Wednesday :: Mar 25, 2009

A Brief Delay. We Must Hope.

by Turkana

In his news conference, last night, President Obama made clear that he doesn't consider it necessary to include his promised cap-and-trade program in the current budget package. My initial reaction was, of course, great disappointment. But it's simply not worth muddling the budget debate with an issue that is so contentious, even among Congressional Democrats. Even if it is, as I believe, the single most important issue humanity has ever faced. Because the Obama budget is a radical reversal of decades of fiscal manipulation and mismanagement. Getting his budget passed and implemented is critical. And it should provide him the political cover he needs to push through cap-and-trade, which he is clearly stating he still intends to do.

The difficulty in getting cap-and-trade is made clear, in this short post by dday, which elucidates the propaganda with which both Congressional recusants and the corporate media are attempting to obfuscate what's really happening. They're spinning the removal from the budget package of a $400 tax credit as a measure towards deficit reduction. Which is a lie:

But Obama paid for that tax cut in his budget. It was tied to revenue from a cap and trade plan. The reason the tax cut is out has nothing to do with expense, but because cap and trade has been excised. Kent Conrad and the Axis of Centrism just don't want to deal with climate change in a meaningful and substantive way, which will lead to more extreme weather, loss of snowpack, more hardship for farming, the loss of a great deal of the American coastline, and untold disaster funding needs.

This is how the government spends money in the name of saving it. And this is how "fiscal responsibility" is used as a cover to block progress.

In other words, Obama will have his work cut out for him, getting cap-and-trade passed. We can afford this short delay, as the budget is given first priority, but it is critical that it be but a short delay. There already are clear indications that Obama takes climate change seriously. Let's hope he has the stomach for the fight it will take to get Congress and the corporate media to take it seriously. He hasn't yet really tested his lofty approval ratings. On no issue would it be more impressive or more important that he do so.

Turkana :: 11:05 AM :: Comments (11) :: Digg It!