Both Jonah Goldberg and Jim Geraghty’s Jolt are on the Green New Deal this week. At first glance it seems like a real waste of talent (leave the low hanging fruit for MWG!) to deal with an obscure and silly document from the Green Party of all places.
Sidebar: As Jim says, you should read it. See the cite above. It is much worse than you could imagine. End Sidebar.
But as MWG recently warned, folks are going to try to ignore the important issue of entitlement reform and replace it with climate change. Jonah and Jim are on the case because of a new press favorites has supported it.
We suppose there is some chance that the Congress could pass something as foolish as the Green New Deal but the more likely problem is that the pressure put on by the crazies will cause Congress to feel that it must do something. We see a situation similar to 2005 that led to the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and to the ethanol mandate. Although W and the GOP held both houses (well, they added four in the Senate) of the Congress in 2004, there was pressure to do something about what was then called global warming but we now call climate change. Evidence of the pressure is Al Gore winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. We did not make that up.
We are of two minds about the 2005 Act. As a binary choice we would vote against it. The ethanol mandate interferes with markets. As we would have predicted, it has caused problems for both gas and corn. But it wasn’t a binary choice. There was lots of pressure to do something about climate. Our view is the the 2005 Act took the wind out of the extremist’s sails. Without the 2005 act it is possible that something really nasty would have passed Congress. In 2018, the situation is even more troubling as the Democrats control the House.
Therefore, it is good that Jim and Jonah are out in front giving the Green New Deal the opprobrium it deserves. It is just as important that Kevin is on the entitlement beat again and again. MWG tries to help. We think the events of 2005 are likely to recur and Congress will feel great pressure to do something. Unfortunately, we have The Donald rather than W. Conservatives may have some difficult decisions about what is the least worst option. Our best chance is to make it clear what a really, really bad idea the Green New Deal is and the importance of dealing with debt and entitlements. Thanks to Jim, Jonah, and Kevin for a good start.