Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Kerry Replies to Palin - Twice

Massachusetts Senator and 2004 Democratic presidential standard bearer John Kerry has repliedto Sarah Palin's editorial in The Washington Post - twice.

He did so on The Huffington Post yesterday and today on The Daily Kos.

For someone who a couple of weeks ago wished she would disappear like South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford he's sending out some awfully mixed messages.

I was struck by a couple of passages in his piece on The Kos:

Palin’s column ignored the entire problem and didn’t even get right the things it did cover.

For example, she said, "Job losses are so certain under this new cap-and-tax plan that it includes a provision accommodating newly unemployed workers from the resulting dried-up energy sector, to the tune of $4.2 billion over eight years. So much for creating jobs."

This is wrong. The pieces of energy reform legislation are job-creation machines. A joint report by PERI Center for American Progress Report calculated that $150 billion in clean-energy investments would create upwards of 1.7 million jobs. These include construction and manufacturing employment for wind- industry turbine manufacture, building retro-fitting, high speed rail development and infrastructure build out and improvement. These are all domestic and community based local jobs. And a joint CAP/UMass study estimated that the legislation would bring down the national unemployment rate from 9.4% to 8.4%.

Kerry would have you believe the Center for American Progress is some kind of objective, empirical organization without a political agenda. It is a left-wing think tank which is part funded by George Soros. Many of its staff now have jobs in the Obama Administration. I guess Kerry just forgot to mention it.

Then there's this passage:

She also says, ""For example, the cost of farming will certainly increase, driving down farm incomes while driving up grocery prices."

This is wrong. Farmers are in position to benefit both from providing a broad variety of sustainable fuels to power generators and from land-use fee income associated with wind farms and other sources. The DOE estimates that if 5% of US energy is derived by 2020 from wind power, rural America could see $60 billion in capital investment. Rural landowners could also derive $1.2 billion in new income and see 80,000 jobs over the next two decades.

So rural America could see $60 billion in capital investment if 5% of U.S. energy is derived from wind power by 2020. That's an awfully big if. As big an if as $1.2 billion in new income and 80,000 new jobs for rural landowners.

But please by all means let John Kerry continue to respond to Sarah Palin's op-ed. This keeps her name in the news on matters of public policy. It can only help her in the long run.

No comments: