Monday, March 07, 2005

Bogus "Clear Skies" Bill Going Down for Defeat

A New York Times editorial today......Clear Skies, R.I.P.

"Barring a cave-in by Democrats who have so far kept the bill bottled up in committee, President Bush's Clear Skies initiative appears dead for this session of Congress. This is no great loss to the nation. Clear Skies is a bad bill, which in the name of streamlining current law would offer considerably more relief to the industries that pollute the air than to the citizens who breathe it.

Because Clear Skies was one of Mr. Bush's signature initiatives, and the first proposed overhaul of the Clean Air Act since his father's landmark reforms of 1990, it is worth reflecting on its troubles. Clear Skies originally came attractively dressed as a grand bargain under which a market-based system of pollution control would replace the cumbersome regulatory mechanisms in existing law - resulting in less litigation, more regulatory certainty for industry and cleaner air for everybody.

The bargain quickly collapsed when the administration, prodded by Vice President Dick Cheney, began dismantling current law before even offering a Clear Skies bill - a boneheaded move that cast suspicion on the administration's motives, infuriated Democrats and made future bipartisan cooperation almost impossible. " Read more here....

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