Wednesday, February 06, 2019
How rapidly can Democrats turn the U.S. into Venezuela?
Senator Kamala Harris has pledged to follow the “New Green Deal” currently championed by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. In other words, if enacted, the Democrats, within ten years of passing the bill, would favor ending all “nonrenewable” sources of electrical generation (natural gas, oil, coal, and nuclear) — or 83 percent of all the current ways that we produce electrical energy. Would the government go after classic Corvettes, confiscate Priuses, and electrify NASCAR? Outlaw gas lawn mowers and chain saws? Confiscate leaf blowers? Would Nancy Pelosi board a private solar- or battery-powered jet? Would Silicon Valley yachts rely on wind and sail?
We get almost no information about the real costs, much less the effect on the now booming U.S. energy sector. America is currently the largest producer of gas and oil in the world. Energy production is a vital source of national wealth, central to millions of American workers, and perhaps the greatest subsidy of middle-class lifestyles, through inexpensive fuel. Would fracking and horizontal drilling become like corn-mash stills during Prohibition?
The New Green Deal would wipe out the economies of a broad swath of states including Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Such legislation would make Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign blunder—“We’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business”—seem in comparison not a major gaffe, but timid and counterrevolutionary.