Like computer-generated imagery (CGI), American policy involves a lot of of fraud and fakery. Easily impressionable conservatives--among the world's b--chiest people--cast Obama as some sort of enviro-nut keen on destroying American free enterprise to save the world from (supposedly non-existent) climate change [1, 2, 3]. Nothing could be further from the truth as US environmental policy is not significantly improved from the unenlightened years of Bush the Younger.
1, 2, 3] about it from government bailouts to bouncer-sized cabin crew--but its ability to gain rents from the government is unprecedented. Never has so much been lost by so few who continue to inflict so much inconvenience and expense on the American people. A few months ago, I talked about how non-European carriers were infuriated by an EU law which was supposed to come into effect at the start of 2012 mandating that airlines pay a carbon tax based on the distance travelled by a jetliner landing at an EU airport. For instance, a flight from Atlanta to Frankfurt would be taxed over the entire distance of the trip and not just that over EU airspace. As it so happens, outrage by other nations was so great that the EU has punted on the issue, leaving implementation for a later date.Yet, Barack Obama, the so-called environmentally aware president, has (surprise!) safeguarded US airline interests ahead of schedule anyway:
The carbon fee bill was the first piece of legislation debated on the House floor after Congress returned from recess on November 13, and had been cleared by the Senate in September in a rare unanimous vote. President Barack Obama signed a bill on Tuesday shielding U.S. airlines from paying for each ton of carbon their planes emit flying into and out of Europe, despite a recent move by Europe to suspend its proposed measure for one year.
It directs the U.S. transportation secretary to shield U.S. airlines from Europe's carbon emissions trading scheme (ETS) if he or she deems it necessary. Lawyers have said the bill is unusual because it would prevent U.S. companies from complying with the laws of another country.The argument that the United States and the airlines in question would prefer a global emissions scheme is a red herring. First, a global regime would be much harder to come by when you throw in traditional opponents of multilateral environmental schemes into the mix alike China. In other words, adding more veto players makes it more likely that no carbon scheme will come into effect. Second, even the United States' experience shows that it takes a leading state to raise national environmental standards. I am of course taking about California. It has traditionally had the highest standards in America concerning automobile emissions and mileage. Rather than sell California-only models, most automakers have instead made all cars sold in the USA conform to CA emissions regulations--improving nationwide standards in the process.
Or so the logic of EU flight taxes would go. It would have put pressure on manufacturers to lessen the emissions of jets. And, given that Europe is still a very major global market, there would have been pressure for other regions to adapt. But alas, it appears even the EU is conflicted on the matter. However, this much is clear: Barack the purported Enviro-Hero is nothing more than an Enviro-Fraud in the same way that Mariah Carey tries to pass herself off as her considerably slimmer former self. How sad.
Those Americans sure do like fraud and fakery. In fact, it's an industry called "Hollywood" that just so happens to love Obama partly for his dubious environmental poses.