Now that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has declared herself the boss of the Green New Deal, will she also claim ownership of EPA’s multi-billion dollar product known as government “certified” energy efficiency? Very few Americans know anything about ENERGY STAR, arguably the most corrupt federal program in history that allegedly invented the most valuable commodity ever. For bureaucrats.
In 2006, Katherine Mangu-Ward of Reason wrote that in the 1990s, Businesses “learned that it’s pretty easy being green:”
Ask Bob Langert about the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and he starts to chuckle. “When we meet the regulators, it’s kind of nice,” says the senior director for social responsibility at the McDonald’s Corporation. “We just got an award from the EPA. When we see the regulators, we always hope it’s because they’re giving us an award.”
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The idea of the rich corporate villain gleefully dirtying Mother Earth is powerful and appealing. Children of the 1980s encountered this supervillain in comics, movies, public awareness videos, and science textbooks. Times were good for mandatory recycling, for mandatory emissions reductions, for anything mandatory aimed at restraining corporate polluters.
But in the late ’90s, something peculiar started happening. The men in suits were still middle-aged, round, and white. They were still just as concerned with profit and golf. Very few of them sported tie-dyed attire, aside from the occasional whimsical Jerry Garcia tie. But the men in suits started caring. Or at least acting like they cared. Which, if you ask a spotted owl, is the same thing.
So environmental activists across the nation bought their own ties and started dealing with corporations as almost-equal partners in planet saving. Businesses in turn learned that it’s pretty easy being green.
Thus paving the way for the corporatism and crony venture socialism of the Obama era’s original “Green New Deal.” But in the first draft of the latest “Green Nude Eel,”* AOC’s ghostwriters went far beyond Obama’s corporatism into full-on crankery. No need for her to bother with the Energy Star program — as the old joke goes, What did socialists use before candles? Electricity.