Dems Frozen On Climate Change
The massive bag of foul air known as Lieberman-Warner fell 12 votes short of filibuster-stopping and 19 votes short of veto-busting, so Harry "Hand-Wringer" Reid now must decide whether to expend more of what little legislative credibility the Dems have to keep it alive, or to put it on the shelf until next year.
Cost and fuel prices drove the Senate debate. Costs? Big Lizards did a heck of a cost analysis:
For the innumerate, a trillion is a thousand billion; so $6.7 trillion is the same as $6,700 billion. Divided by 41 years (2009 through 2050) gives us an annual collection of "allowances" (that is, a tax on businesses and on energy sales) of $163.4 billion per year... and even that assumes that the Democrats didn't lowball their own estimate; if it's business as usual, their own internal figures probably show twice that big a tax -- $326.8 billion per year -- which will also certainly be written in such a way that it grows much faster than inflation (every tax seems to do that).Global warming is nothing if not an excuse for larger government and larger government budgets. America happily continues its record (somewhat bruised, but still a record) of standing up to hype and hyperbole and rejecting phony, costly global warming "solutions."
By way of contrast, the estimated expenses of Medicare Part D -- the Medicare prescription-drug benefit enacted in 2003 -- which has elicited screams of anguish not only from conservatives but even many moderates of both parties -- is a mere $36 billion per year. This brand new, carbon-rationing bureaucracy will be more than 4.5 times as large as Medicare Part D, even by the Democrats' own tendentious estimate. Under the more realistic speculation, it will be nine times as big.
But not Obama. No, he's still wrangling for those big, big programs, as was clear in his primary victory speech this week: