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Arlen Specter noted for Platitudinous Political Pomp August 8, 2006

Posted by federalist in Energy, Regulation.

Arlen Specter is a paragon of the pandering politician, which is why he is the new winner of my award for Platitudinous Political Pomp.

In a recent letter to me he noted,

“I have been the lead Republican sponsor of an amendment to the energy bills of the 106th and 107th Congresses that would require the federal government to enact policies to reduce United States consumption of oil by one million barrels per day….”

This perennial amendment of his has never been passed into law, but what exactly was he proposing?  A staffer in his DC office explained that it’s exactly what it sounds like:  He is proposing to require the executive branch — by law — to figure out how to reduce oil consumption.  That’s right: No consideration of the means or costs of this proposal was to be had from Arlen Specter.  He saw a problem, and proposed an arbitrary law to fix it.  Because that’s what great legislators do these days.

Which leaves one wondering: Why stop a one million barrels per day?  In fact, why not pass a law saying that the government must enact policies to cause Americans to travel primarily on unicorns powered by fairy dust whose only emissions are rainbows?

Next time you hear a politician trumpeting his legislative efforts to fix problems, pay close attention: Does he offer any real solutions, or is he just blustering his way to another term with daydreams and platitudes?



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