Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Obama Energy Policy: Head On With a Truck? Don’t Touch the Brakes! Speed Up

Obama’s singular focus on renewable energy and introducing a cap-and-trade regime runs counter to both economic rationality and current energy trends to the point of guaranteeing its inevitable failure to the huge economic detriment of the country. For the fact is that as the president starts imposing his green agenda on America, the renewable energy bubbles of the Left have burst, even as the world witnesses the astounding comeback of the kind of energy Mr. Obama scrupulously avoids mentioning – nuclear power….Green Bubbles Burst, Jamie Glazov with Alex Alexiev, Hudson Institute Fellow, 3/31/09

You didn’t hear it here first. Even deep ecology types acknowledge that nuclear reactors of modern design a) can’t melt down, b) don’t produce any greenhouse gases, and c) make a lot of otherwise impossible dreams, such as smart highways and all-electric vehicles, possible. Why is it then, like a five-foot-six guard attempting to go up with Shaquille O’Neal, the President keeps trying to block a shot that everybody knows should go through the hoop? Why indeed?

Jim Cramer, the CNBC commentator whose madcap prognostications have gotten him into hot water, made a very perceptive remark about the President a few weeks back. He said that, contrary to his own hopes as an Obama supporter, the country had elected a Lenin. What could that parallel possibly illuminate other than Cramer's penchant for theater?

Obama is clearly not a dictator in the sense that Lenin was. In Lenin’s first year, the Chekha, secret police for the Bolsheviks, were killing forty thousand people a month. But the President does share a dominant trait of Lenin’s, one noted by many writers, from Hannah Arendt to a succession of biographers. Lenin had a hieratic mind, one solely dependent for its judgments and actions on close reading of texts. Experience, facts as plain as the nose on his face, was not allowed to intervene in his decisions. Choices were made solely on the textbook analysis of Engels and Marx, whose primary subject was a radically different kind of industrial society. Lenin presumed these texts, not the consequences of Bolsheviks acts, had universal import because the writing was sound. Contradictory experience was an unfortunate contradiction, to be done away with more murders by the secret police. In other words, he was not capable of assessing the real world. His actions took place on an entirely literary plane, as if the world were a work of art and he a painter on its canvas.

Denying the contingent, as the twentieth century histories of Germany, the USSR, and Japan demonstrate, is the surest route to national suicide. The consequence of Lenin was Stalin, who killed twenty to thirty million Russians before World War II even started. A leadership that cannot acknowledge the practical consequences of its actions, that works solely from abstractions and theories, will inevitably lead its constituencies into disaster. This is the ultimate danger in politics, especially in mob politics (discussed in the Imperial Dream entry below). The mob's leader is the personification of the crowd; they aren't interested in contradictions with their mass assumptions. They expect the leader to liquidate differences of opinion to satisfy their own desire for the fulfillment of a fantasy or an abstract belief.
And we have witnessed this time and again from leaders, some of whom, in their private lives, were fairly decent men.

Alexiev sums up his fears for our own apocalypse evenly:

Worse may be in store. If Obama’s dubious energy agenda is rammed through Congress, as seems likely, not only are Americans going to be saddled with a crushing tax burden, courtesy of the bogus cap-and-trade scheme, but the country’s economic competitiveness could suffer a lasting if not irreparable damage. Such are the wages of our renewable delusions…(Green Bubbles Burst, Alexiev & Glazov, FrontPage Magazine…(cont’d)

Glazov and Alexiev, both survivors of the worst nightmare of the 20th century in the USSR, know of what they speak. Do you?


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