If you’re a liberal and you’re going to have a grand plan to waste people’s money — as opposed to the nickel-and-dime big-government spending of earmarks and the like — you’d better have a good name for it. And you’d better be able to talk it up.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez hadn’t even taken office as of Wednesday morning, but she’s managed to get both of those things down pat. Her great scheme is called the “Green New Deal,” a piece of draft legislation to create a committee that would essentially end our use of fossil fuels.
Even before the draft legislation came out, Ocasio-Cortez compared it to the mobilization against the Nazis during World War II. She’s also called it a vehicle for “establish(ing) economic, social and racial justice in the United States of America.”
And now, this profoundly job-killing piece of legislation is being compared to the work done by Martin Luther King, Medgar Evers and Bayard Rustin. Oh, and it’s also going to roll Neil Armstrong and Franklin Delano Roosevelt into the mix.
That’s at least the takeaway from a soundbite from a Monday town hall meeting hosted by socialist independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont where Ocasio-Cortez talked up her “Green New Deal.” (New Year’s resolution for all of us in 2019: Can we please stop calling campaign rallies and/or media pseudo-events where a few people ask painfully scripted questions “town hall meetings?”)
“This is going to be the New Deal, the Great Society, the moon shot, the civil rights movement of our generation,” Ocasio-Cortez said, according to Fox News.
That’s a very charitable way to view a piece of legislation that sounds like something from a soft reboot of “Atlas Shrugged,” with Ocasio-Cortez playing the part of Wesley Mouch.
The bill would set up a “select committee (which) shall have authority to develop a detailed national, industrial, economic mobilization plan … for the transition of the United States economy to become greenhouse gas emissions neutral and to significantly draw down greenhouse gases from the atmosphere and oceans and to promote economic and environmental justice and equality.”
One ought to pay serious attention to Ocasio-Cortez’s rhetoric, too. She doesn’t picture this as some idle commission or some trifling government program like “cash for clunkers.” Granted, that may not seem trifling, but the kind of “economic mobilization plan” Ocasio-Cortez has in mind is straight out of World War II.
“So when we talk about existential threats, the last time we had a really major existential threat to this country was around World War II,” Ocasio-Cortez said at an October event. “And so we’ve been here before and we have a blueprint of doing this before.
“None of these things are new ideas. What we had was an existential threat in the context of a war. We had a direct existential threat with another nation, this time it was Nazi Germany and the Axis, who explicitly made the United States as an enemy, as an enemy.
“And what we did was that we chose to mobilize our entire economy and industrialized our entire economy and we put hundreds of thousands if not millions of people to work in defending our shores and defending this country. We have to do the same thing in order to get us to 100 percent renewable energy, and that’s just the truth of it.”
Perhaps you don’t grasp just what that means. Let me assure you that, despite her gaffes and her inability to name the three branches of government, Rep.-elect Ocasio-Cortez grasps it all too well. What it means is that, like the United States trying to beat the Nazis, our country would be turned into a command economy where almost all of what would be produced would be what was essential to beat an entirely abstract enemy.
If World War II is the blueprint, all consumer products that aren’t necessary for survival and don’t go directly toward that effort would be considered mere fripperies. This would make said “mobilization” a type of austerity, and there’s no evidence these are the products that would sell in the global economy.
At the same time, our energy costs would skyrocket, as has happened in countries with green energy programs not nearly as ambitious as Ocasio-Cortez’s. It would cost millions of jobs and almost certainly make our families staggeringly poorer, all for the same low, low price of winning a world war.
Ocasio-Cortez and her kind think this is our moon shot, folks. This is our civil rights movement, where the chains of gainful employment are broken from so many Americans. She’s literally inviting a comparison between job-killing, lazy environmentalism and the brave men and women who endured police dogs and fire hoses to end de jure and de facto segregation in Dixie.
Even the New Deal and Great Society, not exactly moments of unalloyed American greatness in my book, deserve better than this sort of association.
Charlie Kirk, the Turning Point USA founder and frequent Twitter sparring partner of Ocasio-Cortez, may have put it best when asked by Fox News about the legislation: “With Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, she’s constantly wrong, but never in doubt,” Kirk said.
“She’s definitely catering to the elites in Malibu or Manhattan, but she’s going to lose Missouri, Indiana and the middle part of the country talking about eliminating hundreds of thousands of jobs, raising utility costs and spending trillions of dollars we don’t have.”
It’s worth pointing out that the committee wouldn’t actually have any sort of power and, as of right now, this has roughly zero chance of existing in the form Ocasio-Cortez wants it to. But that’s the point — Ocasio-Cortez wants it to, and this is supposed to be the future of the Democrat Party. This is where the left wants to go, and it ought to frighten every American.
She may be able to talk it up. She may have that catchy name. Don’t let it fool you. The Green New Deal is the scorpion, and we’re all one very big, very vulnerable frog.