If only all Americans lived in the optimistic, free-enterprising world of Paul Ryan, America would be awash with new energy innovations and capital that falls from the skies like a never-ending spring, right? While I confess a soft-spot for Ryan’s Mid-West “go get-um” attitude, Ryan’s policy prescriptions are based upon ideal free market conditions that have never, and probably will never, take place in America or anywhere in the world.
In a recent Politico piece on Paul Ryan’s congressional attempts to undermine President Obama’s green energy investments, the Republican from Wisconsin’s resolution reads in part, “Ultimately, the best energy policy is one that encourages robust competition and innovation to ensure the American people an affordable and stable supply of energy.” For starters, what in the world does “robust competition” mean?
The fact of the matter is, if the market were left alone to provide America’s energy supply for the foreseeable future, it’s reasonable to assume that America’s energy providers would decimate America’s air and environments with a predominate reliance upon natural gas, coal, and oil, given their “incumbent” status.
The Republican Party narrative implies that the fossil fuel industry didn’t get jump-starts from the government (and are still receiving government subsidies, by the way) and that helping the green energy sector would be “unfair.” Boo-hoo, woe be unto these poor souls in the Republican Party and their friends in the fossil fuel industry.
So first we have the erroneous assumption that the fossil fuel industry was a child prodigy of the free market system. Secondly, Paul Ryan and his merry men in congress somehow still disregard the threat of the climate crisis that is well on our doorstep.
If America spends a little extra money now to give the green energy sector the push it needs to push towards the mainstream of energy consumption, it will be saving a lot down the road. That is, it would be good policy!
But what does the new vice-presidential candidate for the Republican Party care about America’s future, he’s already secured his own as a king-maker in the GOP. At least, that is the Republican Party way of politicking: short-term thinking for personal political goals.