A few years ago at the height of the global warming scare I wrote a book which set out to answer one of the key questions of our time: if climate change isn’t really a problem why do so many people act as though it is?
The answer, I discovered, is that environmentalism is just a fashionable mask for the usual leftist obsessions with state control and wealth redistribution.
That’s why I called the book Watermelons: green on the outside, red on the inside.
Not everyone who believes in man-made climate change is a full on Commie. Some are merely useful idiots. But whatever reason people may have for supporting the scam – greed, stupidity, virtue-signalling, idiot leftist teachers – the net result is the same: bigger government, higher taxes, more regulation, lower standards of living. Exactly like you’d get under communism, in fact.
So color me completely unshocked by the Green New Deal. It looks like a revamped Communist Manifesto because that’s exactly what it is.
If implemented, the size of government would increase to levels never before seen in a Western economy. The state’s control of everything from wage levels to how businesses are run to your personal freedoms would be total. There’s no mention of gulags or political prisoners or secret police but of course those would inevitably follow because how else would the state have a hope of enforcing measures which freedom loving Americans would naturally resist?
The only surprise about the Green New Deal for me is that its proponents are so brazen about their plans.
Here is what Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said about it when interviewed on NPR:
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said she has no qualms about acknowledging a so-called “Green New Deal” will mean unprecedented governmental intrusion into the private sector. Appearing on NPR, she was asked if she’s prepared to tell Americans outright that her plans involve “massive government intervention.”
“As you know, congresswoman, one reason that people are politically conservative are skeptical of efforts to combat climate change is that it sounds to them like it requires massive government intervention, which they just don’t like,” Steve Inskeep asked. “Are you prepared to put on that table that, ‘Yes actually they’re right, what this requires is massive government intervention’?”
“It does, it does, yeah, I have no problem saying that,” Ocasio-Cortez quickly replied. “Why? Because we have tried their approach for 40 years. For 40 years we have tried to let the private sector take care of this. They said, ‘We got this, we can do this, the forces of the market are going to force us to innovate.’”
Yeah. Those pesky “forces of market’ that have given us more choice and abundance than have been enjoyed by any generation before us in history…
“You can’t make an omelet without breaking eggs,” Communists are fond of saying. The Green New Deal will involve an awful lot of egg breaking.
Among its modest proposals – as detailed by Americans for Tax Reform – are:
Rebuild every single building in the U.S.
End all traditional forms of energy in the next ten years
Ban nuclear energy within ten years if possible.
Build trains across oceans and end all air travel
Unionize all new jobs…
What the Green New Deal is short on is detail as to how this rebuilding of the entire U.S. economy and infrastructure might be achieved.
AOC did provide an explainer of sorts on her website, but then took it down after it attracted mocking comments like these:
5) Key part though people is bit in fact sheet that explains why resolution is not immediately banning fossil fuels or demanding zero-emissions across economy. Because "we aren't sure that we'll be able to fully get rid of farting cows and airplanes that fast." Note "fully."
— Kimberley Strassel (@KimStrassel) February 7, 2019
7)And how to pay for mass trillions in cost? Don't worry! Federal Reserve will just "extend credit" And "new public banks can be created to extend credit too." Because, you know, like, money is just paper, and how hard can it be to make some more of the stuff, right? Right?
— Kimberley Strassel (@KimStrassel) February 7, 2019
We can joke about it all we like. And, yes, right now it’s true that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ed Markey and the rest of the Democrats pushing this insanity have done Trump 2020 the biggest favor imaginable.
But these ideas aren’t going to go away. They’ll linger, like an unexploded bomb, which may not go off for years – but whose destructive power will be utterly devastating should it ever be triggered.
As I reported before, the Green New Deal is just a warmed over version of something Sen. Bernie Sanders proposed in 2015. It also was heavily influenced by President Obama’s dodgy Environment Czar Van Jones, as well as the Canadian activist Bill McKibben.
Back then, its selling point was Keep It In The Ground – based on the notion that unless we order a moratorium on fossil fuels, the planet will fry and we’ll all die.
Problem was, it had no traction because no one, in their hearts, really believes this.
So instead, it was repackaged as a green jobs creation measure – then attached to AOC’s pretty-ish face, with much more impressive results.
How much will it cost if implemented?
Ronald Bailey at Reason has done the math and the sums involved are eyewatering:
As it happens, a team of Stanford engineers led by Mark Jacobson outlined just such a plan back in 2015. Jacobson’s repowering plan would involve installing 335,000 onshore wind turbines; 154,000 offshore wind turbines; 75 million residential photovoltaic systems; 2.75 million commercial photovoltaic systems; 46,000 utility-scale photovoltaic facilities; 3,600 concentrated solar power facilities with onsite heat storage; and an extensive array of underground thermal storage facilities.
Assuming steep declines in the costs of each form of renewable electric power generation, just running the electrical grid using only renewable power would still cost roughly $7 trillion by 2030. The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation calculated that the total cost of an earlier version of Jacobson’s scheme would amount to $13 trillion. And based on how fast it has taken to install energy generation infrastructure in the past, Jacobson’s repowering plan would require a sustained installation rate that is more than 14 times the U.S. average over the last 55 years and more than six times the peak rate.
Luckily, AOC has an easy solution to this. She’s just going to print more money.
Well it worked for Zimbabwe and Venezuela and Weimar Germany and Cuba. Didn’t it??