well, I'm off to look around your place. Don't mind me, just pretend I'm not here - although that dinner your wife is serving looks mighty tasty!

Hi again--it was tasty. I did the dishes, if that gives me any lib street cred.

Let's start with cap and trade, but looking at it from the business side. All things being equal, if they can avoid emitting CO2 they save money. If they buy rights to emit from somebody else, they save money--just not as much. If they cannot avoid emitting CO2, they have to spend money--and much of that will be passed on to us, no question. But Obama has said pretty clearly that the money raised from auctions will be returned to the taxpayer, either wholly or in part.

It's not a perfect system. But if you believe that America needs to reduce its dependence on foreign oil, if you believe that we need to invest in new technologies to get us there, what would you advise? The private sector has had a long time to make changes that everyone knew was coming--but nothing really happened. (That's not strictly true--energy efficiency has increased by about 1% a year for a very long time, and that does add up. But we've misused this savings by building bigger cars, etc.)

I can understand people not liking cap and trade. But what do you propose as an alternative? If some whiz kid in some company can get rich by figuring out how to save a ton of energy and can sell that to other companies as a proxy permit, don't we all benefit?

Why do I keep getting the message that my data cannot be accepted. Am I doing something really stupid?

Hi again, Walter. I don't know--it doesn't happen to me, or to you on the ones that have gotten through. Do you do the same thing every time?

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