Thursday, March 13, 2008

Alabama gets both fear and greed from NAM

You'll see John Engle, former Michigan Governor and now President & CEO of the the National Association of Manufacturers, to the left. This guy was edged out for the Bu$hCo Veep slot by Dick Cheney. Dead Eye Dick headed the search effort so poor John may have been doomed. David Sirota thinks Big John is still working for the GOP rather than their NMA members but I digress.

I noted a piece in today's Birmingham Business Journal from Jimmy DeButts titled Manufacturers: Climate change legislation could cost Alabama 60,000 jobs. John Engler and his NAM are predicting Armageddon should the Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act go forward. I think we got to see both fear and greed from NAM illustrated with this article.

The Environmental Defense Fund thinks the legislation is grand. I'm not so sure. The EDF tends to rely on market solutions to environmental concerns and that's OK. However, I don't necessarily think giving away the permits and then letting the very polluters then make money when they start trading the caps seems fair. If the public spaces are ours then why should we just give these things away. Where's our cut? I also suggest we could do plenty with those revenue sources that relate to other solutions in energy. It seems like greed to me to want more.

There's fear here more than even greed. Mr. DeButts reports,
"The NAM study said the bill would result in a the loss of as many as 4 million jobs nationally by 2030 and cause gasoline prices to jump 145 percent by 2030. In Alabama, NAM claims the bill would result in household income falling by $6,257 by 2030."
I'll bet those numbers will get Joe and Jill Sixpack's attention. In today's economy the Big Mules can frighten the proletariat with gloom and doom. I'd bet repackaging of this theme has appeared in various other states so that NAM will get massive exposure to their claims.

Note also that NAM commissioned the study that is now predicting doom and gloom. Do you think they might have been able to find some "scientists" or "economists" or ... willing to tell them what they wanted to be told?

That the reduction targets of Lieberman-Warner might be way to low is another concern but I'll pass on trying to cover that technical facet of the issue. John Gunn

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