The Center for Political Cover

by Paul Chesser, Heartland Institute Correspondent on May 19, 2009

in Blog

With some Democrats threatening to kill Waxman-Markey before it gets out of subcommittee this week, the Center for American Progress Action Fund (the activism arm of the Soros-CAP) is doing its best to provide cover for them as they reluctantly support the bill. CAPAF calls these five swing voting congressmen “moderates,” and the media (even the Washington Times) almost unanimously follows suit. This is cloaking the dirty secret that even liberals are having trouble voting for this huge, regressive tax.

And who are these so-called CAPAF “moderates?” One is North Carolina’s G.K. Butterfield, a member of the Congressional Black Caucus who is a reliable vote for liberal causes and redistribution of wealth. His view about Waxman-Markey from just a couple of weeks ago: “What do I tell a single mom making eight dollars an hour?”

Another is that renowned Democrat moderate, Bobby Rush. After visiting Fidel Castro in Cuba with the CBC last month, Rush told Politico, “It was almost like listening to an old friend.” Meanwhile the House Republican Whip’s office has compiled a long list of Democrats, both moderate and liberal, who are troubled by the economic and political ramifications from Waxman’s American Clean Energy and Security Act.

CAPAF is trying to make their “moderates” feel better about supporting the bill. They just sent a press release to the Tar Heel media saying, “Rep. Butterfield’s Vote on Clean Energy Legislation Could Mean Thousands of New Jobs for North Carolina.” The release promotes findings from an analysis paid for by its sister organization, the Center for American Progress, pushing the fantasy that trillions in new energy taxes will create 62,015 new green jobs in NC and that state taxpayers are currently paying $730 million to subsidize big oil and gas companies (egads!). They probably sent something similar to Illinois media on Rush’s behalf as well.

The Left is clearly terrified that their global warming con is sinking fast. Every new poll that’s come out this year on global warming and raising energy taxes shows more skepticism from Americans than the previous one. Environmental socialism, indeed.

Meanwhile Americans for American Energy (and Senator Kit Bond) is outing the truth behind that CAP green jobs analysis:

The Bond report is sobering to say the least. Two high profile environmental group programs, the New Apollo Program, promoted by the Apollo Alliance, and the Green Recovery Program, by the Center for American Progress, would, at a cost of $500 billion and $100 billion respectively, create 5 million and 2 million jobs. That works out to a program (read taxpayer) cost of $100,000 and $50,000 per job, respectively.

But what kind of jobs do Americans get with highly subsidized “green jobs?” Some of the richest incentives documented resulted in lower wage jobs than the green marketing campaigns would suggest. For instance, the Bond report outlines three troubling examples:

  • Solaicx, Portland, Oregon – manufactures silicon ingots and wafers for photovoltaic applications and, after receiving $21.5 million in state and local subsidies to expand its plant and create 66 new jobs ($325,758 per job subsidy), workers are paid only $13.00 per hour.
  • United Solar Ovonic, Battle Creek, Michigan – makes thin film flexible photovoltaic laminates used in the solar industry. According to the report, the company got $96.9 million in subsidies (the company press release said $120 million) at a subsidy of $276,857 per job. Worker pay: $14.00 per hour.
  • Suniva, Norcross, Georgia – a manufacturer of crystalline silicon photovoltaic cells for the solar industry garnered $10 million in incentives to create an estimated 100 jobs when fully operational. That’s $100,000 per job. No word about worker pay rates at Sunvia, but you get the picture.

I don’t see any answers there for Butterfield to give that single mom earning $8 per hour.

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