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Monday, January 26, 2009

Barack Obama's Environmental Policy and Inauguration Carbon Footprint

Source Material (edits are mine and Copyright of the Humble Libertarian 2009)

Today we have this headline: Obama presses for tougher controls on US car emissions

Barack Obama made his opening move in the greening of America's economy yesterday, using his presidential authority to press for tougher emissions controls on cars and promising global leadership on climate change.

In signing a pair of executive orders, Obama delivered his strongest repudiation to date of the policies of George Bush, inviting environmentalists to the White House to announce that America would play a global leadership role on climate change.

Less than a week after an inauguration unprecedented in size, cost, and pollution levels, Obama has shown some audacity for sure. This is another example of America's systemic failure to live up to the wise adage of the venerable Mahatma Gandhi- to be the change that we want to see in the world. Instead we force the change that we want to see in the world on everyone else and in many cases fail to live up to the demands of that change ourselves.

An Inconvenient Truth

How could Obama and the environmentalists believe that our climate and pollution situation is an emergency and yet emit over 500 million pounds of CO2 in an unnecessarily extravagant inauguration? Why can't Obama and his followers suit action to words? What I personally find even more appalling, is the 130 tons of trash left behind by the crowds, which didn't consist exclusively of garbage, but included left behind tables, sleeping bags, blankets, hand warmers, and other personal effects. In an event that was supposed to exemplify unity, change, responsibility, and "the putting away of childish things," we have people committing a selfish, common, irresponsible, and entirely childish act- that of failing to clean up after themselves.

"No we can't!" save the environment.

Echoing what may become a common theme on this blog, this is yet another example of the "No we can't!" mentality at work. We have said collectively as a nation by voting for Barack Obama and his environmental policies, "No we can't be the change we want to see in the world and live up to our values by purchasing cleaner and more efficient cars voluntarily. No we can't put economic pressure on car companies to produce the vehicles we desire by refusing to buy vehicles we believe harm the environment. Hell, we can't even pick up our own newspapers and sleeping bags and throw them away or carry them out because it's easier to leave them in the street for someone else to deal with! So it's great to have a President who will force us all to be responsible, especially people who disagree with us."


  1. Just for the record, the linked article says that the inauguration festivities produced 500 million pounds of CO2, not 500 million tons.

  2. Oops! That was a typo (as you can see from the correct unit in the graphic)- just fixed it. There is a pretty huge difference between so many pounds and so many tons. Thanks so much for pointing that out.


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