'Good for GM' No Longer Good For America
But in the United States, where the Democrats have just won control of Congress, one would expect some new, some reinvigorated thinking on how to curb emissions, right? Wrong! The presumptive head of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, John Dingell of Michigan, has already announced that raising the fuel-efficiency standards of American cars is not on the table. Unfortunately for us, Dingell, whose been a lawmaker since 1955, seems to have his head stuck in an era when fuel-efficiency didn't matter. But this is 2006, and what's good for GM is no longer good for America or for the world. In fact, it might be down-right deadly.
We don't need this kind of leadership. Dingell should step aside.
Updated 2006/11/12, 7:30 AM PST -
The Washington Post is running an interesting article today about how the Democrats plan to bring to the 110th Congress the same energy that Republicans brought in 1994. Fine words, but I'd point out that ossified attitudes toward profound issues like global climate change are exactly what the Democrats don't need, especially before they've even swapped offices with their GOP counterparts.
They care just as much about votes and money as the Repukes... we have to scare them into seeing our point of view by threatening them with the purse strings and votes.
Easy...listening Rep. Pelosi? Excellent.
Truly, I have let my Dingell-dangle dangle in the dirt.
Anyway, consumers have to lead in this area and not depend on politicians. E85 gasoline is an example. GM now produces 25% of their trucks to run on E85. As consumers purchase more of these vehicles and actually buy the alternative fuels, businesses will produce more, but there has to be a demand.
Kathy, I think that citizens pushing for Dingell to be dumped as chairman of Energy and Commerce is leading in this area.
Snave, Dingell been around quite a while, I doubt he's too concerned about relection anymore. But you're not wrong his, and everyone's, taking up a long-term view. We're in deep yogurt environmentally, and I don't see us getting out of this mess without drastic action.
Consumers have to change their attitudes too. If upping CAFE standards only results in people buying larger vehicles and driving more (which studies show happened) then what's the point? Maybe we need a massive consumer campaign similar to that along the lines of drunk driving and cigarette smoking to get the message across that we're killing ourselves and the environment.
I'm not letting Dingell and other politicians off the hook, but consumers need to be held accountable too.
I agree with every one of your takes here, Kathy. It is up to consumer demand when it comes to what producers will supply.
The problem with the quoted bit is, as I bet you know, "jobs are what's on the line" is how the pols, with some accuracy, will respond. Since there are far more high paying Auto Industry jobs than ever were there tobacco pprocessing or brewery/distillery positions, well, there's also far more dollars AND votes to be lost by promoting alternatives.
None the less, promoting and providing incentives for alternatives are the only way the majority of people are gonna get it thru their short-sighted and ignorant skulls that Global Warming will, not might, WILL utterly alter their ways of life. Hell! It's already "too late" to prevent it from destroying and displacing at least hundreds of thousands of folks over the next 40 or so years.
Despite the fact that some large corps have made substantial changes to their plans re: their Climate affecting activities, Legislative Action now, and Better Education! of our youth going forward are the best we can do to offset environmental changes which have building up steam for decades.