Right from the outset, the six-page document laying out the “Green New Deal” seemed like a joke, something a few devious wags in the Republican Party whipped up to parody an expansive environmental plan conjured up by Democratic Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
The first words in the document put together by Ms. Ocasio-Cortez to explain the congressional resolution are “Overview — We will begin work immediately on Green New Deal bills to put the nuts and bolts on the plan described in this resolution (important to say so someone else can’t claim this mantle).”
“Important to say so someone else can’t claim this mantle?” Were these simply notes? Who edited this thing?
But after reading the full document, it all began to become clear: Apparently, a sixth-grader was given a homework assignment that read: “What would you do if you had a gazillion dollars to make the world shiny and perfect?”
In a nutshell, here’s what the grandiose Green New Deal (GND) calls for: The abolition of “every combustion-engine vehicle,” no more airplanes (you’ll have to take a train to Europe), retrofitting of every building in America to make them all compliant with new energy conservation laws, and, of course, the destruction (finally) of all those “farting cows.”
Yes, “farting cows” is actually in the document. “We set a goal to get to net-zero, rather than zero emissions, in 10 years because we aren’t sure that we’ll be able to fully get rid of farting cows and airplanes that fast,” the document says.
Wait, there’s more. The document, which the 29-year-old former bartender one month into her first term in Congress models after President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “New Deal,” also says the GND will build on FDR’s second bill of rights by guaranteeing:
• A job with a family-sustaining wage, family and medical leave, vacations, and retirement security.
• High-quality education, including higher education and trade schools.
• Clean air and water and access to nature.
• Healthy food.
• High-quality health care.
• Safe, affordable, adequate housing.
• Economic environment free of monopolies.
• Economic security for all who are unable or unwilling to work.
That’s right, even those “unwilling to work” are taken care of in the GND. Oh, and all those guaranteed jobs must be union jobs.
The plan sets a timetable to achieve the goals by 2030. That means the elimination of all fossil fuel vehicles — including those that operate on clean natural gas — along with trucks and ships and planes and trains (the document doesn’t say, but we’re assuming all the high-speed trains that would replace cars and jets are electric). But don’t worry, the proposal says the government will “build charging stations everywhere,” like, you know, totally all over, so we’re set there.
And there’s also a plan to “plant lots of trees,” so we’re covered there, too.
The word “massive” to describe the Green New Deal is used 13 times, nearly always with another word: “investments.” Just how will the U.S. pay for it? “The same way we did the New Deal, the 2008 bank bailouts and extend quantitative easing,” the document says. “The Federal Reserve can extend credit to power these projects and investments and new public banks can be created to extend credit.”
So, put it on a credit card? While some estimates run as low as $7 trillion, PJ Media compiled its own estimate, which came in at nearly $50 trillion. Does a Visa credit card limit even go that high?
But forget all that paying for stuff. Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, who graduated cum laude from Boston University majoring in international relations and economics, said in a short Q&A written into the document that the plan will create “unprecedented levels of prosperity and wealth for all while ensuring economic and environmental justice and security.” Asked and answered.
Throughout the document, the hubris of the plan is evident. After citing FDR and the New Deal that helped pulled America out of the Great Depression, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez also refers to President John F. Kennedy’s call to put a man on the moon within a decade, Lyndon B. Johnson’s Great Society that instituted social welfare programs, and the interstate highway system begun under Dwight D. Eisenhower. She’s just that big a thinker.
The proposal was mercilessly ridiculed on social media, and even House Speaker Nancy Pelosi seemed to mock the infantile blueprint. “It will be one of several or maybe many suggestions that we receive,” Mrs. Pelosi said. “The green dream, or whatever they call it, nobody knows what it is, but they’re for it, right?”
Here’s the bottom line: The GND proposal is an absolute non-starter, for one simple reason: When you’re too left even for Speaker Pelosi, you ain’t going nowhere.
⦁ Joseph Curl covered the White House and politics for a decade for The Washington Times. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @josephcurl.
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