Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Bush Refuses to Raise Emissions Standards

After years of refusing even to issue a decision, the EPA has rejected California's request to set higher emissions standards for vehicles. It is a smack in the face to Schwarzenegger. And it is surely no accident that this comes today, buried in the news on the very day Bush signed into law the new CAFE standards, trying to trumpet his "green" credentials. (Although of course the new standards were forced on him and he only agreed to them kicking and screaming.)

With one hand, Bush giveth; with the other he taketh away. Gods, what a lousy administration!


Dr. Strangelove said...

I heard on the radio this morning that, in denying the waiver to California and 16 other states, Bush's EPA administrator overruled the unanimous verdict of his legal staff. They just get ballsier every passing month, don't they?

Raised By Republicans said...

Is environmental protection going to be the next states' rights issue!? I thought the Republicans were all for states' rights! I guess that's only when they aren't in charge in the White House. What a bunch of raging hypocrits!

USWest said...

They only care about states' rights when you are talking red states.

I'd like to point out that CA has long had the right (or was it a privilege?)to set higher environmental standards for itself than those set by the EPA, simply because we had such bad air for so long. Of course, that was when the bad air was in LA. Now it is sitting over the Central Valley where all the food is grown. But we'll ignore that detail.

What happens is the bad air from the coast blows over the Coastal Range and then gets trapped in the Central Valley. Added to that, the population of that area has grown rather quickly due to Bay Area refugees (known locally as BATS- Bay Area Transits because you only seem them at night). BATS came looking for cheaper housing and ended up with longer commutes along with all the environmental and economic problems that brings to the local community. Added to that is that industrial farming has been less than green as an industry with the chemicals. Now, local farmers are using their land as their retirement plan by selling to developers. So you want to know why food prices are going up? It isn't just because of fuel costs.

This is an issue that matters to me because I grew up on the Central Valley (a.k.a San Joaquin Valley) and my family still lives there. So I lived it and breathed it for 22 years, then I moved. I go home now and the allergies flair up, your nose bleeds,you have headaches, people are barred from using their fireplaces to off-set heating costs, etc. It is a huge chain reaction.

So this is more than a slap at our governor. It was a slap at an economically powerful, solidly blue state of California. Those guys in Texas just keep screwing California- first it was energy deregulation, now this.

USwest said...

oh, and one more thing: it is a slap at a state that is trying to build a green based economy. All the Tech companies know that the future is in green technology. Google is trying to find ways to power itself using solar power. It is the new wave in the Silicon Valley. Heaven forbid if California was at the heart of yet another life changing boom! Couldn't have that! It would ruin Texas oil and all those car plants in the Red dotted south.
What the hell to Dick and George care. They will be dead while the rest of us are left trying to save the planet.

Raised By Republicans said...

Good point about the auto industry being largely in the South now. Back in the day we thought of Michigan, Ohio and Indiana as the heart of the auto industry and there are still major auto industry centers in those states but much of the work has moved to the Old Confederacy with its non-union shops and lax regulations and even laxer enforcement.

Here's another thing I don't get. The Republicans like to think that the market drives everything. They also claim frequently that regulations drive away investment. So why should they care if California wants to increase their environmental standards? If the Republican world view is correct, California will be committing economic suicide by doing that.

Here's the thing. Research I've seen in areas from chemical regulations to accounting regulations suggest that increased levels of regulatory protection do not significantly deter investment. It's a bit conspiratorial to think they're screwing California to avoid disproving their own ideological theories. But I do think they're overruling California because they know their buddies in the auto and oil industry will want to be heavily invested in California regardless of the regulations and they want those regulations to be as inexpensive for their buddies as possible. Fairly obvious conclusion.

USWest said...

Well, they also hate California- period. We aren't conservative enough and our money helped put Bill Clinton in the White House twice. They won't forgive that. And don't underestimate the disdain Texans and California's have for each other. It's sibling rivalry. But RBR is right. In the end, the prime motivation is economic.

Raised By Republicans said...

Siblings Hell! Texans are barely Americans. They came late to the party and tried to leave early without paying their share of the tab! As someone who paid taxes in California before and after the manufactured power crisis there, I want my $30 Billion back from Texas!!