Alexandria Ocasio Cortez has it into her head that what America really needs is a Green New Deal, the only problem with this thought being that it doesn’t work. This is not unusual for the idea of Ocasio Cortez of course, large parts of the 20 th century operating as proofs of the unworkability of much of what she campaigns for. Note that this isn’t about the desirability of the varied end results she claims she desires. Some of those seem sensible enough – a lower carbon economy for example – it’s purely a comment upon the methods she proposes in getting from here to there. Handing over grand powers to the Federal government, along with an open chequebook, just isn’t one of those methods of doing anything very much which works. Government is a little more difficult than that.[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Ocasio-Cortez rips Democratic leadership over hesitancy on Green New Deal
Incoming congresswoman says Democratic House leaders think Green New Deal proposal is “too controversial”[/perfectpullquote]
That Democratic leadership – yea, even them – is right to be hesitant about the idea.[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””] In a Twitter thread, Ocasio-Cortez said that her proposal for a select committee on a Green New Deal — a key demand of the youth-led Sunrise Movement — contained “3 simple elements: 1. No fossil fuel money on climate cmte 2. Offer solutions for impacted communities 3. Draft sample #GreenNewDeal.” Yet all three, she said, were deemed “too controversial.” [/perfectpullquote]
Nope, controversy isn’t the problem.[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Because “we’ve got a planet to save,” she argued that “we simply don’t have any other choice” than to keep pushing for a Green New Deal. “If it’s radical to propose a solution on the scale of the problem, so be it.”[/perfectpullquote]
Nor is radicalism. The problem with the Green New Deal is that it simply doesn’t work. Or even, that it won’t work. This isn’t a controversial nor radical statement, true, therefore it won’t appeal to the Congresswoman elect. But it’s still true:[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””] But much more than theory or haggling over technical details, we have excellent empirical evidence that a Green New Deal just does not work. It’s been tried, twice, on different sides of the world and it didn’t work either time. The first time it was Australia. The global recession hits, so as a nice bit of Keynesian pump-priming they figured: Why not insulate the houses of the nation and thereby protect, or even limit, climate change? This plan from the central government meant that every bodger, crook, and incompetent got grants and tax money to ruin houses. They even had a Royal Commissionto tell us all what a disaster it was. It is not a usual belief that either Britain or the U.S. have fewer chancers than Australia. Despite this report, the British government decided to do the same thing. A central plan, with targets, disbursing rivers of tax money, to insulate the houses of the nation. This was then done so badly that there are fears that as many as a million houses have been ruined, and certainly thousands have been turned into entirely useful mushroom farms and not useful dwellings. Now Ocasio-Cortez and others are demanding the U.S. makes the same mistake. The problem is that we know it just doesn’t work. But, you know, progressives. [/perfectpullquote]
Some ideas from Alexandria Ocasio Cortez deserve our opposition because the very aim itself is a bad one. Others just because they’re a station or two beyond Dagenham. But this specific one, a Green New Deal, deserves our opposition simply because it will not work. Something we know because other people have tried it already, twice in fact, and no, wasting taxpayer money doesn’t all work out great the third time.