While Democrats throw huge green-energy subsidies at the likes of Solyndra, General Electric, Fisker Automotive, and the ethanol industry, Republicans do all that plus clean-coal subsidies and oil, gas, nuclear subsidies.
That’s why believers in the free market should be upset when they read this article in The Hill:
GOP lawmakers, aides and an array of energy industry lobbyists huddled at Republican National Committee (RNC) headquarters Monday to lay the groundwork for the party’s official energy platform at August’s national convention….
Another attendee said the meeting included aides with House GOP leadership offices and lobbyists for industry sectors including coal, oil, gas, wind and electric utilities.
Letting industry write your energy platform nearly guarantees that it won’t be a free-market platform. I’ve written in the past about how “All of the Above,” coming from GOP politicians, tends to mean: subsidize everything!
In this arena among others, Republicans are more pro-business than pro-market.
In the 153-page measure, only one provision really reduces the government’s role in the energy industry…
The GOP energy bill would provide, through the EPA, a program of “financial assistance” to companies looking to open refineries. The subsidies are supposed to help companies deal with the permitting process. So rather than simplify a regulatory morass, subsidize the lobbyists and lawyers trying to navigate it.
On the “green side” of things, Republicans would ramp up our current policies of picking winners and losers. The GOP bill perpetuates and expands special tax credits for alternative-fuel vehicles, hydrogen refueling stations and plug-in electric cars. It also extends tax credits for energy-efficient appliances, “energy efficient properties,” home energy audits, renewable-energy production, microturbine properties and biodiesel….
It’s not only tax credits, though. Republicans would create an “American Renewable and Alternative Energy Trust Fund” that would hand out subsidies to favored technologies. In fact, the bill specifies the precise percentage of Trust Fund money to go to which fuels.
Sometimes I suspect Republican lawmakers are so fooled by Obama’s phony populist posturing that they think being conservative means being pro-business.