Dodged A Bullet (so far)

The Waxman-Markey Bill is pretty bad, but it could have been a lot worse:

The citizen suit provision was set forth in Section 336 of the discussion draft version of ACES [Waxman-Markey], and it would have given environmental groups and other activists standing under the Clean Air Act to "commence an action" when someone has "suffered, or reasonably expects to suffer, a harm attributable, in whole or in part, to a violation or failure to act referred to in subsection (a)." Harm under this section was defined as: "For purposes of this section, the term "˜harm' includes any effect of air pollution (including climate change), currently occurring or at risk of occurring, and the incremental exacerbation of any such effect or risk that is associated with a small incremental emission of any air pollutant (including any greenhouse gas defined in Title VII), whether or not the risk is widely shared."

Wow, would this create an absolute litigation circus or what? By current anthropogenic greenhouse gas theory and under the actual text above, one could get sued for breathing.  (via Overlawyered)

  • Anon

    As a lawyer, I'm saddened to see this vital piece of the "Full Attorney Employment Act of 2009" removed.

    I didn't vote for Obama, but he sure is my friend.

  • Bob Smith

    It would appear to also allow you to sue (1) tobacco companies, (2) any business that allows smoking, (3) any restaurant that cooks over an open flame, and (4) BBQ joints. We would move ever closer to that glorious day we implement mandatory vegetarianism.

  • Rick

    Bob,

    From the recent Reason magazine "quotes" section...

    "I think in less than five years, there will be such a stigma attached to eating meat and dairy that it will be similar to smoking cigarettes today... You want to go eat a cheeseburger, then you need to go to a special room, where people are eating cheeseburgers. Wouldn't that be great!"

    - vegetarian activist Rip Esselstyn, interviewed by CBS News, April 26

    I think quackery like this is mostly a pipe dream, but that wouldn't stop some people from trying to implement a sort of neo-segregation.

  • Bob Smith

    I think quackery like this is mostly a pipe dream

    I hope so. The same (mostly) people want to get rid of pets too. It's a lot more hassle to own a dog than it used to be, for example, and you can blame anti-pet activists for it. Pipe dreams are made a bit at a time, and the left's activism is relentless and perpetual. With their control of public schools and the propaganda machine of the MSM, they've done a good job poisoning America's mind against freedom and free markets. Cheeseburgers seem easy by comparison.

  • Rick

    Perhaps I should rephrase... I think quackery of this sort is a pipe dream, not mostly. I think this is one area where if they push too far, there would be a voter revolt, similar to guns. Same could be said for pets and animals, although I have to admit I haven't seen much of that other than the occasional "pit bull" hysteria or the "cow emission" nonsense. My mother is a vegetarian and if she started sounding like Esselstyn I would stop speaking to her, seriously.

    There are many people who think of themselves as "liberal" who are huge dog and cat lovers, vets, rescuers, etc. Many of these people consider themselves "liberal" because it's trendy right now and because they disliked Bush, so like a free agent they switched teams or aligned with one that "sounded good". It's less a religion to them and more the girl of the month.

    Again, same can be said of people who enjoy a good cheeseburger every once in awhile. I know plenty of Obama voters and self-proclaimed "greens" who will never stop eating meat of some kind. The thought of an all veg diet makes them roll their eyes and many privately admit that snobby vegetarians are incredibly annoying. That said, it won't stop some nuts on the far end of the spectrum from fantasizing about vegetopia.

    Also, I think it's mostly used as a scare tactic. It scares people like us, even though we know it's quackery. So we're distracted by it and spend a lot of time and energy "debunking" or arguing. Then, it serves the dual role of scaring people dumb enough to believe the quackery... as in, "Cow emissions are 'destroying the planet' so meat eaters are 'destroying the planet', so if you eat meat, you're an evil planet killer..." or something to that affect. So even if beef and dairy are never exterminated, it doesn't matter to them. By using extreme fear mongering they can change social behavior just enough to get what they want, which is usually control of industry.

    But it doesn't always work and it's certainly not inevitable.

    I hope the sports analogy above doesn't trivialize it, but that's what I think basically describes the current social phenomenon that's shifted towards the left. It's a trend and a reaction... and like all trends it will eventually be uncool and dated. Unfortunately, some people never stop and that's why freedom is a constant battle.