Politics : Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

The Inflation Reduction Act, which is mainly a climate change bill with a side helping of health reform, is a very big deal. The act isn’t, by itself, enough to avert climate disaster. But it is a huge step in the right direction and sets the stage for more action in the years ahead. It will catalyze progress in green technology; its economic benefits will make passing additional legislation easier; it gives the United States the credibility it needs to lead a global effort to limit greenhouse gas emissions.

There are, of course, cynics eager to denigrate the achievement. Some on the left rushed to dismiss the bill as a giveaway to the fossil fuel industry posing as environmental action. More important, Republicans — who unanimously opposed the legislation — are shouting the usual things they shout: Big spending! Inflation!

But actual experts on energy and the environment are giddy over what has been accomplished, and serious economists aren’t worried about the effect on inflation.

Start with the environmental side. Many people I talk to assume that President Biden’s environmental agenda, as contained in his original Build Back Better proposal, must have been greatly watered down in the legislation we actually got. After all, didn’t Democrats have to make big concessions to win over Senator Joe Manchin? Aren’t there important giveaways to fossil fuel interests, like aid for a controversial natural gas pipeline?

However, energy analysts believe that any adverse climate effect from these concessions will be swamped by the gains from tax credits for clean energy. The REPEAT Project, compiled by Princeton’s ZERO Lab, has produced a side-by-side comparison of emissions cuts under the Inflation Reduction Act and the earlier House version of Build Back Better. By 2035 the I.R.A., they estimate, will have delivered more than 90 percent of the emissions reductions that B.B.B. would have achieved. After all that legislative drama, Biden’s climate policy has emerged essentially intact.

How was this possible? Right at the beginning, the Biden administration decided that its climate policy would be all carrots, no sticks — that it would provide incentives to do the right thing, not penalties for doing the wrong thing. This strategy, it was hoped, would prove politically feasible in a way that, say, a carbon tax wouldn’t. And this hope has been vindicated.

Furthermore, it’s a strategy that seems likely to pay political dividends in the future. One new study, by E. Mark Curtis and Ioana Marinescu, finds that “the growth of renewable energy leads to the creation of relatively high paying jobs, which are more often than not located in areas that stand to lose from a decline in fossil fuel extraction jobs.”

So what did the Biden administration lose? Unfortunately, much of the social spending B.B.B. originally included — child tax credits, universal pre-K and more — was cut. That’s tragic, although enhanced health insurance subsidies — which have helped bring America’s uninsured rate to a record low — have been extended. But Democrats delivered on their climate promises, more or less in full.

What about the critique from the right? Aside from the pathetic attempt to portray the I.R.A. as a big tax hike on the middle class, Republicans like Mitt Romney are trying to lump this legislation in with last year’s American Rescue Plan, which they claim caused inflation to spike.

Never mind whether this claim is true. The key thing is to do the math. The Inflation Reduction Act calls for spending less than $500 billion over a decade, compared with the American Rescue Plan’s $1.9 trillion in a single year — and will actually reduce the deficit. That’s why independent analysts find that it will have little effect on inflation.

But if the spending isn’t very large, how can it have such a big impact? The answer is that right now we’re sitting on a sort of cusp. Renewable energy technology has made revolutionary progress, and renewables are already cheaper in many areas than fossil fuels. A moderate push from public policy is all that it will take to transition to a much greener economy. And the Inflation Reduction Act will provide that push.

Given all this, however, why did every single Republican senator vote against the I.R.A.? They aren’t all ignorant and innumerate; I’m pretty sure that Romney, for example, knows that he’s talking nonsense.

Nor can we easily invoke differences in ideology. The I.R.A.’s climate push mostly relies on tax credits — and Republicans have themselves used tax credits to achieve social goals, like the (much abused) Opportunity Zone credits in Donald Trump’s 2017 tax cut.

Almost surely, what we’re really looking at is the politics of spite. Every Republican in the Senate was willing to kill our best chance at avoiding climate disaster, simply to deny the Biden administration a win.

The good news is that the legislation passed in spite of their spite. And the world is a more hopeful place than it was just a few weeks ago.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

I wouldn't wipe my ass with this bill.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Just fucking die already, dude. You're an abusive piece of shit that offers nothing to the world.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Says the moron thar knows nothing about economics and probably has a grade 10 education at best.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

You don't deserve to live.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Did anyone ever tell you that you're a huge fucking moron.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Not really, but everyone reminds you every day, and of your unhinged abusive behavior. What happened to kissing my ass and telling me I'm a good guy? Is it because I am not falling fot your bullshit, you rotund cracker?

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Lol now you're racist?

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

I'm white, you fucking retard, and whites don't experience "real" racism.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Are you having a meltdown mate?

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

No, but your existence disgusts me. You're worse than Hungry because you try to play the victim. At least he owns being a piece of shit and doesn't seek pity.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Lol at you trying to act tough with me because you're to chicken to face Hungry.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

I constantly talk shit to him despite him knowing my address and making threats. I am not afraid. I'm also not someone with something to prove, and I'm not going to jail for physically fighting someone over dumb internet shit.

You are worse because in addition to being an asshole, you are a pussy. You're a whole fuckin nifkin.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

You seem cranky today,did you soil your panties?

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

I came all over your mom's.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

This is not what my thread is for. Can you do this in a different thread?

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

why did they call it the inflation reduction act when it's not about reducing inflation?

The Inflation Reduction Act is aimed at tackling a host of problems, from climate change to catching tax cheats, but there's one issue it may not solve: reducing inflation.

That's the conclusion of the Penn Wharton Budget Model, a group of economists and data scientists at University of Pennsylvania who analyze public policies to predict their economic and fiscal impacts. Its analysis, published Friday, comes as inflation remains near a 40-year high, crimping the budgets of consumers and businesses alike.

The Inflation Reduction Act would invest nearly $400 billion in energy security and climate change proposals, aimed at reducing carbon emissions by approximately 40% by 2030. It also would allow Medicare to negotiate with drugmakers on prescription prices, and would limit out-of-pocket drug expenses for seniors to $2,000 annually. The bill also directs $80 billion in funding to the IRS, aimed at helping the underfunded agency hire more auditors and beef up its customer service and technology.

But the impact on inflation "is statistically indistinguishable from zero," the Penn Wharton Budget Model said on Friday.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

The Great Reset is undeniable now. Yet another conspiracy theory proven correct in the aftermath of covid.

My password is password

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

What is the great reset?

My password is password

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

I’m curious too

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Democrats always save civilization. Humans would be gone by now without people who have democratic values.

My password is password

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Facts!

Without strife, your victory has no meaning.
Without strife, you do not advance.
Without strife, there is only stagnation.

Re: Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?

Almost surely, what we’re really looking at is the politics of spite
To spite is to intentionally annoy, hurt, or upset even when there might be no gain, and even when those actions might cause the person spiting harm, as well.

What the fuck is wrong with humans? No other living thing does anything out of spite.
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