How “Green” is the Green New Deal?


Via VOX: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) speaks as she and Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) unveil the Green New Deal resolution.
 Alex Wong/Getty Images

We’re just a little under two weeks away from the meteorological start of Spring, so of course it’s a perfect time to think about the environment. Specifically, I want us to think about the Green New Deal that was announced at the beginning of February.

You know, the Green New Deal that is a hot topic in the political world, but was deliberately designed to lack any specifics.

And actually, the more you read about the Green New Deal (or GND, in homage to the firebrand U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s now famous shorthand acronym AOC), the more it makes sense that there isn’t a whole lot of specifics. At least initially.

Think about it. If they were to have said “No nuclear power at all”, or “No cap and trade” in the resolution that was put out there, then people could target those specific proposals and destroy the plan before it even had a chance to see the light of day.

A New Green Big Tent

Instead, by being vague, AOC and her Congressional partners in designing the GND could open the canvas of the tent, letting in as many people as possible. This would create a groundswell of support that would make it easier to push the topic and work out the details later.

You see, the idea is to promote wanting to do something to combat the horrible facts facing the environment. They legislators lay those out in the resolution. They are appealing to our “lizard brains,” our emotions. Then, they are presenting facts to make the leap to help us justify the emotional response to the proposition. They are selling us. And by keeping it vague they are making it easier on their end to sell.

A Moonshot on Earth

In all honesty, I was impressed to see that someone in our political “leadership” would put forth a grand plan like the GND. It hearkens back to when President Kennedy announced that we would put a man on the moon. And we did that in eight years.

Do you think we can do the same now?

I have my doubts.

Not because I don’t think we shouldn’t try. We should. We definitely should.

That is the great thing about America. We’re not afraid to try. At least we weren’t.

Back in 1962, we weren’t. And we weren’t when we had to mobilize to save the world from the Nazi darkness. And we certainly weren’t when the specter of Communism reared its ugly head in the 1980s. Or after September 11, 2001.

Yet, the reason I have my doubts is because we are different now.

We are a divided country, one that, rather than look for ways to compromise and find a solution that works, would rather immediately tear down any idea that isn’t mine.

And that sucks. It sucks because we need to do something. The more we argue, the less we get done. And the more the environment will erode. There will be a point where there is no going back. It may well already have passed. I hope not.

Is it naive, or “green” to think that we could accomplish the things laid out in the GND? I don’t think it is. What about you? Can we do it?

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